China Kunming Pan Asian Stone Expo
The sheer size of this expo is amazing, particularly with viewed by Western standards. When the expo opened on July 10, 2012, over two thousand vendors had assembled in six huge buildings at the Kunming Convention Center. And by the time it closed on July 17th, over 200,000 visitors had participated in the event. This grand event is planned and staged by the Yunnan provincial government in cooperation with local authorities and several associations including the View Stone Association of Yunnan. The opening ceremony featured the Party Secretary for Yunnan and the Chair person of the View Stone Association of China.
The organizers consider this to be the largest stone exposition held in China and with participants and vendors from thirteen countries participating, they are likely correct. This is a commercial enterprise with two goals: first, promoting and selling stones and stone products originating in Yunnan province and, second, from other regions of southwestern China and adjacent countries. Strong educational and training components are part of this major event. Two days of lectures by recognized experts offer opportunities for enthusiasts to learn more about the stone industry. Young people are being trained during this expo to become judges and experts, particularly in the area of jade and jade-like stone. Kunming and Yunnan are the center for jade and jade trading in China.
Vendors from Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan were housed in Hall One, while Halls Two and Three were reserved for Chinese jewelry dealers. The more expensive viewing stones and jewelry were exhibited in a secure area within Hall Four. Hall Five was reserved for Yellow Dragon stone vendors, and Hall Six for other viewing stones. It takes approximately two days just to walk through the six buildings and view items on sale and on exhibit. Thus, a three or four day visit to this expo and the local stone market may be necessary.
The Kunming expo is the place to visit if you are interested in Yellow Wax stones and Golden Jade, a high quality version of the Yellow Wax stone. A beautiful array of high quality viewing stones native to Yunnan undoubtedly appeals to viewing stone collectors. The Jinsha and Long Rivers yield wonderful patterned stones as well as beautiful black stones. You can see more examples of Dali marble pattern stones that have been cut and mounted in frames than anywhere else in this country. More of the unique and variable iron stones can be seen here.
Kunming is the capital of Yunnan province so there are frequent flights to this major city. There are two nice hotels located adjacent to the convention center. Shipments within China are available at this expo; however, international shipments are not yet available. Be prepared to carry your purchases with you.