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Ukraine Adds One of the Largest Diamond Producers to "War Sponsors" List

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Photo: Ukraine Adds One of the Largest Diamond Producers to "War Sponsors" List. Source: Collage The Gaze
Photo: Ukraine Adds One of the Largest Diamond Producers to "War Sponsors" List. Source: Collage The Gaze

The National Agency on Corruption Prevention (NACP) has included Shree Ramkrishna Exports (SRK), a major global diamond manufacturing and exporting company, in the list of international sponsors of the war. The Indian company continues to purchase diamonds from Russia despite sanctions in this sector.

This information comes from the NACP's press release.

In 2023, the company tripled its purchases of Russian diamonds compared to 2021, buying products worth $132 million in just the first half of the year.

The NACP noted that India is the world's largest diamond production hub, accounting for 95% of global production.

Approximately three-quarters of these diamonds come from Russia, but no official documents are provided to confirm their origin.

SRK boasts an annual income of over $1.3 billion. The company is involved in diamond cutting, polishing, classification, and export. Despite international sanctions against the world's largest diamond producer, Russia's "Alrosa," SRK has continued to collaborate with Russia, entering into "secret agreements" for the purchase of precious stones worth hundreds of millions of dollars.

However, on its website, SRK states that its "rough diamonds only come from countries participating in the Kimberley Process and have no conflict origin."

The numbers, however, tell a different story. In 2021, Shree Ramkrishna Exports purchased over $59 million worth of diamonds from Russia. In 2022, after Western sanctions were imposed on Russia, the amount rose to over $198 million. In 2023, the company has maintained active cooperation with the aggressor. In the first half of the year alone, it purchased diamonds worth over $132 million, which is three times more than in 2021.

In total, in 2022, Russia exported diamonds worth $3.8 billion. Even though these amounts are relatively small compared to revenues from oil sales, they play a significant role for Russia, as they help finance the war against Ukraine and sustain its economy.

In December 2021, a member of SRK's board of directors, Arpit Narola, stated that the cooperation between Russia and India in the diamond industry is an excellent example of how two distant countries can collaborate in their mutual interests, as the whole world wears Russian diamonds with Indian cutting: "We are actively developing relations with Russia. From there, we get high-quality raw (uncut) stones."

As emphasized by the company, the collaboration between the two countries in the diamond sector is growing rapidly.

"One could say it is growing at the speed of an S-400 missile," highlighted Shree Ramkrishna Exports.

This also indicates potential ideological support for Russia's militaristic policy by the Indian company.

While other Western companies steer clear of the Russian market, Shree Ramkrishna Exports actively acquires Russian diamonds on favorable terms, thereby sponsoring aggression against Ukraine.

The term "War Sponsors" refers to the list compiled by Ukraine's National Agency on Corruption Prevention and posted on the "War and Sanctions" portal. Companies that collaborate with the aggressor and are included in the "War Sponsors" register are added to the world's largest risk assessment database, World-Check, used by banks and insurance companies.

The "War Sponsors" list includes the Austrian banking group Raiffeisen, the British consumer goods company Unilever, the Hungarian OTP Bank, the French retail giant Auchan, and several other well-known companies that continue to operate in Russia.

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