Dubai–The Dubai Diamond Exchange confirmed Wednesday that Ahmed Bin Sulayem will succeed Peter Meeus as its chairman, effective Jan. 31.
The DDE sits under the umbrella of the Dubai Multi Commodities Centre (DMCC), and Bin Sulayem is currently the executive chairman of the latter, where for more than 12 years he has been responsible for implementing the necessary infrastructure for the diamond marketplace to succeed in Dubai.
Over that time, in which Meeus also served as chairman of the DDE, Dubai has become a global trading hub for rough and polished stones.
In 2003, the emirate handled trade of $3.5 billion worth of diamonds. The DDE was created in 2004, and last year, Dubai traded $26 billion worth of diamonds, according to the DMCC.
Peter Meeus, outgoing chairman of the Dubai Diamond Exchange
The DDE is the only diamond bourse in the Middle East affiliated with the World Federation of Diamond Bourses, and it has facilitated a growing number of diamond tenders as well as trade benefits for pearls and colored gemstones over the last decade-plus.
Bin Sulayem commented in a DMCC release to press, “The opportunities and challenges for the Dubai Diamond Exchange are of a different nature going forward. In the past 12 years, we built the foundation of a solid exchange, attracting over 1,000 members operating out of the Almas Tower.
“Not only do we want to consolidate this position, but it is also our ambition to grow further and make Dubai a unique and interconnected hub with the rest of the world. Our proximity to Africa as well as the unique logistical infrastructure which Emirates Airlines provides to hundreds of destinations world-wide is crucial in the development of Dubai as a leading diamond centre.”
Meeus said, “I have been extremely privileged to work in such a dynamic environment as Dubai for the last 12 years. With the help of the Dubai government, we have been able to establish a unique facility which today is one of the top three trading centers of diamonds in the world.
“This has been an extraordinary experience with many challenges, especially when the financial crisis hit us in 2008, but Dubai has shown its resilience and flexibility to come through even from the worst possible situations. I am convinced that the Dubai Diamond Exchange has a great future ahead and I’m proud to have been able to participate in its growth since its inception.”
The DDE houses more than 1,000 regional and international diamond and gem companies at the Almas Tower in Dubai. Membership in the diamond bourse is compulsory for any members of the DMCC who deal in diamonds, gemstones or jewelry production.
Peter Meeus will stay involved in the DDE in the near future as honorary chairman.