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Sunday, July 15, 2012

ICA Signs Agreement to Set Up Colored Gemstone and Jewelry Center in China

Letter of Intention signed by (From left) Derik Wang, general manager of China Mineral & Gem Exhibition Co., Ltd., Wilson Yuen, ICA president, and Li Keming, director of the Administrative Committee of Changsha National Economic & Technical Development Zone. Photo credit: ICA

The International Colored Gemstone Association signed an agreement with the government of the Chinese province of Hunan to establish a national manufacturing and training center for colored gemstones and jewelry in the province's capital, Changsha. The agreement will also provide for the promotion of colored gemstones, jewelry and minerals throughout China and allow the annual ICA Congress to be held in Hunan in 2013.

The “Letter of Intention” was signed Friday in Changsha by officials representing ICA, Gemfields plc., a mining company that specializes in emeralds, and the Changsha National Economic and technical Development Zone.

“This is an extremely significant breakthrough for the ICA and the colored gemstone and jewelry industry,” said Wilson Yuen, ICA president who was part of the signing ceremony. “The Chinese authorities are very keen to see the establishment of a colored gemstone and jewelry center in the country, and the government of Hunan province has agreed to put in place ambitious plans that will see this happen in the near future.”

The signing follows ICA’s recent move of its international headquarters to Hong Kong from New York, to take better advantage of the growing Asian jewelry and gemstone marketplace.

“Chinese jewelry buyers are showing a strong preference for items set with colored gemstones, recognizing the versatility they provide from a fashion viewpoint, and this joint venture will create a large manufacturing base,” Yuen said. “Taken together with the ICA setting up its international headquarters in Hong Kong earlier this month, these are exciting times for members of the ICA. They will benefit from a very strong base in the region and the supply of real-time information from our locally based staff. And now the gemstone center in Changsha will give them a direct connection with local manufacturers looking for a supply of a wide range of gemstones.”