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   The executives and staff of Bangkok Gems & Jewellery Magazine take this opportunity to wish all our readers, advertisers and customers a happy new year; may 2015 bring success and properity.

   This year, 2015, will mark the commencement of the AEC - the Asean Economic Community - which will bring about regional economic integration, and facilitate cross-border trade.

   The director general of the International Trade Promotion Department, Ms. Nuntawan Sakuntanaga, said the Commerce Mininstry targeted Thai export grownth of 4 per cent to US$239.43 billion (Baht 7.87 trillion) for 2015. Based on the department's target for this year. Thailand's shipments to Asean are expected to grow 5.9 per cent, by 1 per cent to China, by 3 per cent to the US, by 5 per cent to the European Union and Australia, and by 2 per cent to Japan and Africa. Exports to the Middle East are forecast to increase 5 per cent, while stronger grownth of 10 per cent is expected for shipments to India and Russia.

   Meanwhile, forecast 2015 export grownth rates differ from sector to sector, The gem and jewellery industry's export income is expected to expand by 5 per cent to $7.51 billion this year, from about $7.1 billion in 2014. However, the lower price of gold could affect the value of jewellery, while falling fuel prices could negatively affect purchasing power in markets that are major energy suppliers, including the Middle East and Russia.

   The recent report titled "Asia Gems and Jewellery Industry Outlook to 2015 - China Outpacing India as the marketiplace Leader in Asia" offers a comprehensive analysis of the gems and jewellery market in significant Asian nations, namely India, China, Japan, Hong Kong and Thailand.

   The Asia gems and jewellery market has actuslly shown wonderful durability and grownth. The marketplace has been an influential foreign exchange earner, positioning Asia among the largest export markets on the planet. The region has emerged as a centre for diamond and gemstones cutting, and gold production and trading, leveraging on the low labour costs, and skilled professionals.

   Thailand is a leading jewellery producer and exporter. Thailand is one of the foremost manufacturers of sapphire and leading market for processing of coloured stones.Thai gems and jewellery exports have consistently grownth even during times of economic recession. This grownth will primarity be due to an expend increase in gold jewellery sales in the coming 5 years.

   In 2015, it is necessary to closely monitor the monetary and economic policies of major industrial countries, particularly the possibility of an interest rate rises in the US, the additional quantitative easing, the progress over the deflation lessening and the risk of stagnation in Eurozone, as well as the risk of the Chinese economy to register lower grownth than expected.

Cover picture :
This elegant creation, entitled "Taste Memory," was designed by Freeman Johnson, and has been selected as a nominee in the HRD Awards 2015 jewellery design competition being held by HRD Antwerp in Belgium.


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