Myanmar to put over $200 mln
Myanmar will put quality gems, jade, pearl and jewelry worth about 230 million U.S. dollars at floor prices on sale at a mid-year gems emporium due to open here Wednesday, said officials of the state-run Myanmar Gems Enterprise at a preview of the event Tuesday.
The 16th Mid-Year Gems Emporium, which was originally scheduled to take place a week earlier, will be held at the Myanmar Gems Emporium Hall and the Convention Center on the basis of tender and competitive bidding for 13 days until Nov. 26, according to the Central Committee for Holding Myanmar Gems Emporium.
Over 2,000 foreign merchants from over 20 countries and regions including China, China's Hong Kong, Thailand and Canada are expected to attend the event which will display 5,140 jade lots, 274 gem lots and 259 pearl lots, the committee said.
At the emporium, a jade block weighing 171 kilos valued at the highest floor price of 80 million euros (100 million U.S. dollars) throughout such emporiums ever since and another one weighing 83 kilos and valued at 50 million euros (62.5 million dollars) are also displayed for bidding.
Mid-year gems emporium is introduced in addition to the annual ones to boost the country's foreign exchange earning.
In the 44th annual Myanmar gems emporium held in March this year and attended by 3,421 merchants including over 2,000 foreign ones, 3,652 lots of jade, gems and pearl were sold out, gaining 148 million euros (185 million dollars), according to earlier official statistics.
Again in July this year, a special gem, jade and pearl sale, which attracted even more merchants, about 4,000 including 2,437 foreigners, sold 4,665 lots.
Myanmar started to hold gem shows annually in 1964, introducing the mid-year one in 1992 and the special one in 2004.
Myanmar, a well-known producer of gems in the world, boasts ruby, diamond, cat's eye, emerald, topaz, pearl, sapphire, coral and a variety of garnet tinged with yellow.
There are six mining areas in Myanmar under gem and jade exploration, namely, Mogok, Mongshu, Lonkin/Phakant, Khamhti, Moenyin and Namyar.
To develop gem mining industry, Myanmar enacted the New Gemstone Law in 1995, allowing national entrepreneurs to mine, produce, transport and sell finished gemstone and manufactured jewelry at home and abroad.
According to the state-run Myanmar Gems Enterprise (MGE), of Myanmar's top 10 exporters for 2006-07 which were dominated by the state sector, the MGE stood the third with a gem sale value of 296.9 million dollars after Myanmar Oil and Gas Enterprise and the Myanmar Timber Enterprise.
The government's Central Statistical Organization revealed that in 2006-07, Myanmar produced 20,458 tons of jade and 20.879 million carats of gems which include ruby, sapphire, spinel and peridot, as well as 240,595 mommis pearl.