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GEMS STONES IN PAKISTAN

INTRODUCTION:

Pakistan has large reserves of mineral ores and gemstones. Pakistani gemstones include a variety
of minerals such as peridot, aquamarine, topaz, ruby and emerald, making the country significant
in the mineral world.

In 1979, Gemstones Corporation of Pakistan was established to develop the gemstones sector in
Pakistan, however in 1997 the corporation liquidated. Now a number of organizations are
working in this sector including All Pakistan Commercial Exporters Association of Rough &
Unpolished Precious and Semi Precious Stones (APCEA) and Pakistan Gems and Jewellery
Development Company (PGJDC). Pakistan Gems and Mineral Show is held annually in
Peshawar since 1994, however it has not attracted much attention from potential international
buyers.

GEMS MARKET:
The southern port city of Karachi was once the biggest market of facet and rough cut gems in
Pakistan. However, after the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, the significance of Karachi was
reduced and Peshawar became the hub of gemstones trade. Due to the long and porous border
with Afghanistan, many gemstones from the country are now also found in Pakistan and since
1979, Peshawar is the only direct market for all gems found both in Pakistan and
Afghanistan. Pakistan Gems and Jewellery Development Company regularly hold Gem
Bazaars (exhibitions) in Quetta and Peshawar where gemstones attested by Gemstone
Identification Laboratory are traded. In Islamabad, so far three such exhibitions have been held.
In January 2012 exhibition, around two hundred companies from Pakistan displayed their
items. The third Islamabad Gem Exhibition was held in February 2013 where 80 national gem
traders displayed their products.

GEMS TESTING LABS:


The Government of Pakistan has established gem identification laboratories in major cities of
Pakistan to promote the gemstone trade in Pakistan. For this purpose, Pakistan Gems &
Jewellery Development Company is working in Lahore, Karachi, Peshawar, Quetta, and Gilgit
cities where the major share of gemstone trade exists. Since the inception of Pakistan Gems &
Jewellery Development Company, the gemstone trade in Pakistan has seen a major uplift.

There are also some private gem identification labs in Lahore, Karachi, and Peshawar which
have qualified gemologists working in their labs.
MINING AREAS:
Pakistan's western and northern areas are home to three mountain ranges; Hindukush, Himalaya,
and Karakorum which are home to all the minerals found in Pakistan. Some of the major mining
areas along with their main gemstone yields are mentioned below:

Khyber Pakhtunkhwa
The province of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa has three large mountain ranges: Hindukush covers the
area to north and north-west, Karakoram to the north and north-east, and Himalayas to the east.
According to Bureau of Statistics of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, 2568 tones of baryte and 85 tones of
corundum were produced in 2005-2006 and 1416 tonnes of quartz was produced in 2006-2007 in
the province. According to one source, Swat has reserves of 70 million carats of emerald,
Mardan has reserves of 9 million carats of pink topaz and Kohistan has 10 million carats worth
of reserves of peridot.

Region Image Gemstones Notes

Various types of quartz are found in the


Emerald, quartz, region. The image shows a specimen of
Swat
and epidote aquamarine and emerald on quartz
from Swat valley.

Corundum and The image shows pink and purple


Dir
quartz crystals of corundum.

Corundum
The image shows aquamarine on
Mansehra and smoky
smokey quartz.
quartz

The image shows a cluster of lime-


Kohistan Peridot green peridot crystals from Soppat in
Kohistan.
Region Image Gemstones Notes

Quartz from the region


Quartz, xenotim
Peshawar include Astrophyllite and Riebeckite fibe
e,
District rs. The image shows bastnaesite
and bastnaesite
crystal infused with rutile.

Tribal areas:

The Federally Administered Tribal Areas are strategically located between the Afghanistan and
Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province of Pakistan. The region is mostly dry and barren with hilly
northern Bajaur and Mohmand agencies.In the central agencies of Khyber, Kurram, and Orakzai,
the Safed Koh range is located while in the two southern agencies of Waziristan, the Sulaiman
range along with Waziristan hills are located. A large variety of minerals and gemstones are
found in these mountains: emerald and tourmaline are found in the north, and garnet and quartz
are found in the Bajaur and South Waziristan agencies. Department of Minerals is the
government department working for the exploration and development of the mining industry in
the region. According to their report, 29759 tons of quartz was produced in Mohmand agency in
2003-2004. However, the gemstone sector in the region is not developed and many resources
have not been properly identified and exploited.

