They are followed by Brazil, with 15%; Zambia, 12%; Zimbabwe, 5%, and Pakistan, with 5%; in 2008 US $ 180 million were exported and the industry has grown 25% during the last four years.
The emerald sector in Colombia is located in the eastern belt (Boyacá) and the western belt (Chivor).
Oscar Baquero, president of the National Federation of Emeralds, Fedesmeraldas, one of the organizations that will be present in the first version of Mining 2010 from July 29 to 31 in Corferias, was in charge of evaluating how these precious stones in the country are doing in this industry.
The president of the Federation said that the previous year – due to the economic crisis – the sector’s exports fell by 50 percent, which shows that external sales registered 70 million dollars.
However, Baquero, reported that for this year sales of the product are expected to grow by 10 percent. Colombia’s main export markets are 60 percent for the United States and 40 percent for Asia, where they are distributed to India, Hong Kong and Thailand.
Europe “is a demanding market, which does not report large amounts of Colombian emerald sales, since European consumption trends have varied over the years,” Baquero explained in a statement.
For Fedesmeraldas, the commitment to economic growth goes hand in hand with strengthening social programs, improving the quality of life of miners, new exploration and exploitation techniques in order to attract more investment.
Colombia, the finest emeralds
As interesting data, Fedesmeraldas revealed that Colombia has the finest emeralds in the world and has the largest emerald on the planet.
Asia prefers the Colombian emerald, since the green color is good luck for them and in Creole territory there are stones of 40, 50 and up to 200 carats.
It is estimated that less than 5 percent of the emerald production stays in Colombia and 95 percent is sold abroad.