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Thai Jewellers seeks financial support from the government

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The jewellery industry of Thailand has urged the government to provide financial support of at least 50 bln baht to the gems and jewellery industry, which has been hit hard by the coronavirus outbreak, to enable producers to stay in business and retain skilled labour, according to a report in Bangkok Post. 
 Mrs Duangkamol Jiambutr, director of the Gem and Jewelry Institute of Thailand (GIT), said local manufacturers face a lack of liquidity because most allocated cash to buy raw material stocks such as precious stones. She explained, "The pandemic has taken a heavy toll on the gems and jewellery industry in many countries, especially in major markets like China, Hong Kong, Europe and the US. Worldwide lockdown measures have resulted in the closure of many retail jewellery shops, while a sharp drop in international tourists seriously hit the industry's revenue.”
She added that large manufacturers are likely to maintain their business until the end of this year, but small operators can last only one or two months longer without help.
"Easing liquidity, in particular, will help retain skilled labour in the gems and jewellery industry," Mrs Duangkamol said. "Keeping skilled workers on is crucial, as most of them are from the northern and northeastern part of Thailand and are unlikely to keep using their skills once they leave to go back home to work in the farm sector or other careers."

Aruna Gaitonde, Editor in Chief of the Asian Bureau, Rough & Polished