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Gems & Jewellery Export Growth Sustained
The Gem & Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC) of India announced the performance figures for the Indian Gems and Jewellery Sector for financial year 2005-06...
By: Administrator
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Apr 25 2006 12:00AM
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Reference: 2160  

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The Gem & Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC) of India announced the performance figures for the Indian Gems and Jewellery Sector for financial year 2005-06. The Indian Gems and Jewellery Industry has registered a growth of 6.32% with total gem and jewellery exports reaching US$ 16669.11 million (Rs. 73304.29 crores) during the period 2005-06 as compared to US$ 15678.14 million (Rs. 70245.95 crores) in the corresponding period last year. This was announced by Bakul Mehta, Chairman of the GJEPC.

Diamonds Leading:
The growth in the exports of the sector was primarily driven by Cut and Polished Diamonds (CPD) segment, which achieved an increase of 6.07%. The export sales of CPD grew to US$ 11860.49 million during the FY 2005-06 from US$ 11181.56 million in the corresponding period of the FY 2004-05, while total volume of CPD were at 432.72 lakh carats during the FY 2005-06 as compared to 479.47 lakh carats in the corresponding period of the FY 2004-05.

Gold Jewellery Exports registered a growth of 1.28% with exports recorded at US$ 3861.57 million in the FY 2005-06 as compared to US$ 3812.88 million in the FY 2004-05.

Colored Gemstones grew by 21.05% to US$ 233.32 million in FY 2005-06 as compared to US$ 192.75 million in the FY 2004-05.

Value Addition Up:
Bakul Mehta said, “This sector continues to be the frontrunner and highest contributor to the total value addition of the country, contributing US$ 3.5 billion in the FY 2006.”

Consolidation Now: This industry has now reached a stage where it needs to consolidate and focus on value addition and increasing the value chain. It marks the year 2005-06 as ‘year of consolidation’ and looks forward to transform and establish itself as a trading hub for gems and jewellery globally”, added Mehta.

More Imports too :
On the import front, total imports grew by 11.79% with imports increasing from US$ 11640.21 million in the FY 2004-05 to US$ 13013.11 million in the FY 2005-06. Rough Diamonds were imported to the tune of US$ 8708.98 million; Gold Bars for US$ 856.60 million.

Kamal Nath, Commerce Minister of India, announced the annual supplement of Foreign Trade Policy on April 7, 2006. The supplement stresses on employment generating industries like gems and jewellery, textiles, toys, leather, sports goods etc in accordance with the suggestions made by the Board of Trade. The Board had suggested measures to boost exports that include exemptions of all taxes and levies.

Nath announced incentives for the gems and jewellery trade, auto components and aviation to enable India to win market share from other Asian countries. “The foreign trade policy has been export centric.” said Sanjay Budhia, a trade official at the Confederation of Indian Industry (C.I.I.). “Both the kind of buoyancy we are witnessing in manufacturing it will not be surprising if we achieve 20% growth in exports.”

Import Liberalization:
The new measures include allowing the import of precious metal scrap and used jewellery for melting, refining and re-export. The minister also proposed a reduction in the value-addition norm on exports of gold and silver jewellery from 7% to 4.5% in view of the increase of gold and silver prices in the international market. The sharp rise, in recent times, had made the present value-addition norms unrealistic, Nath pointed.

GENEVA: In an upbeat international jewellery market, Christie’s posted a 28 per cent increase in sales in the year 2005 over the previous year. The overall sales totalled US$278.7 million. With this, according to Christie’s, its share of the total jewellery auction market has gone up to 55 per cent.

During the year, the sale of 30 lots exceeded the US$1 million benchmark, with the company selling the four most expensive jewels offered by an auction house including a diamond, natural pearl and ruby crown that fetched a world record of US$6,138,000 in November.

“As a luxury item, high end jewellery is purchased when all other markets are faring well. With stock prices, oil prices and the general world economy on the upswing, we are noticing a renewed confidence in the gem and jewellery market….We believe there is plenty more room to grow and with more wealth being created every day, it is unlikely to slow down,’’ said Francois Curiel, international head of jewellery and chairman of Christie’s Europe.

