‘No policy for gold jewellery export’

KATHMANDU: Nepali gold jewellery has the potential to compete in the international market, but it is yet to become a major export commodity due to lack of infrastructure and policy for the sector.

“As gold jewellery is not an exportable item till date, there is no authentic data about its export as it

is exported indirectly through tourists and Nepalis staying abroad,” said Tej Ratna Shakya, president of Nepal

Gold and Silver dealers’ Association

of Nepal (NEGOSIDA). According to him, gold jewellery from Nepal

has great demand abroad due to

its ethnicity and design but until there is an infrastructure development policy the sector cannot take take up its export uin earnest.

In 2003, NEGOSIDA along with the government, conducted some skill development programmes for trained manpower and by 2008 a total of 100 people were trained, said Shakya.

“Currently, we have only internal trade of gold jewellery though the designs of the jewellery manufactured here can compete in the international market,” he said adding that they are trying to coordinate with the government to run more skill development programmes that will give preference from the grass root level.

Gold in Nepal is mainly imported from Dubai, Hong Kong and Australia. There are eight importers of gold in Nepal. “NIC Bank and Standard Chartered Bank are the two banks importing gold while ACE development bank is partially importing gold. ACE imports gold according to the order. There are five entrepreneurs in the market that also import gold in the domestic market,” Shakya said.

According to him, though the price of gold in the international market has fallen this week the price in the domestic market is rising. Gold opened at $953.85 per ounce this week and closed at $949.65 per ounce in the international market. The currency exchange rate on Sunday was Rs 78.10 per dollar, which went up to Rs 78.45 per dollar on Friday.

“The exchange currency rate

of US dollar has increased compared to the Indian currency. This has pushed up our currency rate purchasing cost and due to which although international gold price decreased this week, there was no effect on the domestic market,” Shakya said.

Gold this week opened at Rs 24,065 per 10 gram in the domestic market on Sunday and increased to Rs 24,220 on Monday. Gold was traded for Rs 24,180 on Tuesday. With an increase of Rs 200 on the opening price, gold was traded for Rs 24,265 per 10 gram on Wednesday and Thursday and closed at the same price on Friday.

Meanwhile silver opened at Rs 374 per 10 gram and was traded for Rs 377 per 10 gram on Monday and closed on friday at the same price.