Region Image Gemstones Notes

The image shows a


light olive green
Emerald, clinozoisite, sphene,
Mohmand Agency coloured sphene
and epidote
(titanite) with epidote
on calcite matrix.

The image shows


Emerald, garnet,
Bajaur Agency garnet and muscovite
and scapolite
on mica matrix.
Region Image Gemstones Notes

Quartz found in the


region include
astrophyllite and
reibeckite fibers. The
Quartz, xenotime, and
Khyber Agency image shows a
bastnaesite
bastnaesite crystal
with reddish hue from
Mulla Ghori in Khyber
agency.

Various types of
quartz include faden
quartz, diamond
quartz, phantom
quartz, quartz with
Waziristan Quartz chlorite, and window
quartz. The image
shows a muddy brown
coloured specimen of
window quartz from
South Waziristan.

Gilgit Baltistan

The three mountain ranges of Gilgit-Baltistan; Himalayas, Hindukush, and Karakoram contain
many minerals and gems including emerald, ruby, sapphire, aquamarine, moonstone, and
amethyst. A number of other minerals are also found in the region such as peridot, tourmaline,
topaz, garnet, red spinal, pargasite, diopside, sphene, apatite, azurite, rose quartz, and agate. In
Swat, pale green to green coloured emeralds can be found in talc-carbonate schist. In Hunza,
well formed pink to red crystals of ruby are found, while in Neelum valley high quality rubies
also occur.

Region Image Gemstones Notes


Region Image Gemstones Notes

The image shows a


Alluvial diopside, zircon,
pyramidal reddish-
Chilas rutile quartz, aquamarine,
orange zircon crystal
and tourmaline
from Chilas.

Aquamarine, topaz, Golden and white topaz


emerald, ruby, pollucite, are found in the region.
Gilgit and Shigar rutile quartz, morganite, The image shows rare
apatite, spinel, and pink apatite with albite
pargasite from Nagar Valley.

Aquamarine, topaz,
Image shows deep
Shengus, Stak Nala, tourmaline, apatite,
purple apatite from
and Tormiq Nala sphene, morganite, and
Shengus.
quartz

Apatite, zoisite, rutile The image shows


Shigar Proper quartz, epidote, and pastel-pink apatite with
morganite quartz from Shigar.

Aquamarine, emerald-
Childee, Kashmal, The image shows
coloured tourmaline,
and Yuno (Shigar aquamarine cluster
apatite, morganite, topaz,
valley) from the area.
and quartz
Region Image Gemstones Notes

Golden coloured Topaz


Topaz, aquamarine,
Testun, Dassu, Net of high quality is found
tourmaline, morganite,
Tahirabad, and here. Rare earth
apatite, quartz, and
Goyungo minerals are also
emerald
found.

Tourmaline, aquamarine,
Appu Aligund, Fuljo, garnets, diopside, ruby, Image shows
Braldu, Bashu, and pargasite, emerald, aquamarine with schorl
Karma topaz, amethyst, from Braldu valley.
scheelite, and quartz

Fine quality golden


rutile quartz is found
Khaplu, Ghanche Aquamarine, amethyst,
here. Image shows rare
District and quartz
specimen of quartz with
calcite and actinolite.

Balochistan:

Balochistan is the largest province of Pakistan by area and is covered by rough terrain and
rugged mountain ranges. Major mountain ranges of the province
include Makran, Sulaiman, Toba Kakar, and Kirthar.The main gemstones that are traded in the
region include emerald, apatite, sapphire, agate, tourmaline, ruby, topaz, turquoise, lapis lazuli,
quartz, garnet, and peridot.
Region Image Gemstones Notes

The image shows striated


anatase crystals (in black),
Brookite, anatase, and
Kharan District brookite blade and quartz
quartz
crystals covering a feldspar
matrix from Kharan.

Various types of quartz


found are diamond, window,
quartz on prehnite, and
Chaman Quartz faden. Image shows
translucent light sea-foam
green prehnite with quartz
crystals.

The image shows a large


Taftan Quartz and brookite specimen of quartz crystals
on brookite from Taftan.

