Coimbatore Gets Common Facility Centre

Mumbai: India’s Minister for Commerce & Industry and Civil Aviation, Mr. Suresh Prabhu laid the foundation of the Common Facility Centre (CFC) at Coimbatore – the ‘Ratna Abhushan Suvidha Kendra’, is a project by the Gem & Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC), sponsored by the Ministry of Commerce & Industry. Present on the occasion were Mr. B Sabarinath (President, Coimbatore Jewellery Association) and Mr. B Muthu Venkat (President, Coimbatore Manufacturer’s Association) and many gem & jewellery industry dignitaries. Common Facility Centre at Coimbatore will be instrumental for technological and social transformation of the workers and small manufacturers engaged with diamond cutting & polishing as well as jewellery manufacturing activities.

With a view of aligning the goal of PM “Make in India vision” to the gems & jewellery sector, GJEPC’s initiative aims at making India a global gem & jewellery manufacturing hub by promoting local artisans and indigenous design & production. GJEPC has already set up CFCs in Visnagar, Palanpur, Amreli and Junagadh in Gujarat. GJEPC has plans to set up CFCs in Delhi, Kolkata, Jaipur & Hyderabad by 2019-2020.

Mr. Prabhu addressed the gathering via a video conference. “The objective in setting up the Common Facility Centre is to provide the artisans and kaarigars in the gem & jewellery industry with an easy access to a state-of-the-art capital intensive and technologically advanced facility. CFCs help us march forward in our quest to be the ‘Jeweller to the World’ and achieve our ambition of USD 75 bn of gem & jewellery exports.

Establishment of CFC in small towns and villages would greatly help to transfer the technological advancement benefit to the small needy manufacturers. CFC would also provide an opportunity to re-skill / up-skill the existing workforce of G & J sector with state-of- art-equipment widely used to manufacture G & J products globally.”

He also added, “Around 60,000 people would get trained over a period of time in Coimbatore alone, also benefiting 1500 to 2000 jewellery utility units. A similar programme has been launched in Udupi as well. Udupi which is known as the famous temple town of India, would soon be known for their designing and training institutes as well. With Coimbatore and Udupi put together several thousand people and a few lakhs will also benefit from the same, bringing about a huge development ”.

Mr. Pramod Kumar Agrawal, Chairman, GJEPC, said, “It has been constant endeavor of GJEPC to to provide the gem & jewellery exporters with the best possible infrastructure and modern facilities which will support and medium manufacturers across the southern region to augment their production quality and overall capacity. The Common Facility Centre in Coimbatore will enable the upliftment and empowerment of artisans and operators an avenue for training and upgrading of their skills to enhance competitiveness and match the global expectations. CFC will be instrumental in bringing technological and social transformation. CFC will play a pivotal role in recognizing new talent and exposing the young artisans as well as existing operators to the global markets. It will also showcase the wealth of our handcrafted jewellery & design capital to the world.”

Mr. Surya Narayanan, Director Southern Region, GJEPC, said, “Coimbatore is a major export cluster. The CFC initiative will help in increasing productivity and improving the quality of the finished goods with better yield. Further, considering the current scenario of the industry, if such facility made available to the small unit holders at reasonable rate, units may attract more work in their region from the city. CFC will give a huge boost in production and quality of manufacturing jewellery by giving access of modern machines to small units in and around Coimbatore.”

In the absence of CFC, most of the units in the proposed locations are operating on smaller scale and mainly engaged in job work activities. It is difficult for them to invest in cost intensive equipment or machinery at their own and even if they install it, it won’t be effectively utilized in terms of its optimum capacity due to small volume of the work they deal with. Non-availability of the state-of-the-art equipment resulted into lower productivity, less yield & inferior quality of the finished diamonds. Further, sometimes it becomes difficult for them to meet the time line and deliver the finished product in time due high-level dependency on the artisans and availability of skilled labour as per requirement in remote areas is a major issue.