Diamonds Make a Difference
The industry employs about Ten million people worldwide, directly or indirectly. As on its major resources, diamonds are helping transform Africa and the lives of its people. Diamonds revenues are making a difference in Africa by providing jobs, building hospitals and roads, and funding education.
We at The Jewelry Hut can assure you that we do not sell or promote conflicts diamonds. The Jewelry Hut exclusive diamonds and diamond jewelry suppliers have assured us that the diamonds are from areas that are conflict free. The diamond industry has established the Kimberly Process to prevent the trade of conflict diamonds. Today, 99 percent of the world’s diamond supplies are certified to be from sources that are free from conflict.
A Diamond Guide
Understanding the processes that ban Conflict Diamonds
History of Conflict Diamonds
In the late 1990s, the world became aware that certain rebel movements in Africa were selling, among other things, diamonds illegally traded to fund conflict against legitimate and internationally recognized governments.
As awareness of these conflict diamonds grew, aided in part, by the efforts of non-governmental organizations, NGOs, such as Global Witness, the industry became increasingly concerned about the gave human suffering being caused by several rebel organizations.
Even though conflict diamonds represented a very small proportion of the world’s trade, about 4 percent, the diamond industry recognized the clear moral imperative to act decisively on the issue and galvanized its members to present a united front in the campaign to stop the trade in conflict diamonds. Because of these efforts and as announced by Kimberly Process authorities in year 2004, well over 99% of the world’s diamond supplies is certified to be from sources that are free from conflict.
Rough Diamonds Export
Under Kimberly Process, each shipment of rough diamonds being exported and crossing an international border is required to be transported in a tamper resistant container. This is accompanied by a government validated Kimberly Process Certificate assuring the diamonds are certified to be from sources free of conflict. Each certificate must be resistant to forgery, uniquely numbered and include data describing the shipment’s content. The shipment can only be exported to a co-participant country in the Kimberly Process. No uncertified shipments of rough diamond will be permitted to enter participant’s country.
The Kimberly Process requires participant countries to institute internal controls so that when diamonds move to the point of first export, they are protected.
The Kimberly Process
In the year 2000, a joint initiative was begun by governments, the international diamond industry and NGOs to ensure diamonds were not used to fund rebel activities.
The initiative became known as the Kimberly Process and was immediately supported by the United nations General Assembly. This was the first time a global industry of any kind had cooperated with the UN, governments and NGOS to address an important humanitarian issue.
On November 5, 2002, fifty two governments ratified and adopted the Kimberly Process, an initiative intended to rid the world of diamonds illegally traded to fund conflict. Today, 68 governments, in partnership with NGOs and the diamond industry, are committed and legally bound to the UN mandated process.
The System of Warranties
The diamond industry also adopted a System of Warranties to assure consumers of the origin of their diamonds. Under this system, which has been endorsed by all Kimberly Process participants, every buyer and seller of polished diamonds and jewelry containing diamonds must make the following assurance statement on all invoices:
“The diamonds herein invoiced have been purchased from a legitimate sources not not involved in funding conflict and in compliance with United Nations resolutions. The seller hereby guarantees that these diamonds are conflict free, based on personal knowledge and/or written guarantees provided by the supplier of these diamonds.”
Re-Exportation of Rough Diamonds
Any rough diamonds being re-exported will also require a Kimberly Process Certificate, which will be issued by the exporting country. These re-exports can be comprised of any combination of rough diamonds that have been previously imported and certified through the Kimberly Process.
In addition, each company trading in rough and polished diamonds is obliged to keep records of all warranty invoices issued and received when buying or selling a diamond. These warranties must be audited and reconciled on an annual basis by the company’s own auditor. If asked for by a duly authorized government agency, these records must be made available to establish that a company buying or selling diamonds is in compliance with the Kimberly Process and the System of Warranties. Under this system, it would be considered a violation to issue a warranty assurance statement on any sales invoices unless it can be corroborated by warranty invoices for purchases. You have the responsibility to require written assurances from all diamond and diamond jewelry suppliers that these vendors subscribe to the System of Warranties and you should ensure that the System of Warranties Assurance Statement described earlier appears on every invoice received from your vendors.
The Clean Diamond Trade Act
Each country participating in the Kimberly Process must have a corresponding law in place, which enforces the need for Kimberly Process certifications upon export and import into that country. The Clean Diamond Trade Act is the United States’ corresponding law that was passed in year 2003. This Act requires annual reviews of standards, practices and procedures of any entity in the United States that issues Kimberly Process certificates for the import and export of rough diamonds.
The USA Patriot Act
Further ensuring the legitimacy of the diamond supply is a provision in the Patriot Act where dealers in precious gemstones or jewels are required to have anti-money laundering programs to detect attempts to launder money and finance terrorism through businesses.
Critical to the success of these programs is your knowledge of the identity of your business partners and your ability to monitor your transactions in order to establish their legitimacy. Compliance with Kimberly Process and System of Warranties go hand in hand with setting up such programs to comply with the Patriot Act.
With these processes in place you can tell your customers that your diamonds come from legitimate sources and furthermore, are free from links with terrorist organizations.
The Diamond Development Initiative (DDI)
The Diamond Development Initiative (DDI) was organized to build on the important work of the Kimberly Process. While the Kimberly Process addresses the trade of rough diamonds, the DDI seeks to address the production of rough diamonds in some poorest countries in Africa. These countries have a prevalence in artisan mines.
Unlike the more traditional closed and regulated mines found in South Africa, Botswana and Namibia, artisan mines are found on river beds where diamonds have been washed up from great depths, close to the surface where they can be mined using hands or simple tools. By their very nature, these areas are vulnerable to exploitation.
The focus of the DDI will be the creation of a multilateral partnership that will allow interested parties to pool their resources, experience and knowledge, and to integrate various initiatives that are being developed in this field. These parties include but are not limited to, governments, NGOs, donors, and industry and development organizations.
This partnership could achieve real change. By bringing artisan alluvial diamond mining into the formal sector, there could be the establishment of free and open markets for these diamonds. These steps are intended to create major benefits for artisan mining communities and governments alike, and the diamond industry at large.
Diamonds Economic Development
The International diamond industry employs some 10 million people directly and indirectly, many in third world and developing countries. Diamonds, like other natural resources, are vital to the economic development of countries in Africa and elsewhere in the world.
The vast majority of the world’s diamonds come from that aid development and provide sustainable employment. When government assure good governance and appropriate laws, diamonds are a vital source of revenue for the building of infrastructure and essential social services.
The measures agreed on by the industry within the Kimberly Process are designed to protect all countries with diamond interests, whether they be producing, processing or consuming nations. Well over 99 percent of the world’s diamond supply is certified to be from sources that are free from conflict.
To view more information on the diamond industry, and find helpful tools to better explain the Kimberly Process and System of Warranties to your sales staff and customers, please visit: www.diamondfacts.org.
Or, for more information about the Kimberly process, please visit: www.kimberlyprocess.com