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The Zargall 2000 contest

  1. Privatization through stock exchange
  2. Interiew: Asad Ullah Khwaja
  3. SSGC and SNGPL: Good performance
  4. IMF mission briefed in Islamabad
  5. Rescheduling With London, Paris Club
  6. Rescheduling of foreign loan relent to PICIC
  7. The clearance of passenger's baggage
  8. Banking System in Pakistan
  9. The Zergali 2000 Contest

Creating innovative design in jewellery

By Syed M. Aslam
Dec 13 - 19, 1999

The World Gold Council aims to change the face of entire gold jewellery business and trade of Pakistan. Since it entered the country in 1997, WGC, which is the marketing arm of gold miners worldwide with the primary objective of boosting the gold take-off, has organised many events for the first time.

For instance, in 1997, a delegation of Pakistani jewellers attended the Gold Asia Show in Malaysia for the first time as a representative body from Pakistan. In 1998, Pakistan had an exclusive pavilion for the first time at the International Show in Dubai where local jewellers booked export orders of over $ 1 million. Last year WGC launched the first-ever amateur gold jewellery design contest— Zargalli 1999, which received 1,650 designs from over 500 designers. Of these 46 were short-listed and were displayed at exclusive fashion shows in Karachi and Lahore. The six selected designs were given the cash prizes.

The international exposure as well as the Zargalli contest last year helped fuel renewed interest in the gold jewellery locally as the seven participating jewellers each were allowed to fabricate a winning design which drew encouraging response from the buyers at the participating outlets as well as at the roadside exhibitions.

The manager of WGC for Pakistan and Egypt, Yusuf Akhtar Hussain, told PAGE that the launching of Zargalli 2000 is aimed at creating innovative designs in dailywear jewellery to attract the attention of the working women, a segment which has thus remained neglected by the gold jewellers in Pakistan.

He also said that the WGC is aiming to change the way of gold jewellery purchase into impulse buying, a yet unknown phenomenon in the Pakistani market. In addition, he added, WGC has plans to introduce the concept of branded jewellery in Pakistan like that already in vogue in various parts of the world.

Five jewellers, four from Karachi— A.K. Motiwala, Ar-Raheem, Chhotani and New Ruby— and one from Lahore— Karat, will be participating in the Zargalli 2000 contest. The contest is open to anyone who can draw or has an artistic inclination. WGC intends to work with the trade and the government to help boost gold sales in Pakistan which is the ninth top gold consuming nation of the world.

The annual gold consumption has constantly increased since WGC begun its operations in Pakistan in 1997— from 53.7 tonnes in 1996 to 81.8 tonnes in 1997 and 91.2 tonnes in 1998. This year the gold take-off in Pakistan in projected to touch 116.4 tonnes depicting a substantial increase of 30 per cent over the 1997 figures, according to WGC.

The fact that WGC intends to target the working women segment to boost the gold jewellery sales in Pakistan is based on the fact that this particular segment though having a purchasing power was always been neglected for whatever reasons to give jewellery sales a much needed push. The dailywear lightweight jewellery would be competitively priced to help bring this vital segment into the fold of gold trade in Pakistan, Yusuf Akhtar Hussain added.

The gold jewellery designing contest itself would help locate the hidden talents in Pakistan which due to absence of such contests were not able to play their due role to bring innovations to the local gold jewellery trade. The participating manufacturers will turn the designs into gold ornaments to help bring a breeze of fresh air to the overall trade in the country. All these measures would help strengthen the local gold jewellery market which is the most important prerequisite for exports.

In addition, such contests would not only help boost sales of gold jewellery in the country but also bring it at par with the international standards to help stir increased interest in the foreign markets to promote exports, Yusuf added.

Talking about the thus unheard concept of ‘impulse buying’, Yusuf said that the availability of branded quality jewellery at competitive prices specifically directed at working women segment which can buy it at affordable prices would give a boost to gold jewellery sales in Pakistan for the benefit of not only jewellers but also the government which earns a substantial revenue from gold imports. It would good for the overall economy of the country, he added.

The WGC is sure that the Zargalli 2000 contest will be an even greater success than its predecessor to discover latent talents in jewellery designing which with the help of the participating jewellers would give a much needed boost to bring in a fresh air of creativity in the gold jewellery business. The fact that it has been able to motivate the jewellers and the trade on one hand and the potential designers on the other to come together to break the monotony in the jewellery market is an indication that the gold take-off in Pakistan will increase in the years to come for the benefit of the jewellers, buyers and the government.

WGC has also held jewellery design workshops in Karachi and Lahore with the support of the Export Promotion Bureau. It has brought foreign experts in jewellery manufacturing to help better educate the local talents which until now have not been able to find an outlet to express their artistic inspirations.