Jul 25, 2011

Gems auction nets $1.5 billion for Myanmar

Myanmar’s state-sponsored gems auction has reaped another $1.5 billion in foreign exchange despite U.S. sanctions against the industry.

The weekly “Voice” news magazine reported Saturday that 22,317 lots of jade, 284 lots of gems and 355 lots of pearls were sold July 1-13 at the mid-year Gems Emporium .

Some $2.8 billion was earned at the main auction in March and more than $1.44 billion at last year’s mid-year auction. Myanmar is the world's biggest source of precious stones. It produces 90 percent of the world's rubies and is world's the largest jade producer.

Source: AP