President COPAIR Amna Munwwar Awan attends Sri Lanka’s gemstone exhibition at Dubai Expo 2020-‘Day of Sapphires’
Dubai: Pledging further extension to COPAIR initiative on National Economic Security and its advocacy for Institutionalization of Gemstone Industry in Pakistan. COPAIR research associates and advisors collaborated with Sri Lankan Gemstone Authority and Association and President COPAIR attended a trade and investment session to explore prospects of Pak, Sri Lanka bilateral cooperation in Gemstone Industry during an event held at Dubai Expo. While expressing her views she stated that such events further robust the Gemstone Industry. With reference to Pakistan, She stated that Pakistan holds the fifth-largest gemstone reserves in the world. With this staggering potential, it can become the remedy for our economic soft patch. However, the gemstone industry requires preferential treatment vis-à-vis capital investment and structural reforms, in alignment with the principles of global competitive gemstone markets. Pakistan’s annual gemstone exports are approximately $3.7 billion. It is a dismaying fact that 80% of revenue is generated by this [industry] through exporting raw materials. Whereas, the annual export capacity of only three gemstones comprised 800,000 carats of Ruby, 87000 carats of Emerald, and five billion. In retrospect, a total annual production reported in the late 1970s was over $1 million. Whereas in the year 1948 only five resource minerals were known to exist in any quantity, today at least 16 minerals, including gem materials. As a result, over the years the industry presents the descending trajectory of progress path with looming threats of even complete collapse as it could not even find a place in the top 10 gem exporter’s countries of the Asian Continent. President COPAIR further underlined that the government needs to invest in skill development programs and technology transfer of the gemstone industry. In this regard, the foundation of international standard laboratories, technical training centers at the provincial level would ultimately create skilled Labor for the gemstone industry. She highlighted that the effective exploration of gemstone reservoirs faces setbacks with institutional framework inadequacies. Pakistan’s gemstone industry is driven by dozens of small-scale mines and artisanal. The major impediment includes poor capital investment, insignificant technical expertise, lack of modern technological equipment, and experienced labor entire mechanism in disarrays. There is limited technical, economic, and legal assistance by the designated authorities regarding the mining, processing, and trading mechanisms to the affiliated companies and contractors that need to address to seek the considerable outcomes of this industry. She concluded.