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GEMS & JEWELLERY >> Trade Leads

Gems & Jewellery

The cutting and polishing of Diamonds and precious stones is one of the oldest traditions in India and the country has earned considerable goodwill, both, in the domestic and international markets for its skills and creativity. India was also the first country to have introduced diamonds to the world. The country was the first to mine diamonds, cut and polish them and also trade them. For around 2,700 years back, i.e. from 9th Century BC to mid 18th Century AD, India was the leading producer of Diamonds.

Gems and Jewellery industry is the leading foreign exchange earner for the country. It is also one of the fastest growing Industries in the country.

It is an artistic and creative industry and in the world no other country could match India in the cutting of gemstones and crafting of beautiful and fine jewellery. The importance and attraction of the Industry can be judged by the fact that over 1 million people are employed in the industry and it is still growing at the rate of approximately 15 % every year.

The biggest advantage that Indian Jewellery has is its low cost. The diamond jewellery, which is produced between $ 60 and $ 90, the overseas importer sells for $ 180. In other words, there is considerable value addition. The current consumption of gold in India is estimated at over 900 tonnes used mostly in 20 / 22 carat jewellery

India accounts for nearly 55% of the world's net exports of cut and polished diamonds in value terms, 90% in terms of pieces and 80% in terms of carats. It is therefore not surprising that there are chances that nine of ten diamonds in the world would have been cut and polished in India. Growth In The Past Three Decades, in this sector is as under:

Cut & Polished Diamonds

India today occupies top position in importing, processing and exporting diamonds. Of the total world exports of 27.25 million carats of cut and polished diamonds, more than 70 % exports are from India.

Exports of the commodity group 'Gems and Jewellery' are

  • Diamonds
  • Precious / Semiprecious stones or colored gemstones
  • Gold jewellery
  • Pearls
  • Non-gold jewellery
  • Synthetic stones Costume / fashion jewellery.

India has only 1% of the total world market of $ 105 billion of jewellery. Margins are high compared to diamond as branding can demand high premiums. India has tremendous potential for jewellery exports. The leading jewellery exporters believe that what has been achieved in diamond exports can be attained in jewellery export too. India has many natural advantages to accomplish this. India has at present, perhaps the largest and the best artisan force for making jewellery in the world.

Gujarat: A Sparkling Success In Diamond Industry

Gujarat accounts for almost 80 % of the diamonds processed in India. Of this, 90 % are processed by about 10,000 diamond units located in and around Surat alone. Rest of the diamond units are located in Ahmedabad, Palanpur, Bhavnagar, Valsad and Navsari.

Surat became a diamond-processing centre as early as 17th century and is today the main diamond city in India. Exports of Gems and Jewellery from Surat alone were in the tune of Rs. 3330 Million in the year 2000-2001. Although Ahmedabad is an export point, bulks of them are traded at Mumbai. Besides, Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council Indian Diamond Institute is also functioning at Surat.

The advantages of investing in diamond processing in Gujarat are:

  1. Low cost, economic and skilled labour
  2. Availability of large number of skilled labour
  3. Easy availability of institutional and Bank finance
  4. Relaxed government rules and regulations
  5. Other competitive world centres like Hongkong, Thailand, Taiwan, Korea, U.S.A., Italy, etc. are becoming costlier with decreasing availability of skilled labour.


Indian hand-made jewellery has a large ethnic demand in various countries with sizeable Indian immigrant population such as the Middle East, South-East Asian countries, USA, Canada and so on. With imported or domestic processed studding, Indian machine made jewellery will also generate demand from non-ethnic jewellery markets abroad.

There are about 25,000 licensed gold dealers and 4,50,000 certified goldsmiths spread throughout the country. India was one of the first countries to start making fine jewellery from minerals and metals. The finest jewellery is made in gold and is studded with precious stones and pearls. Most of the jewellery made in India is hand made. The main centre for Kundan and Minakari jewellery is Jaipur. New Delhi specialises in green and red enamel work.

In jewellery, exports are only 1-2% of the total world market; hence there is good scope for jewellery exports. Evidently, the exports have increased to US $ 1,087 million in 1999 - 2000, registering a growth of 24% over the previous year. For ensuring the growth, Indian industry will have to gear up for developing quality that suits the western states in design, polish and finish of the jewellery.

Apart from jewellery made from gold, there is also an emerging up-market need for platinum jewellery. Demand emerges from women who are more in tune with the international trends in fashion and jewellery. According to the knowledgeable persons in the field of jewellery, the market for this white gold with rich white lustre is growing at the rate of 19%.
Opportunities for Gujarat therefore, include:

  • Manufacturing and marketing gold jewellery and diamond studded Jewellery
  • Manufacturing and marketing of branded jewellery through franchisee outlets
  • Setting up a training institute for Jewellery manufacturing.

>>Industry Association:

>>Central Government Ministry :

>>Export Promotion Council-(INDIA):

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