March 4: The sales of gold jewellery in the domestic market of Nepal have declined due to the rise in inflation rate and the Covid-19 pandemic. As a result, gold traders have started exporting gold ornaments abroad. According to the Customs Department data, entrepreneurs have been exporting jewellery from the beginning of the current fiscal year.
The last time Nepal exported gold jewellery was in FY 2016/17. Gold jewellery items of 615 kg were exported to China in FY 2016/17. Since, then Nepal had not exported gold jewelry, according to the customs department. However, traders say that a small amount of gold jewellery may have been exported abroad during the period.
The data from the department show that the large-scale export of gold jewellery started only from the beginning of the current fiscal year.
According to the statistics of the department, in the first 7 months of the current fiscal year, gold jewellery worth Rs 156.769 million have been shipped abroad. During this period, 12 kg of gold jewellery have been exported.
Krishna Bajagain, a senior officer at the Trade and Export Promotion Center, informed that Nepal has recently started exporting gold jewellery.
"Until last year, there was not much export of such jewellery. However, it is growing this year," he informed.
Jewellery worth Rs 17.37 million were exported in the first month of the current fiscal year.
According to the department, Nepal is currently exporting gold jewellery to Australia, Hong Kong, and the United States.
Lately, the number of Nepali nationals settling in Australia, Honk Kong and the USA has been growing.
President of the Federation of Nepalese Gold and Silver Dealers Association Manik Ratna Shakya informed that gold ornaments are demanded by the Nepalis living abroad.
He informed that the demand for gold is growing among Nepali nationals living abroad. "They prefer jewellery made in Nepal," he added.
He informed that some businessmen have been exporting jewellery made in Nepal through their business partners abroad. Apart from this, Nepalis who go abroad also carry gold jewellery through 'hand luggage’, Shakya shared.
"Looking at the current growth, it seems that the export of gold jewellery will also increase in the coming days. Therefore, the government needs to immediately increase the quota of gold import," he added.