‘Gold and jewellery sale in apartments, offices is illegal’

Dubai Central Laboratory warns residents against buying ornaments from unlicensed sellers

Gulf News

Dubai: Selling gold and precious jewellery in apartments and offices is illegal, Dubai Municipality has warned.

Dubai Central Laboratory (DCL). which is under the civic body, has also warned the public against dealing with people who trade in gold and jewellery inside apartments and offices, as these are unlicensed practices and not subjected to any monitoring.

Ameen Ahmad, head of Gold and Precious Stones Committee at DCL, called on the public not to be swayed by these illegal traders.

Dubai Municipality plays a big role in spreading awareness in this area through organising and participating in exhibitions, seminars, and also promoting through the media a culture of safe buying of precious metals, the civic body said in a press release on Tuesday.

The DCL is a responsible and authorised body in the areas of testing, inspection and certification according to global specifications such as ISO17025, ISO17020 and ISO17065. It is a reference agency that is relied on by other government organisations concerned such as the Economic Development Department and the police to protect consumers’ rights.

Ahmad said DCL has carried out nearly 1,001 inspection tours at 706 gold and jewellery shops this year until the end of August.

He pointed out that variance in gold carat tops the list of offences that are monitored by the laboratory, followed by non-conformity of the test result with the card data.

“In this case, the inspector issues a warning against the dealer, and when the offence is repeated the matter shall be referred to the competent legal authorities to take the appropriate action, depending on the type of infringement,” said Ahmad.

He denied the existence of any major fraud or manipulation by gold and jewellery traders in Dubai, stressing that the traders always want to maintain their reputation, because most of them have inherited the profession from their parents and grandparents, and thus do not want to spoil the family name for the sale of a few fake pieces for whatever profit.

“Also, the facilities provided by the relevant government departments help traders comply with the rules and regulations issued at the UAE level in general and Dubai in particular. Since Dubai is the City of Gold, the keenness of traders is derived from the government’s keenness, and Dubai is one of the best markets that offers high-quality products to the consumers,” Ahmad pointed out.

Ahmad said that gold and jewellery stores in Dubai are subjected to different rounds of inspections in accordance with a scheduled programme by a team of specialised inspectors. They carry out at least two supervisory visits at each store a year, in addition to random and unscheduled inspections.

“The number of precious stone pieces inspected during the tours this year until August 23 was 8,865, of which 1,265 samples were sent to the DCL for examination. The inspector chooses samples of precious metals such as gold, silver and platinum from each store randomly as per the carat and country of manufacture and sends them for testing in the DCL to ensure compliance with the specifications. This also applies to gems, which are subject to checks to make sure of the colour, purity, cut and weight, which are the factors that determine their value, and that information is compared with the tariff card of the stone as well,” he said.