Sustainability driving consumers’ choices in jewellery purchase

Italy has a long-standing reputation for designing and manufacturing the highest quality jewelry and watches. Made in Italy Jewels are appreciated all over the world – 90% of the national jewellery productions  is exported abroad – for their elegant design, craftsmanship and quality. The Italian jewelry sector is nowdays committed to responsible sourcing and is seeking to reduce waste and carbon footprint, embracing sustainability, ethics and transparency. 

To discuss about the future of the luxury market and how it is evolving towards a more sustainable approach,  the Italian Trade Agency (ITA), in cooperation with the Embassy of Italy in the UAE, the Consulate General in Dubai and the Italian Commissioner’s Office of the Italy Pavilion at Expo 2020 Dubai, gathered a panel of industry experts at the Italy Pavilion’s Amphitheatre at Expo 2020 Dubai yesterday. 

The 10th appointment of the Innovation Talk  titled “The Italian Sustainable Jewelry” was moderated by Maurizio Forte, Director of Made in Italy Promotion Department, Italian Trade Agency, Rome Head Office; included  Lorenzo Zanni, Technological Dept. University of Siena; Marco Carniello, Global Exhibition Director, Italian Exhibition Group; Licia Mattioli, CEO, Mattioli Gioielli; and Lelio Gavazza, Executive Vice President, Bulgari. H.E. Nicola Lener, Ambassador of Italy to the UAE, also attended the event and shard with the public his closing remarks.

Introducing the Italian jewellery sector and talking about the challenges and role of sustainability for Made in Italy jewellery Prof. Lorenzo Zanni, Technological Department. University of Sienasaid: “Social sustainability can not be separated by environmental sustainability. It is very important to communicate the meaning of the jewelry made in Italy, where social sustainability and environmental sustainability are linked.

We have a system of production that is based on small medium sites firms – most of them are craftsmen – so it’s an artisan approach and when we have to manage the social sustainability strategy, we have to consider that small, medium size firms have different problems and strategies compared to large corporation. We have to implement strategies that are valid, both for large corporation and for small medium size firms.”

Talking about the trade-fairs industry and the role of Dubai, Marco Carniello, Global Exhibition Director, Italian Exhibition Group, said“Tomorrow we are opening JGT (Jewellery, Gem and Technology) Dubai, the newest B2B jewellery trade-show organized by Italian Exhibition Group and Informa markets, two of the biggest players in the event industry in the world, in cooperation with the Italian Trade Agency.

Italy will be present not only as a co-organizer, but it will be present with more than a hundred companies, from manufacturers of golden jewellery to technology providers, from brands to producers of semifinished products.

As we have seen in the market and in other top international trade shows, like at Vicenzaoro, Italian companies are more and more leading the way to sustainability in jewellery and at JGT Dubai the buyers will have the chance to discover it.

We choose Dubai because it has a great potential. Dubai is a business hub, and it will become definitely one of the top business hub in jewellery as well, leading with innovative solution, digitalization and more and more business opportunities”

Sharing his view on the future of the sector, Lelio Gavazza, Executive Vice President, Bulgari “The luxury market in the Middle East is an extremely interesting market for all jewelry brands. A market that has radically changed from pre-covid times.

Pre covid it was a market where loca consumers used to buy in Euope or in their tavel destinations, while Dubai was attracting tourists who were coming for leisure to the country. The pandemic has led to a reversal of the shopping habits; the locals have started buying more and more in their home countries – UAE, Qatar, Saudi Arabia – and the lack of tourists – mostly Chinese transiting through Dubai – has led to a shortage of purchases made by external consumers. These habits at opposite poles will undergo a sort of melting in the post -Covid era and we will still see local consumers buying more and more in the local market as well as tourists .

In the Gulf countries sustainability is becoming a fundamental asset for the development of the business and it’s based on three main pillars: the link with the local communities, a 100% controlled supply chain to guaranteethe traceability of the raw materials (eg. diamonds, stones, gold) but above all the tradition and the know-how of the brands that transfer to local communities the ability to develop the districts.”

The Innovation Talks are a platform to foster the dialogue between Italy and UAE initiated by the Embassy of Italy to the UAE last year with InnovItaly and that will continue after Expo2020. Each talk feature highly-regarded personalities from both Italy and the UAE invited to discuss issues related to Expo 2020 Dubai’s weekly themes and the trade fairs ITA is participating in around the Emirates.