‘HK September Fair Better Than Expected’

More serious buying activity, better-quality visitor traffic and exclusive industry events were among the highlights of the September Hong Kong Jewellery & Gem Fair (HKJGF), which concluded on September 22nd, according to Informa Markets, the show organiser.

The seven-day jewellery and gemstone marketplace opened its doors on September 16th at the AsiaWorld-Expo, where a wide selection of diamonds, coloured gemstones and pearls was showcased until September 20th. Finished jewellery collections, tools and equipment, and industryrelated technologies were presented at the Hong Kong Convention & Exhibition Centre section of the fair from September 18th to 22nd.

“Jewellery & Gem World Hong Kong remains the ultimate meeting place for the global jewellery industry,” said David Bondi, senior vice president – Asia at Informa Markets. “What’s happening in Hong Kong now and the uncertainties in the global economy are affecting us in a certain way. Visitor turnout was down but traffic quality was up. We did receive positive compliments from exhibitors and high-quality visitors who engaged in serious trading at the show.”

Visitor numbers from China saw the biggest drop compared with year-ago figures while Japan, Israel and some markets recorded an increase in buyer turnout. Professional buyers also made the most out of their trip by spending more time at the show compared to previous editions.

As the biggest and the last global jewellery sourcing event of the year, the September Fair is an integral part of the industry and for many companies, Bondi continued. “They use the fair as launch pads for their new collections, products and services, which account for a year’s worth of work and promotions from our customers’ side,” he shared. “This only serves to reaffirm our strong commitment to deliver the September Fair to the industry.” Celine Lau, director of jewellery fairs at Informa Markets, added, “The positive feedback that we have received from buyers and exhibitors proves just how important the September Fair is to the jewellery trade. We deeply appreciate the confidence and trust that our industry partners and customers have placed in us, and we look forward to delivering an even more outstanding sourcing experience to the global jewellery community in the years to come.”

Organised by the Gem & Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC), the India Pavilion at the HKJGF included 99 gem and jewellery exporters, who showcased a wide variety of trendy, unique and innovative jewellery made especially for the Asian market. The India Pavilion was located at Hall 11 (Diamond), Hall 10 (Gemstones), and Hall 3C-E (Finished Jewellery).

Pramod Agrawal, chairman, GJEPC, said, “Hong Kong is a significant market for the Indian gem and jewellery industry. India exported $11.12 billion-worth of gem and jewellery products to Hong Kong, in 2018. The Indian contingent is present in large numbers and our effort would be to sustain the market share in the region even for 2019.”

The breadth and depth of products available at the fair left professional buyers genuinely impressed. “I think this show is the biggest in the world. There is more product variety here compared to other fairs,” shared first-time visitor Ludmila Placido of Brazilbased M. Frazao Atelier.

Professional buyer Nicolas Kriukov of Chile-based Delphisk described the fair as “amazing”.

“There are a lot of gemstones at this show, and I have never seen anything quite like it,” Kriukov said. The September Fair drew visitors from around the world, including buyer delegations from South America, China, Poland, Russia and Vietnam.

The 2019 edition of the fair saw an increased presence of serious buyers, according to exhibitors.

“People thought no one will come because of the [public incidents] but we’ve had buyers from Japan, Taiwan, Vietnam, Australia, Israel and India. There were also a few from mainland China,” said Sanjay Shah of Indiabased J.B. & Brothers Pvt. Ltd., “We consider the September Fair a very significant event in the trade because it is an effective platform for buyers and sellers to meet, inspect new inventories and get together as an industry.”

India Design Gallery Makes A Splash

This year, the India Pavilion at HKJGF featured an exclusive India Design Gallery, which showcased the winning pieces of The Artisan Awards 2019. Based on the Cosmos theme, the jewellery featured a variety of cosmic elements in intricately crafted rings, pendants, earrings, bracelets and more.

“The India Design Gallery highlights some of the finest contemporary jewellery available from India today. The jewellery, designed and manufactured in different parts of India, has one thing in common— it is timeless jewellery for the world. Indian jewellers and craftsmen cater to the most demanding customers across the globe. India’s ability to satiate any kind of jewellery requirement has always amazed the world. This has been possible due to the industry’s willingness to embrace and adopt the latest technology,” said Colin Shah, vice chairman, GJEPC.

The Artisan Awards, organised by the GJEPC, rewards the best in jewellery design and celebrates the highest level of artistry, innovation and individuality.

Talking about the jewellery pieces showcased at the India Design Gallery, Milan Chokshi, convener of the promotion, marketing & business development sub-committee, GJEPC, said, “Every jewellery piece at the India Design Gallery is a manifestation of the designer’s vision. The Artisan Awards is a carefully crafted and curated intellectual property of GJEPC that gives Indian designers an opportunity to unleash their sheer talent and shine. As part of the design galleries across the world, these pieces will be a showcase of India’s ascent as a dominant player in the world of jewellery design.”

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