KOCHI: Roadshows for the Kerala Gem and Jewellery Show (KGJS) 2008 (between November 14 and 16 at Hotel Le Meridien) kicked off in Kochi on Sunday with the release of the Malayalam version of the brochures for KGJS.
The holding of the roadshows in Kochi has special significance too because the South of India is considered a jewellery hub in the country. Kerala is particularly noted for its fondness for gold and gold ornaments.
According to information from the organisers of the Show, Kerala accounts for 20 per cent of India’s gold consumption annually.
About 500 kgs of gold jewellery is manufactured in the State. and a third of this is sold to sellers outside the State.
There are more than 5,000 gold and gold jewellery retailers in Kerala in addition to the nearly 40,000 artisans engaged in the industry.
Thrissur continues to be one of the hubs of jewellery manufacturing in South India and it accounts for 3,000 large and medium-sized manufacturers.
The industry as a whole employs around two lakh people directly and indirectly.
Around 150 top retailers and wholesalers are participating in the show and it is an unique opportunity for the jewellers in Kerala, according to P. T. Cherian, presidents of the All Kerala Gold and Silver Merchants’ Association.
Mr. Cherian told The Hindu that small retailers who formed bulk of the business in Kerala could not afford to visit shows in foreign countries or even in metros like Mumbai and Kolkatta.
T. Balakrishnan, Principal Secretary, Industries released the brochure and T. O. Sooraj, Director of Industries and Commerce launched the KGJS website.
Vice-President of the World Gold Council K. Shivaram and Mr. Cherian were among those present at the function.
The show is also an opportunity to showcase the best designs and latest products from all over the world.
It is being organised by the jewellery magazine, The Art of Jewellery, and presented by the Department of Industries, Government of Kerala in association with All Kerala Gold and Silver Merchants’ Association, Jewellery Manufacturing Association of Kerala and World Gold Council.