Hit by the multi-year high inflation across key markets and slowing global economy, both exports and imports of gems and jewellery recorded double-digit decline in October. (DC file image)
Chennai: Hit by the multi-year high inflation across key markets and slowing global economy, both exports and imports of gems and jewellery recorded double-digit decline in October.
Gross exports of gems and jewellery were down 22.44 per cent at $3134.85 million in the month of October and gross imports declined 24.20 per cent to $1481.45 million.
Cut and polished diamond exports were down 26.12 per cent in October.
In the first seven months of the fiscal, gold and silver jewellery recorded some growth, but cut and polished diamond exports declined during the April-October period.
Rough diamond imports were down 1.2 per cent in value terms and 27.3 per cent in volume terms between April and October 2022 against the year-ago period. Similarly, cut and polished diamond exports were down 5.54 per cent during the seven-month period.
"The slowdown in Europe, the interest rate hike in the US and the zero Covid policy in China are challenges for the export sector," said Vipul Shah, chairman of the Gem & Jewellery Export Promot-ion Council (GJEPC). The US is the largest market for Indian gems and jewellery followed by Hong Kong, which is also a gateway to China.
In October, total gold jewellery shipments were down by 20 per cent. Of this, plain gold jewellery declined by 16.5 per cent and studded gold jewellery by 22.7 per cent. During the seven-month period, however, gold jewellery exports managed to record a growth of 9.64 per cent.
After the India-UAE Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) came into force from May 1, 2022, gold jewellery exports had started picking up. The UAE's abolition of the 5 per cent import duty under the agreement had supported gold jewellery exports since May. However, it has not reflected in the exports in October.
Silver jewellery exports too declined 19.62 per cent in October, though it managed to grow by 26.3 per cent in the seven-month period.
Polished lab-grown diamonds and platinum jewellery were the very few categories that recorded growth in exports both in October and the seven-month period. Lab-grown diamond exports grew 22 per cent in the month and 52 per cent in the April-October period. Platinum jewellery grew 7 per cent and 22 per cent during the respective periods.