Two so-called Intersessional Meetings of the Kimberley Process (KP) participants, which will take place in Mumbai, India, starting from June 17, will focus on an interdependent value chain, where risk is not equally distributed, said Stephane Fishler, World Diamond Council President.
The two consecutive Intersessional Meeting, which like the Plenary Meeting scheduled to take place in Delhi in November, is being hosted by the government of India.
Both will focus largely on the KP review and reform process, currently in its third and final year.
«It is that [diamond value] chain that I would like to focus upon. There are few business sectors with the same degree of interdependence as exists among the various players along its length. Each cannot operate without the other, meaning that every member has the ability to both facilitate and disrupt the entire system.
«But the stakes are not equally high along the value chain. While in many of the mining regions and in a number of the processing centers diamonds are a primary source of income and community development, in the countries where polished diamond jewelry is predominantly sold, they are considered non-essential products, in a luxury marketplace where there are numerous alternatives. True, diamonds have retained their popularity over a remarkably long period of time. But, should the consumers’ confidence in the gem be shaken, they may well select to spend their disposable income on electronics, holiday travel or some other luxury item,» Stephane Fishler said.
He added that it s essential to show the benefits that diamonds could bring to communities, especially in countries where artisanal and small-scale mining are dominant.
«It is for this reason that the new WDC System of Warranties expressly references human and labor rights, anti-money laundering and anti-corruption, and why we advocate together with civil society that, as part of the KP reform process, the “conflict diamonds” definition be expanded to include all forms of systemic violence. We hope to report significant progress from Mumbai», he noted.