Thai Officials Plan Trade Trip to Namibia

The Thai Gem & Jewelry Traders Association will make an official trip to Namibia to establish gems and diamond cutting as a part of future barter trade agreement between two countries. The trip is tentatively scheduled for June.

The group of government and private sector officials will be focusing on exploring new raw material resources for Thai jewelry manufacturers and persuading Thai government approval to promote Thailand as a free-port for gems and jewelry.

TGJTA says the waiver will spur the Thai jewel industry because it will allow a free flow of needed raw materials, both in terms of volume and variety, into the kingdom. Apart from promoting trade agreements between two countries, it’s also a entertaining the possibility of inviting Namibia’s top diamond mine to join the Bangkok Gems & Jewelry Fair.

Ranking Africa’s fifth largest mining industry, Namibia diamond mining industry granted 74 percent of the gross domestic product with another 11 percent from diamond manufacturing section. Apart from diamonds, Namibia is also rich in gems and precious stone such as tourmaline, amethyst, and topaz. Currently, the Thai jewelry industry imports raw materials from Namibia, mainly through middlemen.

Neville Melvin Gertze, ambassador of Namibia to Thailand, said that Namibia is welcoming foreign investment without restrictions on foreign ownership, especially in jewelry business. He also invited Thai government and private delegation to visit Namibia.

Thai officials said the country is interested in signing deals with Namibia, particularly in direct raw material imports.

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