DGFT urges GJEPC to popularize jewellery exports thru’ e-commerce

India’s gold jewellery ecosystem stands strong in infrastructure, policies, exports, retail, design, and innovation, and is poised for a significant role on the global stage. Santosh Kumar Sarangi, Director General, DGFT, Union Ministry of Commerce & Industry, Govt. of India urged GJEPC to popularize Indian jewellery exports through e-commerce; and to position India as top supplier, design creator & value-adding hub for gold jewellery.

These were the key takeaway from the India Gold & Jewellery Summit, the two-day (23-24 January) organised by Gem & Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC) at Bharat Mandapam in the Capital. The Summit aims to enhance and expand the role of gold in the economic growth of the country.  World Gold Council was the lead partner for the Summit.

Marking their presence at the inaugural were Santosh Kumar Sarangi, Director General, DGFT, Union Ministry of Commerce & Industry, Govt. of India; Vipul Shah, Chairman, GJEPC; Somasundaram PR, Regional CEO, India, World Gold Council; R. Arulanandan, Director, Department of Commerce, Union Ministry of Commerce & Industry, Govt. of India,; Kirit Bhansali, Vice Chairman, GJEPC; Dr. Nawal Kishore Agarwal, Convener, Jewellery Panel, GJEPC among others.

The main theme for the 4th edition of India Gold & Jewellery Summit 2024 was Theme- Raise Gold’s Role In Economic Growth. The inaugural day of the summit featured various sessions, including discussions on leveraging the India-UAE Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) for export growth, enhancing India’s competitiveness through design and innovation, and ensuring the secure supply of gold through digitization.

On the second day of IGJS 2024, the focus shifted to topics such as promoting compliance through responsible reporting in India, exploring the sustainable coexistence of independent stores and organized retail, and addressing global compliance through responsible sourcing.

Santosh Kumar Sarangi, Director General, DGFT, Union Ministry of Commerce & Industry, said, “India stands as one of the largest buyers of gold globally, showcasing considerable buying power that can potentially influence the streamlining of gold prices and availability.

Recognising the fragmented nature of gold demand in India, spanning from small to large jewellers and varying from kilograms to tons, there’s a pressing need for streamlining exports. With immense potential, the aim should be to become the foremost exporter globally. Drawing a parallel with Switzerland, we need champions in India investing in creative designs catering to Western tastes.”

“Collaboration between the Department of Commerce, GJEPC, and leading brands is essential to formulate a robust branding strategy positioning India as a top supplier and value-added provider of gold jewellery”, said Mr. Sarangi.

Talking about e-commerce, Sarangi said, “The potential of e-commerce in cross-border transactions is vast, with estimates predicting a rise to 2 trillion dollars by 2030. To encourage this platform, the consignment value for e-commerce exports is increased to Rs.10 lakh. GJEPC is urged to organize outreach programs in interior regions to facilitate understanding and adoption of e-commerce platforms.”

R. Arulanandan, Director, Department of Commerce, Union Ministry of Commerce & Industry, Govt. of India, said, India faces challenges as a consuming nation heavily reliant on imports, particularly of bullion and doré gold. The complexities of exporting 24-karat gold further add to our concerns, including regulatory issues.

The collaboration between the World Gold Council and GJEPC, along with other stakeholders, is a positive step in prompting collective reflection. The Department of Commerce aims to leverage your insights to transform these thoughts into actionable solutions. Thank you for this opportunity, and we look forward to your valuable contributions.”

Vipul Shah, Chairman, GJEPC, said, “The India Gold & Jewellery Summit aims is to create a dialogue between the policy makers and the industry to help create policies for growth of trade and exports from India’s gem and jewellery sector. 

This year’s Summit is significant due to key policy initiatives taken by the Government such as signing of India UAE CEPA and India Australia ECTA; successful implementation of Hallmarking and HUID policy; a very successful review of India by FATF and a host of other initiatives.

Talking about the future, we aim to reach a cumulative gem and jewellery export value of USD 75 billion by 2030. Specifically, we have set a target for gold jewellery alone to achieve USD 25 billion by 2030.”

“The gold industry plays a significant role in shaping our economic landscape. India has made remarkable strides, creating a dynamic ecosystem with vast potential for growth. This includes jewellery manufacturing units, retailers, exporters, refiners, gold exchange, skill development institutes, and promotional bodies such as GJEPC, which showcase and create markets for India-made jewellery across the world,” said Shah.

Somasundaram PR, Regional CEO, India, World Gold Council (WGC), said, “Gold has touched lifetime high prices even as interest rates are high and stock markets do not reflect any stress. Central banks bought over 1000 tonnes of gold last year and this trend continues at these high prices. India will see a huge rebound in gold demand as prosperity rises and as organized retail grows significantly.

We have to be prepared for a strong rebound in Indian demand on the back of strong economic growth as incomes are the biggest influencer of demand in our context. We are in the final stages of forming a self-regulatory body soon for the industry with support from apex trade bodies such as GJEPC and other constituents.”

Vipul Shah added, “GJEPC recently launched a SOP book for the Gold Jewellery Industry, which sets out general compliances required to be undertaken by the gold jewellery industry from the perspective of Customs Law, Foreign Trade Policy; Goods and Services Tax, Income Tax and Hallmarking.”

Talking about the India-UAE CEPA, Shah said, “The gold industry, especially, has been benefited by India-UAE CEPA which was championed by our Hon’ble Commerce Minister. To take full advantage of CEPA we have also set up India Jewellery Exposition Centre in Dubai. India’s exports of plain gold jewellery to UAE surged by 47% during April – November 2023. In 2022, the global exports of gold jewellery reached USD 113.19 billion, with India contributing significantly by accounting for USD 9.22 billion or 8.10% of this total. India secured its position as the 4th largest exporter of gold jewellery, following major players such as China, UAE and Switzerland.

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