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Deputy Finance Minister Alexei Moiseev said the world diamond market had no way of making up for the loss of Russian diamonds owing to Western sanctions.

“An artificial restriction of the supply of diamonds on world markets on the scale of Russian production cannot be compensated from other sources, as these do not exist,” Moiseev said.

The Group of Seven major Western powers has been weighing various proposals on how to track the origin of diamonds coming into Western markets, and a senior European Union diplomat has said the bloc is waiting for this in order to impose sanctions on Russian diamonds.