If you own gold, you have a reliable asset, tell CIB’s Managing Director Manuel Castillo, and his son and successor, Alvaro Castillo

Companyia Internacional del Brillant (CIB) sells investment gold and diamonds. CIB is highly respected among qualified investors seeking to protect their savings and provide returns with complete security, confidentiality, honesty from an international perspective.

CIB works exclusively with perfectly symmetrical diamonds of the maximum size (carat), best color (D), maximum clarity (flawless), perfectly cut, and without fluorescence. Only 2% of diamonds in the world have these characteristics and are therefore considered investment diamonds.

We discussed the world of gold and diamonds with CIB’s Managing Director Manuel Castillo, and his son and worthy successor, Alvaro Castillo – who six years ago, at the age of sixteen, became the youngest diamond appraiser at the Antwerp Stock Exchange in Belgium.

Interview: Irina Rybalchenko 

CIB, a company with Andorran origins, has completed its internationalization steps by registering ACM Gold Trading FZCO, operating in the Dubai-Free Zone. Why did you choose Dubai?

Dubai is a great bridge for international business and connections between Europe and Asia. Dubai is the new Switzerland. Fortunately, we can say that we have one of the four licenses issued to import and export investment gold within the United Arab Emirates, which is a tax-free zone.

Our clients can be in any country without traveling to Dubai and be fully confident that their investment gold or diamonds is well protected.

In addition to Andorra and the United Arab Emirates, we have offices in Rome and Antwerp. Although we do not have an office in Switzerland, we cover all banking operations suitable for this country.

How does the market for precious metals and gemstones work? Tell us about quality certification of gold, diamonds and gemstones. Who issues these certificates?

The benchmark prices for gold and silver are established as world prices and administered by ICE Benchmark Administration Limited (IBA). In this sense, we work with the London Bullion Market Association (The LBMA).

Pure gold is defined as gold 999.9 or 24K, it is also a gold bar or ingot. Gold of 999.9 tests is the highest indicator of purity. A stamp with these numbers means that a particular 1 kilogram bar contains 999.9 grams of pure gold. Even modern technology does not allow us to get purer gold.

When it comes to diamonds, they are certified by the Gemological Institute of America. The term “GIA Certified” is used in the jewelry industry to refer to diamonds that have undergone a rigorous GIA grading process. It is this body that sets the price based on supply and demand.

For gemstones, there is a certificate called “The Gemstone Certificate Report” – this certificate is used to verify the quality of a gemstone. It is essentially a drawing of the gemstone detailing all of its key elements.

A gemstone certificate contains or confirms the following: the name of the gemstone, the type of mineral, its carat weight and its dimensions in millimeters. The certificate also contains information on whether the stone is natural or synthetic, what color it is, and information on whether the stone has been subjected to other treatments (e.g., irradiation).

Could you tell us more about diamonds? How to value diamonds correctly?

For diamonds, additional information about its clarity, color, fluorescence, cut quality, symmetry, and polish is always relevant.

For example, the most expensive gemstone known in the world to date is the red diamond, with a price of up to one million dollars per carat.

The standard of weight – as well as the size of a diamond – was a carat equal to 0.2 grams.

In the ancient East, due to the lack of professional equipment, the carob seeds (the Latin name of which is consonant with the word carat) served as a measure of the weight of precious stones. This is where the name came from.

The quality of a diamond’s color, surprisingly enough, lies in its lack of color. The more transparent the color, the higher its value.

The clarity or transparency of a diamond indicates the presence and number of flaws in the stone. In nature, there is not a single diamond that is absolutely transparent. If you have such a unique specimen, I do apologize, but it is a fake.

And finally, the cut of the diamond: the further fate of the stone depends on its quality and professionalism of the master. It is he who decides how to maximize the use of the stone so as not to lose its value and to keep it as profitable as possible. The most common cuts are 57 and 17 facets.

What are diamonds cut for?

The cut of a diamond is determined by symmetry, proportion and polish. Cut is the process of turning a diamond into a faceted stone. Cut affects the beauty of a stone more than any other factor. Jewelers use the following basic cut shapes: round, “princess”, oval, “pear”, “marquise”, heart and others.

Many books have been written on the subject of diamonds and many movies have been made. For example, the Pink Panther – does it really exist?

Indeed! Every diamond has its own history, and its own memory. The fact is that diamonds are not used to being in the light. All the most valuable diamonds are in private collections, do not get on the market, and very rarely come out of the shadows.

Why does modern man need precious metals? After all, gold in its purest form and in the truest sense is not a means of payment …

Gold is the instrument that covers all financial transactions. In all times of economic instability, people need a safe haven. Gold is perpetual money. In five thousand years, gold has outlived all other forms of money! Gold gives strength to paper money just as it gives weight value to currency. If you buy a gold bar from me and sell it to someone, you will not lose a single euro. Thus, it is not a question of movement of money, but of exchange by weight.

One of the rules of the world economy is to back up the money produced with the equivalent value of gold reserves. What will this imbalance in the world economy lead to?

When the US dollar collapsed during the Nixon era, permanent debt was a constant. Nixon decided to produce more dollars than the value of the gold held in reserve. We are still suffering from this constant debt globally. The world is increasing that debt every day because of the US. The world debt ceiling has been reached. A volume of banknotes was issued that did not compensate for the weight in gold.

Why don’t we use the Swiss Franc as the reserve currency? Switzerland is not suffering from an economic downturn because its central bank is able to buy gold. Switzerland buys gold for one Swiss Franc, which is equivalent to 0.92 troy ounce of gold. This is the value of their currency.

Which is better to invest in today – diamonds or gold?

Physical gold is tangible; it’s not the same as digital money. Every kilogram of gold is your security; it’s what gives you solvency as the equivalent of digital money.

A Swiss bank, for example, issues 59 ATF coupons (they’re paper) for every kilogram of gold.

If you buy four kilograms of gold from me, I will compensate you for the exchange in weight, not in money.

Today, our capital is digital and gold is physical. Thanks to gold, we have a stable economy, liquidity and growth.

It should be remembered that investment gold is taxed at a very low rate, almost zero; silver and rhodium are not taxed at all. Gold is a good asset for the financial system.

An investment diamond is also beneficial. In addition to its value as a safe haven, diamonds provide you with mobility, which gold cannot, because a 10-carat diamond is easier to transport for your own use than a 15 or 20 kilogram bar of gold.

Who are the major players in the global gold and precious metals market?

The main players in the gold market are Russia, China, USA, Canada, Australia and Africa. However, the spread is controlled by Germany.

How much gold is left in the world?

No one knows. Russia is one of the main producers, but does not use it 100%. The earth is made up of gold and other metals. Russia disposes of gold according to its needs. Gold is not taxed; it is a rare and recognized metal. It is, however, one thing to mine it and another to distribute it.

What happens if the world runs out of gold right now?

There is enough gold in the world to cover needs. When there is a shortage of goods, demand for gold increases and consequently its price rises. Gold is always out of market volatility. If you have gold, you have a reliable asset.

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