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ICA participates in meeting to discuss responsible supply chains for precious stones
The meeting was held with a multi-stakeholder group of around 50 representatives
By: Diamond World News Service
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May 4 2013 4:59PM
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Reference: 7796  

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A discussion on responsible supply chains for precious stones took place amongst a multi-stakeholder group of some fifty representatives from industry, civil society and government, at the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) in Paris, on April 30, 2013. Fafo Institute for Applied International Studies, Jewelers of America, Signet Jewelers Ltd., the U.K. Foreign and Commonwealth Office and the U.S. Department of State, were hosts of this meeting. The International Colored Gemstone Association (ICA) represented the colored gemstone industry at the meeting. ICA Vice President Jean Claude Michelou briefly presented the UNICRI (United Nation Research Institute on Crime and Justice) project in developing a mechanism to certify and track colored gemstone from countries of origins.

Talks were in the form of open discussions with participants addressing issues related to the evolving risks that the trade in precious stones may be associated with conflict and human rights abuses. The issues of importance of responsible sourcing practice, international guidelines and business conduct were stressed upon and a need to provide frameworks to support responsible business conduct, including in the precious stones sector was highlighted.

Participants also confirmed that efforts to advance responsible sourcing for precious stones should complement and not undermine or replace existing initiatives, such as the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme and the recent UN initiative for the colored gemstones that also addresses illicit and criminal practices, as well as environmental, social and governance issues. Further discussions on examining the due diligence processes to support the responsible sourcing of precious stones, including the artisanal and small-scale mining sectors, were kept open to all interested parties.

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