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Survey Notes Challenges Facing Females in India’s Jewelry Industry

Jul 24, 2012 2:45 AM   By Dilipp S Nag
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RAPAPORT... Female entrepreneurs in India’s gems and jewelry industry face several hurdles as ‎traditional values often hinder their progress.‎  A survey on Women Entrepreneurs in Gems & Jewellery Sector, conducted by FICCI Ladies ‎Organisation (FLO), noted some of the obstacles restricting female-led operations, including ‎difficulty procuring raw materials and finding skilled manpower in each of the manufacturing, ‎marketing and retailing aspects of their businesses. ‎

FLO questioned women who have been in the ‎industry for more than 10 years as well as newcomers for the survey. A majority of the respondents from small- ‎and medium-size enterprises noted it is difficult for them to obtain quality products such as ‎gemstones, particularly in Delhi, because of the traditional mindset of people in ‎the industry.‎

Other concerns included the low wages prevalent in the industry, its hesitance to train staff, as ‎businesses feel threatened by them, and a general fear of poaching and sharing internal ‎practices. The survey added that financing options are inadequate and respondents stressed ‎that more needs to be done to sustain the industry’s competitive edge globally.‎

The survey showed that there is a growing need to modernize the sector in line with ‎international trends. FLO explained that the rising spending capability of the Indian consumer ‎has made gems and jewelry a lucrative business opportunity for women entrepreneurs and ‎that most of the survey participants view the industry as a very profitable sector as their ‎businesses are thriving.‎

FLO recommended that the government should formulate policies to encourage gems and ‎jewelry as a career opportunity for women and increase training initiatives so that skilled ‎manpower is easily available in India. The respondents suggested that skills enhancement ‎centers should be set up to help develop skills.‎

The organization added that the government should introduce specific measures for women ‎entrepreneurs to encourage them to tap the growing potential of this sector, particularly given ‎the growth of branded jewelry in the country.  ‎

The survey concluded that female entrepreneurs across India should be provided with a ‎platform to gain better access to national and international markets, develop partnerships with ‎value chain operators, and network with businesses in related industries.‎
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Tags: Branded jewelry, diamond, Dilipp S Nag, FICCI Ladies Organization, FLO, gems, Gems & Jewelry, Gold jewelry, India, Jewelry, Rapaport, women
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