India and the US have recently agreed to mutually support and cooperate in gem & jewellery sector. The measure, considered as one of the major jewellery export booster for India will also greatly enhance India’s quality of finished goods. Joint ventures between US retailers and Indian manufacturers will ensure quality products at the most competitive prices.
Federation of Indian Chamber of Commerce & Industry (FICCI)’s Gems & Jewellery, Luxury, Lifestyle Forum (FGJLLF) and the Indo-American Chamber of Commerce (IACC) have recently announced a joint strategic alliance to promote the setting up of regional jewellery manufacturing hubs. As part of the mandate of this alliance, both the trade bodies have agreed to work towards two very key downstream and upstream developmental roles for the gem and jewellery industry.
At the downstream end, large retailers from the US will work with Indian manufacturers to identify, invest and support the development of large Shared Jewellery Manufacturing Hubs (SJMH) in India while for upstream support, the Indian marketers and brands with the assistance of IACC would be given the opportunity to market their products in the US market, which is estimated at USD 60 billion and is the largest global market for finished jewellery.
Under this strategic alliance, the IACC will set up a Joint Committee to explore the setting up of jewellery manufacturing hubs in various parts of the country. Talks are already on with top US retailers Signet and Helzberg, who have expressed keen interests.
The Secretary General of IACC Ms. Ranjana Khanna says, “Gem and jewellery industry of the US too wants to be a part of ‘Make in India’ movement. Global retailers are looking to boost their presence and contribution in the Indian market. While India possesses the largest work-pool of skilled artisans, the finished quality is still a challenge as is the availability of new technologies and machinery. A typical SJMH will accommodate all these facilities and also provide skill-enhancement training to the artisans, thereby making the Indian finished jewellery into global quality products, which will find a large market both domestically and around the world.”
Besides establishment of the SJMHs would enhance the country’s jewellery exports and generate more job opportunities. The hubs are also likely to improve the working conditions for millions of artisans across the country. The partnership deal is likely to closely connect India and the US in gold and jewellery business. The cooperation deal aims to set up at least 3 to 5 manufacturing hubs over the next 3 to 5 years.
A recent survey conducted by PwC and IACC has revealed that with India increasing focus on developing manufacturing hubs, there is a significant opportunity for the US companies to bring in technological expertise in sectors like gem and jewellery.
The survey says that the Indo-US tie-up in the gem and jewellery sector can be a win-win situation for both the countries as on one hand the jewellery hubs can work as captive production units for the US retailers and on the other hand Indian manufacturers can get advantage from the global expertise of their US counterparts.
India’s Gem & Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC) has also been working to strike greater Indo-US Business deals by organizing Indo-US Jewellery Business Development Conference.
Mr. Vipul Shah, GJEPC’s Chairman says, “We visualized this type of event as an on-going platform for members of this most critical link in the international fine jewellery supply chain. The continuation of such conferences will help build one-on-one sourcing relationship and address broader issues to increase efficiency and profitability within the sourcing process.”
Posted by Suresh Chotai