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Thailand Gears Up for Bangkok Gems Fair

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(Press Release)
BANGKOK, THAILAND – Preparations are underway for the 57th Bangkok Gems and Jewelry Fair (BGJF), which is set to distinguish Thailand as the “golden gateway” to ASEAN. Asia’s second largest gems and jewelry trade show – and the fifth largest globally – will be held at Bangkok’s IMPACT Exhibition and Convention Center from Feb. 24-28.

The biannual trade fair attracts tens of thousands of buyers from all around the world, including the US, EU, Russia, China, South America, ASEAN and the Middle East, as well as more than 30,000 visitors. Organizers anticipate gross export revenues to top $12.8 billion.

More than 1,500 exhibitors with more than 3,000 booths attended the 56th BGJF last September, and despite providing an additional 3,500 booths this year, organizers say that commercial space for the 57th BGJF is running out fast, so exhibitors are urged to register right away.

“The objective of the fair is for foreign buyers to come and place orders, which is why the fair is held twice a year,” says Mr. Somchai Phornchindarak, chairman of the Gems, Jewelry and Precious Metal Confederation of Thailand.

Mr. Suttipong Damrongsakul, president of the Thai Gem and Jewelry Traders Association (TGJTA), believes the 57th BGJF will showcase the country’s expertise. “We would like to encourage new innovation from exhibitors, as we want to present to foreign buyers the potential of Thai gems and jewelry companies,” he says.

Chantira Jimreivat Vivatrat, the deputy director-general of the Department of Trade and Promotion (DITP) sees a glittering future for the sector. “The government is confident of the potential of Thai businesses in the gem and jewelry industry. Various measures and incentives have been introduced to facilitate trading.”

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One such measure has been the lifting of 20 percent tax on imported gems and jewelry sold at the 57th BGJF. Foreign exhibitors can import and sell gems and jewelry from other countries duty-free, while local exhibitors can reduce their prices through reduced imported costs.

Mr. Somchai says the move is part of the Thai government’s ongoing support of the industry. “The government has been with us every step of the way, helping to promote exports as well as developing overseas markets via trade fairs, road shows and exceptional exhibitions. All these changes predict a gleaming future for all.”

Mr. Suttipong believes the move will help propel Thailand to become the “golden gateway to the gems and jewelry industry of ASEAN – a region burgeoning with a 600 million population.”

However, the import duty-free incentive is only for exhibitors endorsed by TGJTA, non-endorsed vendors will still pay the standard 20 percent import tax. Moreover, 7 percent VAT still applies to all exhibitors, local and foreign. However, another government concession is the Zero VAT privilege, in which buyers of rough gems and raw materials are exempted from paying the 7 percent tax.

A series of design pavilions, including the DITP’s Thai Design Pavilion and one organized by Gemsfield UK, will showcase some of the finest jewelry from around the world. The 57th BGJF will also include trade promotion activities such as seminars, contests, trend updates and special offers.

Tight security measures have been put in place to ensure the safety of exhibitors, with more than 500 security personnel and more than 560 CCTV cameras at the fair. But Lieutenant Colonel Sataporn Sanguansuk of the Tourist Police assures that such measures will not “affect the trading atmosphere and make exhibitors and buyers feel uncomfortable.”

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This year BGJF will also have its own mobile application, which will enable buyers to connect with sellers, as well as providing a floor plan of all exhibitions. A shuttle service will be available to and from Bangkok’s five-star hotels to give added convenience to buyers and sellers alike.

The fair will be held at Challenger Hall 1-3, Impact Muang Thong Thani, Bangkok between Feb. 24-28 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

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