Christie’s strong results were reflected across the world with the markets in all regions on the increase. Christie’s New York jewellery team held sales totalling US$ 89.6 million, representing an increase of 51 per cent over 2004. In Hong Kong, jewellery sales totaled US$60.2 million, an increase of 24 per cent on the previous year with Europe leading the performance with sales of US$128.9 million, a 17 per cent increase from 2004. In addition, Christie’s had an exceptional year of private sales, which are negotiated by our specialist team discreetly and separately from the auction activities. These reached the highest total in the firm’s history, with a 101 ct D flawless heart-shaped diamond being the highlight of the year.

Diamonds Dominated the Market:
Diamonds led the market at Christie’s auctions worldwide during 2005. As the prices for rough diamonds continue to rise, so do those for polished diamonds sold at auctions. Colored diamonds also fetched high prices last year, especially since the really rare (mainly blue and pink) became more difficult to locate in the open market.

There is also an increasing interest in natural pearls as collectors realize how rare they are in comparison with cultured pearls. Very few natural pearls are found today so prices for fine quality pearls that do find their way into the market keep rising. Black natural pearls are even rarer and demand is currently high.

The scarcity in the market of signed jewels and unusual gemstones, which are the most sought after by international collectors continue to fetch prices that are stronger than ever- a trend that is set to continue. Period jewels – the new, rare collectible that everyone looks for – also performed extremely well. Prices have risen over the last 10 years. A recent example of appreciation includes an Art Deco emerald, ruby, sapphire and diamond “Tutti Frutti’’ bracelet by Cartier, amongst the most beautiful and imaginative creations designed by the famous jeweller Jacques Cartier (1884-1942) and inspired by his trip to India in 1911. In May 1995 in Geneva, Christie’s sold a Tutti-Frutti bracelet by Cartier, circa 1930, for US$540,000. Ten years later, in November 2005, a near identical bracelet fetched US$1,093,000 in the company’s Geneva salesroom. This is a world record price for such a jewel.

“Over the years, numerous important jewels have been taken apart for their principal gemstones. So, to acquire an original creation by one of the greatest jewellery houses in the world, has now taken on the same status as locating a rare painting by Picasso, Rothko or Bacon,’’ commented Francois Curiel.

World’s Top Four:
The top four jewels acquired at auctions worldwide in 2005 were sold by Christie’s:
1) US$6,138,440: A diamond, natural pearl and ruby crown sold at Christie’s Geneva November 16, 2005. A world auction record for a crown.
2) US$6,008,00: The Rose of Dubai, a pear-shaped fancy pink, IF, diamond of 25.02 cts sold at Christie’s New York, October 19, 2005.
3) US$4,216,00: A rectangular-cut D colour, flawless diamond ring of 50.01 cts by Graff sold at Christie’s New York, April 12, 2005.
4) US$4,123,333: A pair of pear-shaped D color, VS1, potentially flawless clarity Golconda diamonds of 27.72 and 33.83 cts, from the Property of a Lady sold at Christie’s Geneva, May 19, 2005.

World Auction Records Broken
Christie’s broke 5 world auction records in 2005:
For a crown: US$6 million diamond crown sold in Geneva in November.
For a pearl: The historic “La Regente’’ sold in Geneva in November for US$2.5 million.
For a Tutti-Frutti bracelet by Cartier sold in Geneva in November for US$ 1 million.
For a jadeite saddle ring, sold in Hong Kong in November for $641,680.
For a ruby per carat: The “ideal ruby’’ sold in April in New York for US$274,656 per carat or a total of US$2.2 million, now superceded by the Graff ruby mentioned above.

2006 to Enjoy Buoyance:
The jewellery market promises sustained levels in 2006 with early indications of strong results. The very strong Important Jewels sales in St Moritz held on February 15, 2006, amounted US$16,727,194, the highest ever total in the firm’s 16-year history of jewellery sales in St Moritz.

In particular in 2006, jewellery with important provenance will feature strongly. Following on from the sale of 10 successful single-owner collections in 2005, superb collections will be presented in 2006 in all sale locations to satiate the current market appetite.

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