August 18, 2016

Gold foil making businessmen suffer from the high price of gold

Workers make goil foil traditionally in Mandalay. Photo: Aung Thant Khaing
Workers make goil foil traditionally in Mandalay. Photo: Aung Thant Khaing

Gold foil makers are suffering from losses because of the record high price of gold up to over Ks800,000 per tickle. Some gold foil making businesses are forced to suspend, said U Aung Kyaw Myint, the proprietor of Shwe Hninsi gold foil making business.
Myanmar’s gold price in July has risen by around Ks100,000 per tickle when compared to that in December, 2015. World gold price is US$1,350 per ounce as of 31st July, 2016 whereas local gold price, Ks843,000 per tickle. The gold price was around Ks740,000 per tickle in December, 2015 at the domestic gold market.
When people place order for gold foils, tenders are being offered at Ks50,000 higher than the market price. Unexpectedly, the gold price has turned upward, making some entrepreneurs suspend their businesses. The owners of the gold foil making business cannot help but just make the gold foils at the ordered price. They are adversely affected by the sharp changes in gold price, he added.
Some placed order at a prevailing price of around Ks700,000 whereas the current market price of gold is around Ks840,000. Currently, they are forced to be loss-making to fulfil the requirements of number of gold plates at the pagodas at the price at which they won the tender.
Some collectively bid tender in a group of eight people as they cannot afford to bid tender individually. Even if those who make advanced purchasing of pure gold suffer losses, those who make gold foil purchasing the gold at the prevailing market price cannot even raise their heads. The suspension in some gold foil making business renders the labours jobless, he continued.
Those who are engaged in gold foil making businesses are found only in Myetparyat, Mandalay. There are currently over 100 businessmen who are doing this business on a commercial scale whereas over 50 businessmen, on a manageable scale in this gilding industry.
Local gold price is positively related to the world gold price and the currency exchange rate. However, in the event of exchange market being less dependent upon US dollar, Myanmar gold price is usually stable despite gold price being high in the world market.—Aung Thant Khaing


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