Malachite, azurite, garnet,


The image shows fine
Chagai zircon, obsidian, lapis
quality brookite on quartz.
lazuli, and brookite

The image shows quartz


Panjgur Auriferous quartz
crystals with epidote.
Region Image Gemstones Notes

Kalat Brown garnet and fluorite

Qilla Abdullah Aragonite

Loralai Amethyst

QUALITY:
Quality tourmaline was found in the Kohistan magmatic arc Zone-6 at Haraosh near Gilgit, Stak
Nala between Gilgit and Skardu, Bulecli and Shingus in Gilgit division and Garm Chashma in
Chitral.

Tourmaline at Haraosh is discovered in pink, blue, and green varieties, whereas the Stak Nala is
now famous for bi-colour and tri-colour tourmaline.

Gem grade tourmaline also occurs at Buleclhi and Shingus, Gilgit, they said, adding that blue
tourmaline is found in pegmatite of Garm Chashma (Chitral). Green tourmaline is also found in
Azad Kashmir.

"Peridot of Indus Kohistan is one of the most beautiful gemstones of Pakistan and is sporadically
being mined at different localities. It has already captured market both locally and abroad," the
sources remarked.

Despite the presence of bodies concerned including Trade Development Authority of Pakistan
(TDAP), All Pakistan Commercial Exporter Association and Pakistan Mineral Development
Corporation, besides holding of regular gems and stones exhibitions at different level, no
significant development is taking place to tap the exploited potential in the gemstone sector.

There is a need to conduct surveys in the potential areas in collaboration with reputable institutes
to attract foreign investors in this sector, which can significantly contribute to the national kitty.

According to a report, mostly non-professional residents of mining areas are actually the ones
who mine these jewels in hazardous and traditional way. They usually form groups that initiate
diggings and blasting, damaging the quality and quantity of the jewels.
MANUFACTURE PROCESS:
In every woman's life there are moments when you want to look beautiful and brilliant and
nothing more that does not help than adequately sized jewelry. Jewelry manufacturers produce
the ornaments, which will certainly help many of women to show up their best during important
occasion and celebration. Preparation of art jewelry is a big challenge, even for the best
manufacturers of jewelry. The specificity of those products is primarily artistry which must be
characterized. Jewelery manufacturing process includes most advanced technologies and
dedicated research. Jewelry making is a very composite process undergoing a long and slow
procedure making it tought from the initial point to the concluding point. Each product
undergoes a series of procedures before we get the net product as a beautiful jewelry piece of art.

The natural components of jewelry (stones, silver and accessories) will undergo multiple
processes. These jewelries are unique and involve a lot of time and skill. Expect for personalized
jewelry which is handcrafted, most of the jewelries are excudet by casting machines.

Following is a brief description of all processes involve in the manufacturing chain.

Buying stones and silver

First of all we buy the right set of silver. We have only stering silver. Sterling silver is also called
.925 silver or .925 sterling silver. The .925 comes from the fact that sterling silver is an alloy
mixed with other metals. .925, or 92.5%, is the minimum proportion of pure silver that must be
included in the blend. The alloy is created to harden natural silver to make it durable and less
prone to tarnish. Sterling silver for our art projects, jewelry making and crafts comes in wire,
tubing, and sheets. Before silver is deposit in the bank first silver must be mined.

Every one of our suppliers will tell you that we provide top quality products and services. Silver
bar, or silver bullion, is an expensive investment that must be carefully considered before
purchase. Bars come in different sizes and weights and it's important that you know the weight
and purity of any bar before we purchase it. Mexico is currently the world's largest producer of
silver and is therefore the best place to buy. However, we are buying silver only in United States
of America.

Designing a jewelry
Each piece of jewelry starts off with a concept. A concept is basically a rough design in the mind
of the designer. The final design is the result of close cooperation between designer and
craftsman giving the art object a real hand crafted origin. The designer's concept and drawings
are used by the model maker to create the original piece of Jewelry.

Creating a jewelry design is a passionate yet difficult alchemy of embryonic ideas that knock
against each other and are transformed. For the unfortunate designer the blank page is in front of
him. Ah leave it alone don't darken the page mechanically; even pretend it can't be seen. Close
your eyes and gently send messages to the brain imploring Mother Nature for help. Fleeting
images appear shells, exotic leaves, wood texture etc.

Molding
Once the master piece of jewelry is complete, it is used to make a high technology mold, which
in turn is used to make wax reproductions of the Jewelry.

