Antwerp, BELGIUM, African Diamond Conference, November 14, 2017 — At a speech given today at the African Diamond Conference by Stephane Fischler, the President of the Antwerp World Diamond Center (AWDC) and acting President of the World Diamond Council (WDC), Fischler reaffirmed both organizations’ commitment to the Kimberley Process as an important tool in protecting the legitimate supply chain from conflict diamonds. To ensure that a KP Certificate remains an assurance of conflict-free origin, he also urged every participant in the global diamond supply chain to show courage and determination with an honest and open dialogue about what has worked and what has not as part of the KP review cycle. Fischler states that given that immediate challenges remain, the industry’s resolve in protecting the integrity of the diamond pipeline is and remains stronger than ever.
“We must act together to closely evaluate the strengths and the shortcomings of the KP in order to ensure it remains an effective tool as new challenges emerge,” said Fischler. “All members and participants must consider themselves shareholders in this common project. That’s how the KP was created and how it will remain strong and effective in the future.”
Globally, the diamond industry supports the livelihoods of more than 10 million people worldwide. He added, “It is hard to understate the importance of the diamond trade to many economies and individuals around the world. But with great importance comes great responsibility. Governments and industry all have a duty to care and not to discount harm and risk by solely focusing on short term rewards. We must do so to meet the current and future challenges facing all involved in our industry and to create the right environment to secure new opportunities.”
The Kimberley Process Plenary meeting will take place in Brisbane, Australia on December 9-14, 2017 where the next review cycle of the Kimberley Process will occur. For more information, visit www.kimberleyprocess.com/en/plenary-2017.