Bangkok Fair Ends on a Strong Note

The 41st edition of the Bangkok Gems & Jewelry Fair ended March 2 with the organizers reporting brisk sales and an increase in international visitors.

Viroon Tejapaibol deputy Minister of Commerce presided over the opening ceremony of the on Feb. 27 at Royal Jubilee Hall, Impact Challenger. Thai Gem & Jewelry Traders Association president Vichai Assarasakorn, government officials, industry leaders were among the guests on hand at the ceremony.

“The contribution of the gems and jewelry to the Thai economy is significant,” Tejapaibol said. “Gems and Jewelry exports last year exceeded $5.3 billion, up 46.72 percent from the previous year, ranking fifth on Thailand’s export lists.”

Tejapaibol added that the gems and jewelry exports accounted for 3.5 percent of Thai’s total exports in 2007.

“The outlook is positive for Thailand to achieve the targeted to reach $6.5 billion at the end of 2008,” he said.

He said that the Thai gem and jewelry industry creates around one million jobs. Workers are employed in heat treatment, cutting polishing, and designing.

Assarasakorn revealed that, the TGJTA board’s three-pronged plan to stimulate the industry into sustainable growth. It will address the impediment issues involving tax and industry funding, and finding new overseas markets.

“We are seeking an endorsement from the government to remove the 7 percent VAT imposed on imported raw materials, which has proved to be a heavy financial burden for local small and medium enterprises,” Assarasakorn said. “We are lobbying for government support to establish a facility, dubbed ‘Gems Bank,’ to support lending to local SMEs which make up 90 percent of the Thai jewel industry.”

The fair for the first time used an “e-Appointment” program to help overseas buyers meet with exhibitors. It was launched as a part of the fair’s “Online Sourcing Project”
This year visitors were thrilled by “Sala Design”, which has been created to launch

Thai’s newest and unique jewelry design pavilion was launched at the fair designed to set jewelry trend and draw attention from fashion world. On its first launch, TGJTA started with the theme “The Passion of Purple” displayed the new designs from Thailand’s highly-skilled designers. This exhibition has created a purple evolution featuring lavender jade, amethyst, purple sapphire, and purple gold.

Other attractions at the show include TGJ Elite Creations, the Hot 2008 Vol.2, and the Silver Exporter Club pavilion.

The Bangkok Gems & Jewelry Fair will be hold its 42nd edition Sept. 11-15 at Impact Challenger.

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