After the sketch is complete with all the fine details, it is passed on to the molding section. In the
molding department the very experienced professional molders then turn the sketch into a master
mold which sets the base for the total process there from. The master mold is a very complex
level of crafting as the final outcome rests on the master mold.

Casting (Lost-Wax Casting)


A metallic piece of jewelry will either be a unique piece, for example a unique custom made
engagement ring or the model to be used for a rubber mold. It may be produced by lost-wax
casting. This traditional method was already used by the ancient Egyptians.

The shape of the piece to be produced is initially shaped in wax or made of metal at a scale of
1.05 (or an average of 3%) to take into account solidification shrinkage (slight reduction of the
dimension of the metal piece produced compared with the wax model. This is linked to the
physical phenomenon of metals that are less dense as a liquid than as a solid, which results in a
volume decrease as the metal cools and solidifies.

Settings stones
Setting consists in attaching a precious stone or gem to a metal mount by moving part of the
metal. The techniques commonly used for settings include:
 Prong/claw Setting. The prongs are tiny pieces of metal from the mount that the setter
folds over the stone's girdle securing the stone into place. This is the most common
technique for solitary gems.
 Bezel setting. A tiny precious metal disk surrounds the stone. The sheet is folded over the
entire perimeter of the stone securing it from the underside.

Polishing

Every part must be polished while the mount is being made. The entire mount is carefully made
clean and polished to the highest degree of smoothness so that each and every part is attractively
polished off. After stage setting, the polisher is credit worthy for giving the jewelry a concluding
polish. All tinctures of the polishing compounds and 'rouge' must be meticulously got rid of
either by careful washing by hand, or by use of supersonic cleaning baths.

Mechanical polishing
Felt or cotton discs dipped in abrasive compounds are used to polish the surface of the metal. For
difficult places to reach, (crevices, inside angles) cotton threads/strings in the same abrasive
compounds are placed in the hard to reach areas and are vigorously rubbed.

Chemical polishing
This type of polishing is risky and is not appropriate for all alloys used in jewelry making.

Quality Checking
After the plating process is over, the product is brought to the checking department where each
and every piece is checked with excessive attention and thoroughly checked for any defects. This
process of quality checking is done by very experienced workers and all the defected pieces are
sending back to the respective departments.
GEMS CUTTING:

The process of cutting and polishing gems is called gemcutting or lapidary, while a person who
cuts and polishes gems is called a gemcutter or a lapidary (sometimes lapidarist).

Gemstone material that has not been extensively cut and polished is referred to generally
as rough. Rough material that has been lightly hammered to knock off brittle, fractured material
is said to have been cobbed.

All gems are cut and polished by progressive abrasion using finer and finer grits of harder
substances. Diamond, the hardest naturally occurring substance, has a Mohs hardness of 10 and
is used as an abrasive to cut and polish a wide variety of materials, including diamond itself.
Silicon carbide, a manmade compound of silicon and carbon with a Mohs hardness of 9.5, is also
widely used for cutting softer gemstones. Other compounds, such as cerium oxide, tin oxide,
chromium oxide, and aluminum oxide, are frequently used in polishing gemstones.

Lapidary Techniques
Several common techniques are used in lapidary work:
sawing
grinding
sanding
lapping
polishing
drilling
tumbling

Sawing
Sawing a piece smoky quartz. (Warning! Holding rough by hand during sawing can be
hazardous to the stone, the saw, and the cutter! Extreme caution is required.)

In most gem sawing, a thin circular blade usually composed of steel, copper, or a phosphor
bronze alloy impregnated along the outer edge with diamond grit and rotating at several
thousand surface feet per minute literally scratches its way through a gemstone. A liquid
such as oil or water is used to wash away cutting debris and keep the stone and the
sawblade from overheating, which could cause damage to both the stone and the saw blade.

Several sizes of circular rock saws are frequently used by most gem cutters:

 A slab saw, typically 16 to 24 inches in diameter, is used to cut stones of several inches
thickness into relatively thin slabs (often 1/8 to 3/8 inch thick).
 A trim saw, typically 6 to 10 inches in diameter, is used to cut smaller stones into thin
slabs or to cut small sections out of slabs.
 A faceter's trim saw, typically 4 inches in diameter, is used with a very thin blade, to
saw small pieces of expensive rough.

