Gemstone association follows market while small NY office remains.
The International Colored Gemstone Association (ICA), has relocated its headquarters to Hong Kong following the boom in demand for coloured gemstones in Asia, something it says it was to have “closer touch” with.
The ICA, which until now has been headquartered in New York, said the decision to relocate to the other side of the world was not an easy one.
Its president Wilson Yuen said: “This was not a decision that we made easily, and it followed a great deal of debate.
“After all, our international offices have been based in New York for many years. But we felt that we could not ignore the trends that are sweeping our industry, and the global economy in general.”
While the ICA will maintain a smaller presence at a new location in New York, it has chosen to move to Hong Kong in reaction to the rapidly expanding Asian markets. The ICA said it hopes to “actively participate in the further development of the coloured gemstones and jewellery industry in the region”.
The Hong Kong office will be led by both English- and Chinese-speaking staff, which will help to expand its membership in Asia.
“Asia in general, and China in particular, is claiming a larger role in international business, and it is imperative that we are based in the heart of the region to enable us to provide a comprehensive service to our membership and to the industry,” added Wilson.
The transition is being overseen by the ICA’s former executive director Barbara Wheat.
The offices are located in Hong Kong’s gems and jewellery manufacturing district.