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GCC visitors to fuel jewellery demand

30
Jan '06
Surging crude oil prices will generate extra income which in turn is likely to fuel demand for gold and diamond jewellery by Gulf Co-operation Council visitors (GCC).

Dubai reports an influx of GCC visitors from Saudi Arabia and Russia to shop for luxury goods brand like Tiffany, Cartier and Chopard, and Italian design jewellers such as Pasquale Bruni and Roberto Coin, at shopping zones like the Mall of the Emirates, officials said.

A new store of retailer Harvey Nichols' will showcase dozens of luxury brands including Milan diamond jeweller Antonini, and H Stern.

Retail sales of diamond jewellery in Gulf, which was around $1.9 billion a year, is set to rise by 12-14 percent this year, predicted Jonathan Chippindale, Marketing Director for the Gulf Diamond Trading Company, a marketing branch of De Beers.

Saudi Arabia accounts for about three-quarter of total GCC diamond jewellery purchases.

Dubai sales is expected to jump by 20 per cent, he said.

Dubai imported 503 tonnes of gold in 2004, and exported 261 tonnes, said Colin Griffith, Chairman of the Dubai Gold and Commodities Exchange (DGCX).

UAE has progressed in recent years to become the second biggest jewellery export destination of Italy, after the US.

Italy's export of gold and silver jewel to the UAE recorded a surge of 27.1 percent year on year, in the first nine months of last year, with sales of €281.3 million.



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