Despite multiple business challenges across the globe, India's overall gem & jewellery exports increased by 2.48% in 2022-23 to ₹3 lakh crore as compared to the previous year's exports of ₹2.93 lakh crore.

Growth was seen in segments like polished lab diamonds, gold jewellery, plain gold jewellery, coloured gemstones and silver during the year, says data released by the Gem & Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC).

Provisional gross export of total gold jewellery was at ₹75,635.72 crore ($9,423.31 million) with a growth of 11.13%, compared to exports worth ₹68,062.41 crore in the previous year. Plain gold jewellery exports grew by 17.22% to ₹33,177.86 crore ($4,128.57 million), from ₹28,303.37 crore ($3,796.70 million) last year. Studded Gold jewellery exports grew 6.79% in FY23 to ₹42,457.87 crore ($5,294.74 million). Provisional gross exports of polished lab grown diamonds were valued at ₹13,466.42 crore ($1,679.98 million), a growth of 37.31% over the ₹9,807.56 crore ($1,313.98 million) for the previous year.

"Despite inflation in the U.S., the Russia-Ukraine war, and the lockdown in China for almost 6 months, a key market, the industry has managed to put up a commendable performance," says Vipul Shah, chairman of GJEPC. Global challenges affected the demand for diamonds in India's key markets, including the U.S. and China, though certain regions in Europe and South-East Asia fared well. India encountered difficulties due to inconsistent Russian rough diamond supply and challenges with beneficiation, as countries such as Namibia, Botswana, and Angola prefer to have their rough diamonds cut in their own countries, explains Shah.

India's major export markets are the U.S., Hong Kong and the U.A.E. The implementation of the India-U.A.E. Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) by the Ministry of Commerce & Industry was the main reason for the 17% growth in exports of plain gold jewellery in 2022-23. In the case of Lab-grown diamonds, Vipul Shah says this emerging sector has shown consistent growth in recent years. "The Indian government's research grant of ₹242 crore (announced in FY23 Union Budget) to IIT Madras, spread over five years, would support the development of local manufacturing technology in polished lab diamonds and additionally, the elimination of customs duty on LGD seeds, previously at 5%, would enable India to establish global leadership in the complete production cycle of lab-grown diamonds and jewellery manufacturing," he says.

Provisional gross export of silver jewellery was at ₹23,492.71 crore ($2,932.12 million) in FY23, with a growth of 16.02% from ₹20,248.09 crore ($2,714.14 million) for the previous year. Gross export of coloured gemstones grew 45.44% in the last financial year to ₹3,373.43 crore ($419.63 million) from ₹2,319.41 crore ($311.21 million) for the previous year. Platinum jewellery exports also grew 10.01% to ₹237.73 crore ($29.74 million), shows the GJEPC data.

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