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GJEPC Identifies Priorities for 'Make in India' Program

Jan 2, 2015 10:24 AM   By Zainab Morbiwala
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RAPAPORT... Since becoming the Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi has been working toward strengthening the "Make in India" program to instill a sense of pride in Indian-made products and, ultimately, boost the export sector.

Various industries have embraced this initiative and are  expanding their manufacturing initiatives, especially the gem and jewelry sector. Speaking with Rapaport News,  Vipul Shah, the chairman of the Gem & Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC), noted that the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP) of the Ministry of Commerce and Industry conducted a workshop on December 29, at which time the group shared its plans.

"Based on what we discussed and shared, we have framed a plan of action specific to give a boost to the gems and jewelry sector. The decisions were undertaken in association with input from other bodies, such as Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) and All India Gems and Jewellery Foundation (AIGJF)," Shah said.

The GJEPC devised a framework covering three years that includes the recommendations and suggestions that originated at the World Diamond Conference in Delhi earlier in December.

In the first year of the plan, the GJEPC would strive to implement the much-awaited turnover taxation system for the Indian diamond industry  and a Special Notified Zone in Bharat Diamond Bourse to facilitate rough diamond trading on a consignment basis.

Additionally, the GJEPC will champion India as  a global diamond trading hub by further developing hard skills and talent, while working with the government to commission exploration programs and surveys to determine the availability of rough gemstones in the country.  The government may spearhead initiatives to legalize current mining activity through licensing and develop a regulatory framework for new mining and exploration projects.

GJEPC’s charter to promote the "Make in India" program follows:

Action Plan in the First Year

--  Implementation of a turnover-based taxation system;
-- Implementation of a Special Notified Zone in Bharat Diamond Bourse under the supervision of GJEPC to facilitate the movement of rough diamonds on a consignment basis by Reserve Bank of India-approved overseas diamond miners;
-- Hike in drawback rates for gold and silver in the backdrop of prevailing 10 percent import duty;
-- Abolish import duty on cut and polished colored gemstones;
-- Establish common facility centers across the country;
-- Expand skill development activities for the gem and jewelry sector;
-- Include the gem and jewelry sector under Interest Subvention Scheme;
-- Separate ITC HS Code for man-made diamonds to protect the interest of natural diamond industry.
Action Plan for the Next Three Years

-- Persist with direct procurement of rough diamonds and colored stones through government interaction;
-- Commission exploration program and surveys to  ascertain the availability of rough diamonds and colored gemstones in India;
-- Skill development program may be aggressively extended and expanded in the entire country;
-- Government may spearhead initiatives to legalize current mining activity through an appropriate licensing framework and develop a regulatory framework for new mining and exploration;
-- Formation of a  convention center in Mumbai;
-- Promote ties with jewelry centers such as Italy and Turkey;
-- Tap other potential markets for gems and jewelry products.

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Tags: diamonds, GJEPC, Jewelry, make in india, Manufacturing, marketing, Zainab Morbiwala
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