In 1956, our Association made two strategic decisions which had great impact on the jewellery trade. These policies eventually constituted the transactionary characteristics and style of management of the Singapore jewellery shop.
Firstly, at the second meeting of the 15th term of the Association’s Committee on 16 March 1956, Mr Chng Tok Ngam suggested that in order to protect the interests and inculcate the spirit of co-operation among fellow jewellers, standardisation of retail gold price should be implemented so that its rise and fall will be congruous. After discussion, the Association’s Committee approved the proposal and set up a Price Fixing Preparatory Committee. It was formed by representatives from the following groups:
a) Cantonese group: Ban Tai Loy, Ho Cheong, Tin Sing, Weng Cheong, Tai Wah.
b) Teochew group: Seng Mee, Kong Heng, Ming Heng, Poh Heng, Mee Kwong Chye.
c) Hokkien group: Poh Huat, Kim Bian Huat, Kim Poh Hong, Malaya.
d) Hakka group: Ngian Foong, Kwek Fah, Kwong Cheong Long.
e) Hainanese group: Wam Hock.
Secondly, to standardise the price of the repurchase of gold ornaments sold by members.
When Mr Lim Seow Lim and Mr Luo Guo Lin took over the positions of Chairman and vice-chairman respectively in early 1962, a Special Committee meeting was held with other new committee members. As the premises at Neil Road was due for repair, the Welfare Subcommittee was assigned to raise funds for its renovation. Some far-sighted members suggested that our association should instead secure a permanent solution. By selling the old premises and with the money we had, a new multi-storey building could be bought and used.
This was also to avert huge expenses for renovations within the next few years. Funds could be raised if the amount received from selling the old premises was insufficient. With the dedication of the committee and the full support of members, $14,270 was raised.
Together with the $60,000 we received from selling the old premises, we were able to purchase the present premises. We celebrated our 25th Anniversary and opening ceremony of our new premises on 3rd March 1963. It was officiated by our then Minister of Finance, Dr Goh Keng Swee.
With the independence of Singapore in the mid 1960′s, the government began to loosen the Gold Control Act. Every year, members were allowed to tender a fixed amount of gold bars. It was an effort of the government to accelerate gold transactions. Following this was the cancellation of the Gold Control Decree in the early 1970′s so as to allow the free transactions of gold and the smoother flow of its supply.
1977 – 1984
On 2nd January 1977, our Association was informed by the Registrar of Trade Unions that the term “Singapore” which constitutes part of our name should be translated as “新加坡” in Chinese.
It was brought to our attention that the name of our Association appeared archaic. Neither did it fit well into the brisk business environment, nor was it able to reflect the needs of our Association. Amendment of its name to Singapore Jewellers Association was advocated and a resolution was passed. The proposal to change the name of our Association further gained approval at the Annual General Meeting on 7 January 1979. The amendment was approved by the Registrar of Trade Unions and it took effect from 7 October 1980. Our Association had to re-register as a society when we were affected by the Trade Unions Act in 1982. We received the approval from the Registrar of Societies on 23 April 1984.
In response to government’s policy to encourage merchants to go metric for business transactions, “Gold Goes Metric” Contest was organised from 3 January to 2 March 1985, where members sponsored $200,000 worth of gold bars to be won. The chairman of SISIR, Dr Lee Kum Tatt was invited to conduct the draw at Victoria Concert Hall on 30 March 1985.
A series of lucky draws were organised to promote gold jewellery and to elevate the Association’s reputation. The promotion was done through TV programmes & press advertisements from 25 May to 10 August 1993.
On 1 August 1995, the Association initiated the abolition of manufacturing gold loss through press conference and TV interviews with the objective of simplifying gold price calculation and eliminating unscrupulous jewellers from charging high gold loss. Gold loss would be included in the workmanship.
To meet the demands of the business environment, the Executive Committee at a monthly meeting held on 7 September 1998, decided to form a Trade COP (Code of Practice) Working Committee to work on a draft Trade COP. The COP would help to increase the confidence of consumers when buying jewellery and to also protect the interest of our fellow traders.
The Association also launched the Jeweller Trust Scheme on 16 September 1999 in collaboration with Consumers Association of Singapore (CASE) and Retail Promotion Centre (RPC) with the purpose of upgrading the industry’s image.
In the year 2000, the Association collaborated with the then Productivity and Standards Board (PSB) to embark on On-the-Job Training (OJT) which was designed to encourage companies to adopt a total approach to OJT through conducting long-term needs analysis of business needs and putting in place a plan for developing, implementing and evaluating OJT in the company. In the same year, the Association participated in the National Skills Recognition system (NSRS),
In view of the arrival of the internet era, our Association decided to set up its own website and members could be linked up globally for business opportunities so as to elevate the Association’s corporate image.
SJA embarked on several marketing and advertisement in the year 2002.
Together with Singapore Tourism Board (STB), a brochure was published – “Trust is Beauty” educating Chinese tourists on how to purchase jewellery from reliable sources.
From 19 January to 14 May 2002, our Association embarked on a series of TV commercials with Media Corp Channel 8 to promote the sale of gold jewellery hoping to stimulate the demand for gold jewellery, especially targeted at the younger generation.
From 24 May to 7 July 2002, our Association organised a Great Singapore Jewellery Sale to promote and encourage local consumers and tourists to purchase jewellery.
