Good news for the opal industry – it would seem that demand for Australian Opal is on the rise, both locally and internationally.
There has been a noted increase in opal buyer visits to Lightning Ridge (NSW), and reports that both exploration and mining activity is gaining momentum in the Black Opal fields too.
This is great news in the lead up to the Australian Opal Exhibition, to be held on the Gold Coast in August. (The event sees opal suppliers and miners coming together to sell Opal and Opal Jewellery, as well as networking).
According to Australian Opal Exhibition president, Janice Evert, the increasing interest for opal has been indicated through the positive response from planned visitors, already received in relation to this year’s event.
“The world market is picking up for our national gemstone and we are seeing this reflected in early bookings for a variety of exhibition spaces,” she said.
What does this all equate to? Well it does seem that the increase in production of Ethiopian opal, which is hydrophane opal, did impact on Australian Opal sales. However, buyers have had their taste of the Ethiopian material and now realise the superiority of Australian Opal, and also justify its higher value.
Original source material and article By Stephanie Chan, posted on 27/04/14, and can be found at http://www.jewellermagazine.com/Article.aspx?id=4103&h=Opal-market-improves-locally-and-internationally