On 16 February 2019, Air India Express inaugurated the first-ever international service from Surat International Airport with a non-stop flight to Sharjah Airport, in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
Executive Chairman of DMCC, Ahmed Bin Sulayem boarded Flight IX-171 and was joined by a number of senior dignitaries from both government and business, as well as representatives of diamond companies registered with DMCC.
Operating twice a week, direct flights from Gujarat represent a significant opportunity to boost UAE-India commercial ties and in particular, diamond trade between Dubai and Surat.
DMCC sits at the heart of Dubai’s status as one of the world’s leading diamond trading hubs, and Surat is recognised as the global hub for diamond cutting and polishing; 90 percent of the world’s diamonds are polished in the city.
The introduction of the direct flights has reduced travel time from Surat to Sharjah and Dubai by almost 10 hours, increasing convenience for Surat’s diamantaires in accessing international rough diamond auctions hosted in Dubai.
With plans to invest and enhance its trading floor in 2019, the Dubai Diamond Exchange (DDE) is set to host more rough diamond tenders than ever before and grow the number of Indian diamond companies registered with DMCC.