The Jewel of Africa has described Zambia’s trade agreement with the United States of America under the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) as a success story for the country’s gemstone industry.
Jewel of Africa Director of Sales and Marketing Rashmi Sharma says her company will continue to maximize the trade incentives that AGOA provides for the U.S to market various gemstone from Zambia.
Speaking at the exhibition held at the Embassy of Zambia in Washington D.C, Ms. Sharma said Zambia’s gemstone industry has competed favorably in the U.S market and its emerald is the best on the world market.
Ms. Sharma also said Jewel of Africa recently won an auction of emeralds from Kagem which they have embedded in a Zambia DNA.
She said Zambia currently accounts for about 40 percent of the world’s emerald on trade.
“The world is recognizing Zambia’s emerald as the best in the world. Emeralds are now ranking as number two second from Rubies followed by Diamonds and others.
Zambia is surrounded by countries that are rich in minerals and as a country, we are poised with an abundance of mineral wealth which are yet to be exploited,” she said.
And Acting Deputy Chief of Mission James Chisenga said Ms. Sharma’s effort to market the gemstones in the USA has put Zambia on the world map in the gemstone industry through the penetration of the US market.
Mr. Chisenga who commended Ms. Sharma for her commitment to showcase and market the country’s gemstones urged the Zambian jeweler to increase their social responsibility in the communities in which they operate in Zambia.
He said the exhibition of gemstones under Jewel of Africa, has now become an annual event which the Embassy will continue to support.
Among the country’s rich stones that were exhibited included tourmaline, aquamarine, and amethyst.
Part of the proceeds from the sales will go towards supporting a school for orphans in Lusaka’s Garden compound.
The exhibition was attended by a cross-section of patrons in Washington D.C.
This is according to the press statement released by First Secretary-Press and Public Relations to Washington DC Cosmas Chileshe.