Coloured gemstones have long been an investment class for the discerning individual, particularly women. A recent trip to Bangkok has proved that not only is the rare coloured gemstone industry going strong – it has also rebounded post-covid and been in more demand than ever.
Those in the industry will be familiar with the name Gemfields, owner of Swiss luxury jewellery brand Fabergé and operator of some of the world’s most important coloured gemstone mines. Early humans’ fascination with colour, and desire to own lasting examples of it made them fall in love with gemstones, for their beauty was unwavering.
In a world where people aged, flowers wilted and sunsets disappeared, the vibrance of gemstones remained unchanged. For them, the only logical explanation was that gems were divine, forever linking gemstones to the spiritual world.
Since the liberalisation of mining in the early 1990’s, Zambia has risen to become one of the most valuable emerald sources in the world. The Kafubu mining area is worked by artisanal and small-scale mining operations archetypical of the coloured gemstone industry, as well as one of the world’s largest open-pit mines for coloured gemstones, Gemfields’ Kagem mine.