An investor from Dubai, Selim Fendi, is planning to open the first gold refinery in Monaco in early 2017. This will be a guarantee for both local and international jewelers that they are not using raw materials from armed conflict and war zones.
“Monaco Gold SAM will be producing up to 1 metric ton of gold per month in its first year of operation, with a further increase of capacity to 3 tons per month,” commented Fendi in one of his interviews.
The gold will be extracted from the mines of Colombia, Peru, Chile and Ecuador, and financed by the gold trading company “Noble Precious Metal DMCC” based in Dubai and owned by Fendi.
The leading luxury brands are already queuing up for it and are placing their future orders with the factory. European and US brands are their main customers. At the current price of gold, a monthly order costs an average of 40 million dollars.
“Certain jewelers will only be buying gold in Monaco in large quantities. They want a gold which is environmentally friendly and which respects human rights, mined in accordance with fair working conditions and without conflicts,” says Fendi. “Big luxury brands are short of 100% tested and fully approved gold. We will be able to track the production and refining processes from A to Z.”
Fendi is planning to open his refinery just when jewelry gold prices are declining and some factories are even closing. MTC-PAMP India Pvt., the largest gold recovery plant in India has temporarily suspended its work due to low demand and unprofitable operations.
According to the World Gold Council, the global demand for gold in the first quarter of this year has fallen sharply by 19 per cent compared to 2015 because of a drop in demand from India and China,
“Monaco is a great place to build a gold refinery – that’s where wealth is concentrated, and wealth is gold,” says Claude Kardoun, President of the Monaco Chamber of Watchmakers and Jewelers. “The demand for gold in Monaco may be higher than in many other places, due to a high concentration of wealthy populations. The more rich people there are out there, the higher is the demand for gold.”
It remains to be seen if the Fendi gold refinery in Monaco will succeed given the recent trends, taking into account its ability to target a niche market and various countries queuing for orders, the future could be sparkling.