India explores business ties with Morocco in the gem & jewellery sector. With an objective to understand the current business scenario with regard to the gem and jewellery sector, the Gem & Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC) and the Embassy of India, Morocco, jointly organised a one-day seminar the India Global Connect on May 20, 2021.
In this event, manufacturers, exporters and importers of both countries held discussions and decided to initiate a dialogue, explore trade opportunities and project India as a viable sourcing destination.
Morocco is India’s second-largest trade partner from the North African region. Currently, Moroccan global gem and jewellery imports amount to $122 million annually, of which India’s share stands at a mere $2 million.
Gracing the occasion along with other dignitaries, were Rajesh Vaishnav, Indian Ambassador to the Kingdom of Morocco; Suresh Kumar, Joint Secretary, Ministry of Commerce and Industry, Government of India; Abderrahim Belkhayat, Regional Director of the Ministry of Artisans, Morocco; G.K. Pant, First Secretary (Commerce), Embassy of India, Morocco; Khalid Rahil, Director of Heritage preservation and El Hazzaz Driss, President of Morocco Jewellers Federation and Colin Shah, Chairman, GJEPC.
“India has been adding modern techniques with traditional know-how to bring it more in tune with the global market. Similarly, Morocco has been a jewellery powerhouse for many years, and the combination of a low-cost and highly skilled workforce has made it a hub for the jewellery trade. Both countries can benefit tremendously by cooperating, collaborating, and exchanging ideas and expertise. Today’s webinar is a first step towards the same,” said Vaishnaw.
Speaking on the occasion Kumar said, “India Global Connect with Morocco should explore new avenues of trade and also try to understand consumer preferences to enhance the trade between the two countries. India and Morocco have enjoyed cordial and friendly relations and over the years the bilateral relations have witnessed significant depth and growth. However, the gem and jewellery trade between the two countries is insignificant, and we should work together to achieve $150 million trade in this sector.”
The bilateral trade between the two countries amounts to $2 billion and if the potential synergies are tapped through cooperation, the scope for growth could be tremendous.
Shah commented, “Exports/imports of gems and jewellery between the two countries is negligible and needs to be increased, which can enable India and Morocco in further developing their businesses and economy in terms of production, employment, new methods, techniques, etc. We should collaborate for skilling/training. I am happy that we had a very insightful and meaningful discussion today.”
The speakers noted that Moroccan consumers preferred locally made traditional, handmade jewellery for special occasions and for daily wear, women opted for contemporary jewellery — by and large influenced by European aesthetics considering Morocco’s proximity to the region, and its French colonial past.
Mansukh Kothari, Convener, Events, GJEPC added, “For any trade to flourish, it is important that there is constant engagement between manufacturers and buyers. Considering the current scenario, a series of Buyer-Seller meets and interaction through virtual platforms should be explored. I welcome Moroccan traders to visit our flagship shows IIJS Premiere and IIJS Signature, where they can engage with manufacturers for fulfilling their sourcing needs.”
The meeting concluded with Morocco participants requesting for sharing of jewellery manufacturing skills, collaborating on areas such as transfer of technology.