By Nawara Fattahova

KUWAIT: Kuwait’s Minister of Commerce and Industry Dr Abdullah Al-Salman issued a new ministerial decision earlier this week regarding precious handmade crafts and jewelry, imposing new regulations, namely tagging each displayed piece with a price. The precious jewelry commercial shops should tag the piece they sell with fixed price, and the price should be registered in the shop’s commercial record, the ministry explained.

The new decree that regulates the way gold and jewelry are sold in Kuwait was recently published in Kuwait Al-Youm official gazette. According to the decree, which went into effect on May 9, 2021, jewelry shops are obliged to place a label on each piece of gold jewelry that includes the following:

* Name of the company
* Barcode connected to an electronic system
* Karat
* Type of gold
* Weight
* The making charge
* Type of gems used

Regarding silver and platinum jewelry, the label on each piece should include the same information as for gold pieces; in addition, the total price of the piece should be mentioned on the label. For other precious jewelry, the label should include the name of the company, barcode connected to the electronic system, description of the gem (weight, color, cut and quality), karat, type and weight of the metal.

The ministry decree also mentions that some pieces are sold separately due to their special nature, so they should be placed in a separate and visible part of the shop. Each of these pieces should have a label including the name of the company, barcode connected to the electronic system, weight, type of metal and the description of the gem or stone if available.

Kuwait Times visited more than 10 gold shops in old Salmiya gold market, but none of them were aware of the new decree. They were only aware of ministerial decree 283/2019, which obliges shops to place a label stating the making charge. This making charge differs depending on the country where the piece was made.

At these shops, there was one label mentioning the making charges for a box with over 50 different pieces, but from the same country. One shop even told Kuwait Times that for gold pieces from Italy, there is no making charge. The making charge is calculated differently. For small pieces like pendants and most rings, it’s calculated per piece. In this case, the charge starts from KD 7. For larger pieces like bracelets, necklaces, etc, the making charge is calculated per gram, which usually starts from KD 2.

At the Mubarakiya gold market, many shops were aware of the new decree and most of their pieces were marked with detailed labels. Many salesmen said the short notice period of a week was not enough to prepare labels for all the pieces, but they are working on it. Other shops in the market were not aware of the new decree and didn’t have the new labels or only had labels with the making charges. All the shops said inspectors from the ministry of commerce hadn’t visited this week for checks.

At Watiya Complex, some jewelry shops were aware of the new decree, while most were not. Larger stores had labels on all the pieces, some smaller ones had labels on a few items, while some shops didn’t have labels on any piece. The salesmen at all of these shops said the complete details about the sold piece will be printed in the invoice.