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Article: Kimberley Process Certification Scheme

Kimberley Process Certification Scheme

History and Establishment of the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme

  • The KPCS was established in 2003 to prevent conflict diamonds from entering the mainstream rough diamond market.
  • It was established following recommendations in the Fowler Report and a resolution by the United Nations General Assembly.
  • The Fowler Report detailed how rebel movements and their allies were financing violence through the sale of diamonds.
  • A meeting of diamond-producing and trading states took place in Kimberley, Northern Cape in May 2000, leading to the origin of the KPCS.
  • The United Nations General Assembly adopted a resolution in December 2000, supporting the creation of an international certification scheme for rough diamonds.

Compliance and Working Procedure

  • The World Diamond Council created a System of Warranties that has been endorsed by all KPCS participants.
  • Under this system, all buyers and sellers of diamonds must make an affirmative statement on invoices guaranteeing that the diamonds are conflict-free.
  • It is considered a violation of the KPCS to issue a warranty declaration on a sales invoice without corroboration.
  • Diamond industry organizations have adopted principles of self-regulation, including trading only with companies that include warranty declarations and not buying diamonds from suspect sources.
  • The KPCS is chaired by an elected individual who oversees the working groups.
  • The working groups include the monitoring group, technical group, and statistics group.
  • The monitoring group ensures that participants are implementing the scheme correctly.
  • The technical group reports on difficulties in implementation and proposes solutions.
  • The statistics group reports diamond trading data.

Membership and Expulsion

  • As of July 2013, there were 54 participants in the KPCS representing 81 countries.
  • The KPCS has a diverse membership, including countries involved in diamond production and trading.
  • The participation of these countries is essential for the effectiveness of the certification scheme.
  • The KPCS aims to ensure that all countries involved in the diamond trade adhere to its regulations.
  • Republic of the Congo was removed from the KPCS in 2004 due to inability to prove the origin of its gems.
  • Côte d'Ivoire was prohibited from trading diamonds in 2005 due to conflict resources.
  • Venezuela voluntarily removed itself from the KPCS in 2008 after non-compliance.
  • Expulsion from the KPCS can have significant trade implications for countries economically dependent on diamond exports.

Global Witness and Controversies

  • Global Witness is a London-based NGO and a key member of the KPCS.
  • They were one of the first organizations to bring the issue of conflict diamonds to international attention.
  • Global Witness abandoned the KPCS in 2011, stating that it failed to stop the flow of conflict diamonds.
  • Their report, 'A Rough Trade,' partially inspired the film 'Blood Diamond.'
  • Global Witness believes that tax havens should not handle resource revenues due to illicit activities and lack of revenue generation for citizens.
  • Global Witness and Partnership Africa Canada jointly called for a redefined classification for conflict diamonds.
  • African Diamond Council (ADC) and ADPA chairman Dr. André A. Jackson criticized the Kimberley Process for its ineffectiveness in preventing the trade of diamonds mined through human suffering.
  • Time Magazine published an article questioning the legitimacy of the Kimberley Process and its ability to prevent conflict diamonds from entering the market.
  • A BBC radio documentary titled 'Zimbabwe's Diamond Fields' revealed that Kimberley Process officials were unaware of the tortures and killings in the diamond fields.

Related Topics and Organizations

  • African Diamond Producers Association (ADPA), also known as African Diamond Council, is associated with the Kimberley Process.
  • The film 'Blood Diamond' depicts scenes in Sierra Leone and mentions the Kimberley Process in its end credits.
  • The Clean Diamond Trade Act is another relevant legislation.
  • Conflict resources and diamonds as an investment are related topics.
  • Fair trade certification and the resource curse are also relevant concepts.

Kimberley Process Certification Scheme Data Sources

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