Thai gems and jewellery exports glitter as global economy recovers


Thailand’s exports of gems and jewellery shot up 37.01 per cent year on year in March over the previous year, according to a report on Wednesday. 

The exports were worth US$739.13 million, the Gems and Jewellery Institute of Thailand (GIT) said.

Including gold, the country's gems and jewellery exports in March were worth $3.40 billion, up 341.39 per cent year on year, said GIT director Sumed Prasongpongchai.

"In the first quarter, the country's gems and jewellery exports were worth $1.89 billion, up 39.96 per cent year on year," he said. "The total export value, including gold, was $5.48 billion, up 203.93 per cent year on year."

He said the rise in Thailand's gems and jewellery exports could be attributed to the global economic recovery, the gradual reopening of countries, rising purchasing power and investment expansion.

He added that Thailand has exported gold to cash in on the global increase in the price of gold. Thailand exported gold worth $3.59 billion, up 699.05 per cent year on year.

Sumed explained that many of Thailand's major gems and jewellery export markets have expanded, including the US (46.48 per cent), India (113.98 per cent), Hong Kong (14.77 per cent), Germany (7.97 per cent), United Kingdom (88.29 per cent), Switzerland (82.14 per cent), United Arab Emirates (21.25 per cent), Belgium (29.45 per cent), Italy (129.87 per cent) and Japan (11.22 per cent).

Exports of major products have increased, such as silver jewellery (13.98 per cent), gold jewellery (42.02 per cent), rough diamonds (3.11 per cent), polished diamonds (70.90 per cent), rough gems (27.41 per cent), polished hard gems (48.17 per cent), polished soft gems (50.28 per cent), artificial jewellery (37.62 per cent) and scraps made of precious metals (63.48 per cent), he said.

However, the export of platinum jewellery dropped by 19.78 per cent year on year, he added.

Sumed expected Thailand's gems and jewellery exports to expand further as many countries have eased travel restrictions, leading to an increase in the number of travellers.

"However, it is necessary to monitor the ongoing Russia-Ukraine war that has hiked production costs and inflation, resulting in impact on purchasing power for luxury goods," he said.

"Also, it is necessary to follow the impact from the US Federal Reserve's move to raise the interest rate and the Omicron pandemic," he added.