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‘Kashmir-like’ sapphires from Madagascar enter gem trade

Photo courtesy Swiss Gemmological Institute (SSEF)
‘Kashmir-like’ sapphires weighing 30 carats (left) and 13 carats (right) from the Bemainty/Ambatondrazaka region of Madagascar.

The Swiss Gemmological Institute (SSEF) has analyzed  many sapphires ranging from five to 50 carats originating in the Bemainty/ Ambatondrazaka region of Madagascar.

The site has produced impressive sapphire of various sizes and quality, including fancy coloured sapphires and padparadchas. The stones from this Madagascan source have ‘Kashmir-like’ appearance with similar attributes such as subtle and fine milkiness, which results in a sapphire’s velvet-like blue colour.

With these new sapphires resembling top Kashmir sapphires,  it will challenge the gem market and gemmological laboratories as some of these gems will be introduced and fraudulently marketed as Kashmir provenance.  

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