There are also jigsaws that employ either a reciprocating wire or a continuous thin metal band.
These are useful for cutting curved lines that are impossible with circular saws. They are also
useful in minimizing waste on extremely valuable rough material.

Grinding
Grinding, usually with silicon carbide wheels or diamond-
impregnated wheels, is used to shape gemstones to a desired rough
form, called a perform. As with sawing, a coolant/lubricant (water
or oil) is used to remove debris and prevent overheating. Very coarse
diamond or silicon carbide, such as 60 grit, or mesh, (400 micron
particles) or 100 grit (150 micron particles) is used for rapid removal
of stone, and finer abrasive (600 grit - 30 micron, or 1200 grit - 15 micron) is used for final
shaping and sanding.

Sanding
Sanding is similar to grinding but uses finer abrasives. Its purpose is to remove deep scratches
left by coarser abrasives during grinding. Since it removes material less rapidly, it also allows
more delicate control over final shaping of the stone prior to polishing. For stones with rounded
surfaces, a flexible surface such as a belt sander is often used to avoid creating flat areas and
promote smooth curves.

Lapping

Lapping is very similar to grinding and sanding, except that it is performed on one side of a
rotating or vibrating flat disk known as a lap, and it is used especially to create flat surfaces on a
stone (as in faceting). Laps are often made of cast iron, steel, or a copper-bronze alloy, but other
materials can also be used.

Polishing

After a gemstone is sawed and ground to the desired shape and sanded to remove rough marks
left by coarser grits, it is usually polished to a mirror-like finish to aid light reflection from the
surface of the stone (or refraction through the stone, in the case of transparent materials). Very
fine grades of diamond (50,000 to 100,000 mesh) can be used to polish a wide variety of
materials, but other polishing agents work well in many instances. Usually, these polishing
agents are metal oxides such as aluminum oxide (alumina), cerium oxide, tin oxide, chromium
oxide, ferric oxide (jeweler's rouge), or silicon dioxide (tripoli). Different stones are often very
inconsistent in their ease of polishing, particularly in the case of faceted stones, so gemcutters are
often very inventive in trying new combinations of polishing agents and polishing surfaces --
often tin, tin-lead, lead, leather, felt, pellon, wood, or lucite laps for flat surfaces such as facets.
Rounded surfaces, such as on cabochons, are often polished on felt, leather, cork, cloth, or wood.
Polishing removes small quantities of stone and can be used, especially when faceting small
stones, to do ultrafine shaping of the stone.

Drilling
When a gem cutter desires a hole in or through a gemstone (e.g., a bead), a small rotating rod or
tube with a diamond tip, or slurry of silicon carbide and coolant, is used to drill through the
stone. Ultrasonic, or vibrating, drills are also very effective, but they tend to be costly and thus
reserved for high-volume commercial drilling.

Tumbling

Large quantities of roughly shaped stones are often tumbled, i.e., turned at a slow speed in a
rotating barrel with abrasives and water for extended periods (days or weeks). By tumbling with
progressively finer grades of abrasive (usually silicon carbide) and washing carefully between
grades, the stones are gradually smoothed and polished to serendipitous but often very attractive
shapes. Tumbling barrels are often hexagonal in outline in order to enhance the stirring action of
barrel rotation. An alternative to rotator tumblers is a vibratory machine, often called a vibratory
tumbler, in which the containing barrel vibrates rather than rotates. The more stationary
arrangement of vibratory machines makes it much easier to examine the progress of the stones
inside, whereas standard tumblers must be halted in order to check progress. In addition to
polishing gemstones, tumbling is often used to polish large quantities of metal jewelry.

SALES OF GEMSSTONES:

Selling gemstones, particularly colored gems at a desirable price is a difficult task for
independent, small-scale miners or dealers, working in remote locations in faraway places such
as Nigeria, Sri Lanka, Madagascar, Tanzania, Kenya, Pakistan, Burma, Afghanistan, Columbia,
Bolivia,Mexico,Yemen,India,Turkey.

Indecent miners and dealers typically want to turn their hard work into cash as soon as possible.
Usually this means taking the rough stone to a local market in the nearest town, or selling the
rough to middlemen who go between the miners or local dealers and the foreign buyers, and
there may be several levels of middlemen, who each take a share. Many miners realize that
selling to local middlemen is not a good economic strategy end.