CHENNAI: Exports of gems and jewellery has registered a growth of 6.33 per cent to USD 2.49 billion during December 2020 as compared to USD 2.35 billion in the corresponding month of 2019, a senior GJEPC official said.In rupee terms, the sector grew by 9.2 per cent in December 2020 to Rs 18,261 crore.
"Exports have recovered sharply in the last two months and if the trend continues the decline in this fiscal year may narrow down to 20-25 per cent," said Gem & Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC) chairman Colin Shah. In the early months of the fiscal, the sector was down by 80 per cent.
The overall gross exports of the sector remained down by 39.98 per cent to USD 16.53 billion during April-December 2020 period as compared to USD 27.54 billion during the same period last year.
Cut and polished diamond (CPD) exports in December 2020 posted a sharp jump by 38.47 per cent to USD 1.74 billion as compared to USD 1.25 billion in the previous years corresponding month. While, for the nine months period CPD exports stayed negative by 27.13 per cent to USD 10.69 billion.
Gold jewellery exports for the month under review was lower by 35.06 per cent to USD 0.50 billion compared to USD 0.77 billion in December 2019. Shah said that for the April-December period gold jewellery exports were down 67.3 per cent to USD 3.02 billion from USD 9.23 billion for the first nine months of the previous year.
However, silver jewellery exports from April-December 2020 stayed robust growing 50.66 per cent to USD 1.5 billion over the previous fiscal.
For the upcoming budget, the industry has sought reduction in customs duty gold to four per cent from the current 12.5 per cent, withdrawal of tax collected at source (TCS), cut in import duty on polished precious and semi-precious gemstones as well as raise cash purchase limit to Rs 1 lakh.
GJEPC has proposed a hike in import duty on synthetic cut and polished stones to 25 per cent from 5 per cent, reduce the customs duty to 4 per cent and extend the EMI facility.