Ambassador of Sri Lanka to China Dr. Palitha Kohona participated in the International Jewellery Summit held in parallel with the China International Import Expo 2021 (CIIE) in Shanghai as a keynote speaker. The Ambassadors of Belgium and Italy spoke on video. Among the other speakers were representatives from ASEAN, Malaysia and Myanmar, all online.
China’s E-market for Gems and Jewellery had recovered considerably and now is a key partner of Italian and Belgian industries recovering from the pandemic.
Both Belgian and Italian speakers emphasised that the gems and jewellery trade has become a key element in their economies and their trade with China. It is also a major employment generator in those countries.
China’s jewellery industry will grow by 14% this year creating an opportunity for gem exports to become a major export and a foreign exchange earner for Sri Lanka. The world industry will grow by 3-4%.
Many who attended the lunch afterwards expressed the hope that the Sri Lankan gems and jewellery trade would be better represented at the CIIE 2022, particularly noting the wide array of Sri Lanka stones being displayed and sold by other exhibitors.
The Thai, Indian and Pakistani gem displays were considerably glamorised by the impressive collections of Sri Lanka stones exhibited by them. The piece de resistance was the crystal clad porche (belonging to the royal house of Dubai) occupying the spot originally reserved for Sri Lanka’s star cluster.
National Gem and Jewellery Testing Centre of China Director Ye Zhibin and Geological Laboratory Standardisation Director Yang Lixin have asked whether a formal relationship could be established with the Gem and Jewellery Authority of Sri Lanka.