From left LPC Chairman Rizan Nazeer, SLGJA Gem Segment Vice Chairman Punsiri Tennakoon, NGJA Chairman Reginald Cooray, FACETS Sri Lanka Chairman Altaf Iqbal, EDB Industrial Products Deputy Director Harsha Pathberiya, SLGJA Secretary Sheriff Rahuman - Pic by Shehan Gunasekara
By Divya Thotawatte
In a bid to attract international dealers to Sri Lanka’s industry, the launch of the 29th edition of Facets International Gem and Jewellery Exhibition, which promises a ‘bigger and better’ show than ever before, was announced recently.
Facets International Gem and Jewellery Exhibition 2019 is organised by the Sri Lanka Gem and Jewellery Association and sponsored by the National Gem and Jewellery Authority (NGJA) and the Export Development Board.
The exhibition which is to be held from 29 August to 1 September is a trademark event of the global gem and jewellery sphere and is to draw much attention from the international community, while also catering to the tourism sector of the country, said organisers at a press briefing held this week.
Sri Lanka Gem and Jewellery Association Chairman Altaf Iqbal said: “This event is the pinnacle of the Sri Lankan gem and jewellery industry. The prime objective of the show is to expose and promote industry development, with special emphasis on the industry’s primary resource; the Ceylon Sapphire and attract more international buyers to Sri Lanka.”
According to the organisers, delegations from the US and India will be present at the exhibition, as well as individual buyers from China, India, Zambia, Nepal, Kuwait, Israel, the UK, the US and other European nations. The exhibition will showcase precious stones, gold and silver jewellery, with a range of exquisite watches to semi-precious stones, coloured stones and costume jewellery.
The exhibition will also offer guests a glimpse into the lapidary sector of the gem and jewellery industry. A number of stalls will feature various pieces of machinery and tools used to cut and polish gemstones and craft jewellery. There will also be a number of laboratory stalls where visitors can get a look at the process of examination that a gem is subjected to. They can even test their own gems and receive a certificate proving the stones’ value and authenticity.
NGJA Chairman Reginald Cooray delivering a speech at the briefing said: “Due to the disturbances caused incidents earlier this year, all business activities, especially tourism, faced unprecedented difficulties. Therefore, this period is crucial. All our efforts must be concentrated to rebuild our country and the industry.” He added that events such as the Facets international exhibition will contribute greatly in developing the industry.
The exhibition will also feature industry related academic institutes, which will guide and assist young people seeking to join the industry. Similar to previous years, special informational stalls will be set up this year to provide knowledge and details about opportunities to be found in the gem and jewellery industry of Sri Lanka. What has now become one of the most well-known exhibitions of its kind throughout the world, Facets first came into existence in 1991 with the purpose of showcasing the best of Sri Lanka’s most precious resources. Thereby, boosting the sale of gemstones and jewellery among overseas markets and attracting more international dealers to the island.
The official partners for Facets 2019 are Amana Bank as Official Banker, Blue Ocean Group of Companies as Official Apartment Partner, Union Pay International as Official Card Scheme and Alpha Safe as Official Safe Partner. Key Jay Securities joins as Official Security Surveillance Partner while Classic Travels and Hilton Colombo join as Official Travel and Hotel Partners respectively.