Bangkok: : Thailand’s Ministry of Commerce has joined hands with partners to encourage leading jewelry shops and businesses to participate in the “Buy With Confidence” program that will issue certifications to ensure the quality and standard of Thai gem and jewelry with the objective to boost confidence among Thai and international consumers.
Minister of Commerce Sontirat Sontijirawong states that the gem and jewelry industry is one of the key industries in the country, ranking third in exports after automotive and computers, generating 435 billion baht in exports and 533 billion baht in domestic trading, accounting for nearly one trillion baht of turnover or 6.3 percent of the country’s GDP. Foreign tourists are also key buyers of gem and jewelry products with approximately 35.38 million tourists visiting Thailand in 2017. Among this number, Chinese tourists accounted for the largest group totaling around 10 million tourists.
“Ministry of Commerce has assigned The Gem and Jewelry Institute of Thailand (Public Organization) or GIT to carry out the Buy With Confidence (BWC) program to boost confidence to consumers and tourists. The program is key to promote Thailand’s position as the World’s Gem and Jewelry Hub according to government policy through the certification issued by GIT. The project is achieved with the cooperation of many organizations, from the Ministry of Commerce, the Ministry of Tourism and Sports (the Department of Tourism and the Tourism Authority of Thailand), Office of the Consumer Protection Board, and the Tourist Police Bureau. The ministry anticipates that this program will increase confidence for consumers as well as adds more opportunities to businesses to sell certified gem and jewelry to local and foreign tourists. BWC is expected to help generate an additional 10 billion baht in sales of cash and carry goods to foreign tourists which will result in the total sales of gem and jewelry in this category reaching 45 billion baht, a 30 percent increase.”
The Commerce Minister emphasized that “GIT’s facilities include a world-class gem and jewelry laboratory that is supervised by the Thai government. Staffed with highly experienced gemologists and equipped with the world’s most advanced instruments, GIT’s services are trustworthy and widely recognized in the worldwide industry. Consumers can be confident that every piece of jewelry certified by GIT is trustworthy and is qualified according to the accompanying Gem and Jewelry Certification document. The institute has selected gem, gold and jewelry shops and businesses that pass the qualifying standards to participate as members of the program to receive gems and jewelry certifications from GIT as well as other numerous benefits. Currently nearly 140 companies have applied for membership to this program, with 68 passing the initial standard who will be awarded certificates today. Within 2018, GIT aims to expand membership of the BWC program to 500 companies, targeting cities such as Bangkok, Chanthaburi and other key tourist destinations.”
Duangkamol Jiambutr, Director of GIT adds that, “For buyers looking to purchase quality products and jewelry, they will be more at ease to discover the BWC sticker that is displayed in front of shops qualified for this program. The QR code may be scanned for details about the shop, then, more QR codes on the products may also be scanned for the certification on specific pieces of jewelry. Consumers can ask for physical copies of the certification from the shop to match the slogan of the program: Buy With Confidence, Look for GIT certificate to ensure the products on sale and Buy With Confidence.”
Should any issues arise between buyers and shops in the BWC program, buyers may make a complaint at hotline 1166 (Office of the Consumer Protection Board) 1155 (Tourist Police Bureau) or 1569 (Department of Internal Trade) which are partners of the institute
“We have a strict standard in selecting businesses as members of the program, and consumers can trust that products with the BWC symbol matches international standards according to GIT certification. If any problems arise, partners of GIT are ready to assist buyers immediately,” says Jiambutr.