The G7 countries released a statement on December 6 which sets forth import restrictions on Russian diamonds from January 1, 2024 and further restrictions as of March 1, 2024, as well as calling for a traceability-based verification and certification mechanism for rough diamonds in a single-entry point in the G7 by September 1, 2024.
I would like to stress that the WFDB is committed to finding a solution that will ease the effects of these sanctions on the members of our bourses and other industry players. It is unthinkable that a system to facilitate access of responsibly sourced diamonds will create a monopoly that will impede their entry into the market. We will endeavor, with the G7 and all industry organizations including the WDC, the GJEPC and others, to find a fair and workable solution.
Following is our official response to the G7 statement:
“The World Federation of Diamond Bourses (WFDB), which represents 27 diamond bourses and close to 30,000 bourse members worldwide, reiterates its support for the objectives of the G7 to restrict the import of rough and polished diamonds originating in Russia.
The WFDB will continue to cooperate with the G7 and the World Diamond Council (WDC) in their efforts to establish a practical and effective mechanism to fulfill these objectives.
The WFDB seeks to ensure that the mechanism to be adopted by the G7 will facilitate access of responsibly sourced diamonds to G7 markets and will limit impediments and unnecessary additional costs to diamond trading.
The G7 countries are considering imposing a single-entry point within the G7 for the registration and inspection of rough diamonds to ensure that they are not of Russian origin and that only these diamonds will be able, after being polished, to be sold in G7 markets as polished diamonds. This will oblige companies from around the world who wish to market polished diamonds within the G7 to open an office in this single point of entry. Moreover, having only one point for registration and inspection will impose additional costs of time and money to the diamond trade.
The proposed mechanism as we understand it will be detrimental to the worldwide diamond industry throughout the entire pipeline – from producing countries through to the consumer. It is possible to create a more efficient and effective mechanism by allowing additional major diamond centers that deal with rough diamonds (for example Mumbai, Israel and Dubai), as well as the producing countries in Africa and elsewhere, to conduct the inspection and registration themselves, thus streamlining the process and saving considerable costs. We call upon the G7 countries to engage with the industry organizations in order to reach a more equitable and balanced mechanism.”
Stay well and happy holidays.