From 7 September to 3 October 2002, our Association and the World Gold Council (WGC) co-organised a wedding TV commercial – “Glow with Gold”.
In the same year, the Association embarked on the Industry Capability Upgrading Programme (ICAP), a national initiative spearheaded by SPRING Singapore which aims to enhance the performance levels and capabilities of the workforce.
To rejuvenate gold as a cool and chic “must wear” fashion accessories for young women in Singapore, World Gold Council launched the K-Gold Campaign with a few of the local jewellery brands from 1 July to 31 August 2003.
SJA signed a mediation MOU with CASE to seal its commitment to the Consumer Protection (Fair Trading) Act on 7 February 2004. Members are encouraged to utilize the mediation center provided by CASE
On 2 December 2004, Singapore Jewellers Association launched the “Mark of Trust” – Quality Jewellers of Singapore (QJS) Scheme which sets the benchmark for the jewellery industry to achieve and excel. Singapore Jewellery retailers who display the QJS decal had met with the stringent criteria to qualify for this recognition, so customers could shop with confidence.
Inaugural Singapore International Jewellery Show 2005 co-organised by Singapore International Jewellery Pte Ltd and Conference & Exhibition Management Services Pte Ltd from 20 – 23 October 2005. The show was supported by Singapore Jewellers Association.
In the year 2005, through the concerted efforts of the members of Singapore Jewellers Association and the Diamond Exchange of Singapore, an independent company “Singapore International Jewellery Pte Ltd” was set up to organise the 1st International Jewellery Show in Singapore. This successful collaboration has elevated the Singapore jewellery industry to greater heights.
In May 2008， the Association took over the management of “Rotary Jewelry Design Award” officially and renamed it as the “Singapore Jewellery Design Award”. The main objective of this award is to nurture talented jewellery design students by bridging the gap between an abstract design and a commercially marketable piece of jewellery; and a move for local jewellers to spot young talented designers so that they can be given a head start when they embark on their design career.
SJA signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Guangzhou Jewellery Chamber of Commerce on 7 June 2010 as goodwill gesture to strengthen the relationships between members of the two Associations.
In January 2011, SJA embarked on the LEAD programme to further elevate the standard of the jewellery industry. A master plan was developed to further elevate the standard of the jewellery industry.
In September 2012, to rejuvenate the jewellery industry, a youth sub-committee (YSC) was set up to attract younger industry players with the zeal and passion to contribute time and effort to the Association by injecting fresh ideas to help SJA keep abreast of new developments in the industry.
Going digital, SJA launched an online business matching portal enables its members to market their products via this platform. Similarly, SJA also introduced on-line jewellery design submission for its Singapore Jewellery Design Award to encourage more design students in the region to participate in the design competition.
On 22 January 2013, the Singapore Standard for the gold jewellery was launched. To set gold standards benchmarked against the best in the international arena, SJA worked with the Chemical Standard Committee (CSC) of SPRING Singapore, Singapore Chemical Industry Council (SCIC), TUV SUD PSB Pte Ltd, Singapore Assay Office (SAO), Inspectorate International Ltd, Agency for Science, Technology and Research , Chemical Metrology Division Health Sciences Authority, Singapore Polytechnic (SP), National University of Singapore (NUS), Singapore Chinese Chamber of Commerce & Industry (SCCCI) and Consumers Association of Singapore (CASE), in developing a Singapore Standard for the gold jewellery industry.
On 22 February 2013, aligned with the new vision, SJA unveiled its new corporate logo with a new Chinese name on 22 February 2013. The new identity symbolises a new beginning and a new journey ahead for the jewellery trade.
In October 2013, a new jewellery show– Singapore Jewellery & Gem Fair (SJGF), co-organised by SJA and UBM Asia Trade Fairs Pte Limited, was inaugurated . The objective is to attract buyers and sellers from the South East Asia region to use Singapore as a regional trading hub for jewellery.
In conjunction with the inaugural Singapore Jewellery & Gem Fair, SJA organised an ASEAN Jewellers’ Pledge signing and ASEAN Jewellery Trade Dialogue with the objective to facilitate and strengthen friendly cooperation amongst the members of the ASEAN jewellery industry. 9 ASEAN jewellery trade representatives from Brunei, Cambodia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam endorsed the pledge, witnessed by Mr Chan Chun Sing, Minister for Social and Family Development & Second Minister for Defence.
The ASEAN Jewellery Trade Dialogue enabled the ASEAN jewellery trade representatives to share knowledge and brainstorm the possibility to establish a common policy offering precious metal jewellery certified by internationally recognised accredited certification and testing bodies. This move is to elevate the quality of gold jewellery sold by ASEAN countries and work towards achieving the vision of ASEAN Economic Community in 2015.
Simultaneously, SJA’s Facebook and mobile app were launched in same month to engage young consumers and to create awareness of jewellery in Singapore.
In October 2014, SJA rolled out a 1-year Facebook campaign. Each month, a sponsored jewellery was given away to a lucky Facebook users who “Liked” or “Shared” SJA Facebook’s post.
On 27 February 2015, CaseTrust-SJA Accreditation Scheme was launched. The scheme aims to recognise business excellence, product quality and superior customer service so as to inject added confidence to local jewellery retail trade. SJA expects to have 150 outlets certified by end of 2015.