Kolkata, Apr 9: Following the coronavirus outbreak, the gems and jewellery sector in the country has come to a complete standstill as jewellery and lifestyle stores are closed across the country. This is an industry which contributes 7% of GDP and employs more than 5 million people, an ICC statement on Thursday.
The gems and jewellery industry is predominantly wedding-driven. But due to coronavirus such events have been cancelled and wedding shopping has come to a halt despite the ongoing wedding season. India's average long-term gold demand is likely around 850 tonnes because of its affinity to gold due to economic and social requirements. In spite of the gold demand predicted to be in the range of 700-800 tonnes in 2020, the volatility coupled with higher prices impacted the demand severely before the coronavirus outbreak.
Now purchases are estimated to plummet 30 per cent in 2020 from the 690 tonnes last year, according to reports, with the economic impact of the virus expected to be negative on employment and income. The economic situation of the gems and jewellery industry has taken a severe beating but the most affected are the daily wage workers, as they are jobless due to the shutdown.(UNI)