By Rasana Gasimova
An association of jewellers is expected to be created in Azerbaijan, Economy Minister Mikayil Jabbarov said.
He made the remark at a press conference on "Prospects for the development of the jewellery market in Azerbaijan: problems and opportunities” held in Baku on February 18, local media reported.
Jabbarov noted that the association will be created to continue providing support for jewellery in the country. He also emphasized that certain steps have been taken towards the development of this sphere and a working group on the matter will be created.
Jabbarov said that one of the main tasks of Economy Ministry as part of the country's socio-economic development is to ensure medium and long-term competition of small and medium-sized enterprises in all areas.
"In the context of today's event, this is reflected in tasks such as the precious metals mining development in general and, particularly, the jewellery business,” he noted.
Addressing the event, Chairman of the Agency for the Development of Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) Orkhan Mammadov said that it is necessary to create mechanisms for evaluation and regulation in Azerbaijan's jewellery market.
Mammadov noted that the lack of control over the determination of the quality of precious metals and stones leads to various problem.
He stressed that Azerbaijan has a low level of trust between participants of the jewellery market, so it is necessary to establish regulating instruments to eradicate this problem.
“Consequently, control measures need to be strengthened through the establishment of assessment and regulatory institutions in this sector."
Mammadov also informed that an association of gold refiners will be created in Azerbaijan soon, adding that it will be a significant event while the association itself will play the role of a bridge between the state and business.
Chairman of AzerGold Zakir Ibrahimov noted that Azerbaijan's AzerGold Closed Joint Stock Company sells high-quality 5, 10 and 20 grams ingots and coins made of gold and silver with the fineness of 999.9 at 12 different sales points in Baku.
Ibrahimov noted that the sales of ingots and other products, which depict the Heydar Aliyev Center, Gobustan rock paintings and ornaments of Karabakh carpets, are also carried out through an online platform. He said that the main goal of this project was primarily to support local production and promote the Made in Azerbaijan brand.
Chairman of the State Customs Committee Safar Mehdiyev also spoke at the event. He stressed that a direct dialogue between the state and business is needed in Azerbaijan’s jewellery sector.
Mehdiyev noted that excessive increase in taxes and duties on import operations creates conditions for a legally operating company to prefer smuggling, which complicates the fight against the “shadow economy”.
Note that presently, two companies - AzerGold and Anglo Asian Mining - are operating in the sphere of mining of precious metals in the country.
In January 2020, Azerbaijan produced 404.9 kg of gold and 540.4 kg of silver. This is a 63 percent increase compared to the figures of 2018.
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