The 61st Bangkok Gems and Jewelry Fair (BGJF) under the theme “Heritage & Craftsmanship, held at the Challenger Hall 1-3, IMPACT Muang Thong Thani, Bangkok, from February 21 – 25, 2018 was opened by the Minister of Commerce of Thailand, Sontirat Sontijirawong. The fair held under the auspices of the Ministry of Commerce’s Department of International Trade Promotion (DITP), is expected to attract over 20,000 visitors from 130 countries, with 900 leading companies from Thailand and abroad taking part and occupying over 2,000 booths.
In the year 2017, the gems and jewelry industry of Thailand was ranked as the third highest export industry in the country after automotive and computer industries, achieving total export earnings of nearly US$13 billion. Excluding unwrought gold, the jewelry industry registered an increase in earnings of 2.25% over that of 2016, which according to the organizers of the fair, was first time it happened in the last three years.
The Bangkok Gem and Jewelry Fair while aiming to highlight Thailand’s cultural heritage and the craftsmanship of Thai artisans, and setting the stage for local and international companies to engage in trade negotiations, is also expected to give a further boost to the country’s exports of gems and jewelry in the year 2018.
The Chief Guest at the opening ceremony of the show, Sontirat Sontijirawong, the Minister of Commerce of Thailand said, “The gem and jewelry industry is a high-potential industry that is key to the Thai economy. The strength of the industry lies throughout the value chain, from sourcing, manufacturing, to trading, with a workforce of approximately 1.2 million from upstream to downstream. Thus, the government is committed to implementing measures to ensure continuous growth of the industry, while setting a goal of propelling Thailand to become the World’s Jewelry Hub.”
Continuing further, Minister Sontijirawong said, “The Ministry of Commerce has carried out policies to promote the growth of the gem and jewelry industry in order to increase the competitive edge for businesses while seeking new market channels and developing new products that cater to the latest industry trends. The Bangkok Gem and Jewelry Fair is a key platform that offers an opportunity for Thai companies, both large and small, to do business with high-potential business people and buyers from around the world, learn about consumers’ needs, and expand their business networks and exchange knowledge with others.”
Continuing in the same vein, the Minister of Commerce said, “The outlook for gem and jewelry exports in 2018 is positive as trading partners of Thailand are recovering from stagnant growth. The Ministry expects that this edition of Bangkok Gem and Jewelry Fair will open new opportunities for Thai companies. Combined with government measures such as tax exemptions, the fair is certain to boost trade in this industry while propelling Thailand to become one of the world’s gem and jewelry trading hub.”
For this year’s show, the fair organizers in keeping with the government’s “Thailand 4.0” and “Creative Economy” initiatives have created several special exhibition zones, such as “The New Faces” featuring jewelry products from leading SMEs across the country with over 120 new exhibitors; the “Innovation and Design Zone (IDZ)” featuring innovative products from start-ups as well as jewelry that utilize new techniques; and “The Niche Showcase” featuring the latest trends in jewelry for niche markets.
Apart from this several informative seminars and consultation workshops, by both Thai and international experts will also be held during the period of the show. Mobile gems analyzing unit from the Gem and Jewelry Institute of Thailand (GIT) and other world-leading institutes will also be presented at the show.