KATHMANDU, Sept 22: As more Nepalis switch to imitation jewelries amid rise in the prices of the yellow metal, jewelry traders in the Kathmandu Valley have introduced a wide set of gold-plated jewelry in the market targeting the festive sales.
Chandra K Wagle, proprietor of C K Imitation Jewelers at Makhan said his outlet had introduced several types of gold plated jewelries, ranging from ring, ear ring to pendant, bracelet and necklaces. It had also introduced new designs of imitation jewelries with ruby and other semi-precious stones.
“All these products are manufactured in our own production unit located in Jawalakhel,” said Wagle. Gold plated jewelries are prepared by hand using different kinds of metal, and the firm sources the raw materials from Bangkok, China and India.
Likewise, Shiva Emporium has also introduced new designs imported from Bangkok, Japan, Czech Republic and India.
In C K Imitation Jewelers, imitation rings and ear rings are priced in a range of Rs 250 to Rs 500, while bangles, bracelet and pendant are available at prices between Rs 300 to Rs 800.
Similarly, tilahari and mangalsutra are priced in a range of Rs 500 to 1,500. “Price of these jewelries depends on the quality of beads because different ranges of beads are available in the local market,” Wagle told Republica.
The prices of gold plated jewelries at Shiva Emporium too are tagged between Rs 250 to Rs 11, 000, said Kamal Pareek its proprietor.
According to traders, imitation jewelries have gained popularity in Nepal in recent years. Those are preferred not just by the low and middle income groups, but also by high-end consumers.
“For low and middle income groups, the shift in preference was triggered by a sharp rise in prices of gold,” said Chandra K Wagle, proprietor of C K Imitation Jewelers at Makhan, referring that gold has become expensive by around Rs 15,000 per tola (11.664 grams) over the past one year.
As rise of yellow metal pushed gold jewelries beyond the purchasing capacity of many Nepalis, sales of gold plated jewelries have risen by a quantum volume, Wagle added.
And high-end customers too have shown interest in the gold plated jewelries owing to factors such as concerns over safety and security as well as beautiful designs of imitation jewelries.
“Till few years ago, only middle and low income people were our buyers, but of late high income families too are buying our products voraciously,” said Wagle.
It is not just about pricing and safety, said Pareek, “imitation jewelries too are equally beautiful and come in attractive designs."