The International Colored Gemstone Association signed a memorandum of understanding on March 10 in Beijing with the China Council for the Promotion of International Trade, Panyu Branch, to hold the 2009 ICA Congress in Panyu, located in Guangzhou. The dates have not been set.
Li Zhi-Wei, president of the China Council for the Promotion of International Trade, Panyu Branch and Prida Tiasuwan, ICA vice-president, signed the MOU in the presence of Sun Feng Min, secretary-general of the Gems & Jewelry Trade Association of China, and Ke Jie, vice-director of the National Gemstone Testing Centre, who will chair the congress.
Johnny Chan, chairman of Worldmart and Mickey Weinstock, special jewelry advisor to the Panyu Government were appointed to organize the event. More than 1,000 delegates, of which 600 will be international participants and 400 from Hong Kong and China, are expected to attend.
In recent years the jewelry industry in the Panyu area has grown to include nearly 400 enterprises employing more than 70,000 workers. In 2007 the total value of domestic export was $1.32 billion dollars.
Following the ICA’s 2007 Congress in Dubai, Panyu won the bid over several candidate cities to host the next congress in China. This will be the largest jewelry industry conference to ever be held in China. To prepare for this event the Panyu government has decided to name 2008 “The year of the Panyu colored gemstone industry.”