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How the Kimberley Process was Established

Often, we find what is the kimberley process. The Kimberley process (KP) was established in May 2000 when diamond-producing states met in Kimberley, South Africa, to discuss ways to stop the trade in ‘conflict’ diamonds.

The process aims to end the sale of diamonds that finance violence by rebel movements seeking to undermine legitimate governments. However, it fails to address broader issues of human rights and worker exploitation.

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What is the kimberley process?

The kimberley process is an international scheme that unites administrations, civil societies and diamond industry members in halting trade in so-called blood or conflict diamonds – rough diamonds sold to finance wars. It has 49 participants (48 individual states plus the 27-member European Union) and aims to ensure that the diamonds are not used to fund rebel movements, terrorism or other human rights abuses.

The problem with the kimberley process is that it’s too narrowly focused on preventing mining and distribution of conflict diamonds, which leaves broader issues such as worker exploitation and child labor unaddressed. In addition, it also fails to address the impact of diamond mining on the environment and carbon emissions, which are harmful for global climate change.

While the kimberley process is still widely regarded as a legitimate way to buy ethically, it is not without its flaws. As such, we recommend buying lab-grown diamonds to protect the people who make your jewellery.

What is the kimberley process’s purpose?

The kimberley process is an international forum that unites administrations, civil societies and industry in reducing the flow of conflict diamonds around the world. Its Core Document defines conflict diamonds as ‘rough diamonds used by rebel movements or their allies to finance conflict aimed at undermining legitimate governments’.

Its aim is to prevent blood diamond trade, which has affected people in Angola, Sierra Leone and the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). According to Amnesty International, 3.7 million people have been killed in conflicts funded by the trade.

The kimberley process has been a success in slowing down the blood diamond trade, but there are still many problems. One of the biggest is that it does not address child labour or environmental issues.

What is the kimberley process’s definition of conflict diamonds?

The kimberley process is a multilateral trade regime that attempts to stop the trade in so-called blood diamonds (rough diamonds sold by rebel groups to finance wars) and protect the legitimate diamond industry. It is a global certification scheme that has 49 participants (48 individual states plus the 27-member European Union) and has been in effect since 2003.

The process works by requiring governments to prove that their diamond exports are conflict-free and carries a kimberley process certificate with each shipment. Violations can result in sanctions from the United Nations and other Kimberley countries.

This multilateral approach has brought attention to the issue of conflict diamonds, but it’s still far from enough. The kimberley process has done more good than bad, but it needs to be reformed and more relevant to today’s challenges.

To be truly effective, the definition of conflict diamonds must be broadened to include issues like unsafe working conditions and child labour. A system to invoke this definition must be based on consensus and implemented in a clear, consistent and fair way.

What is the kimberley process’s impact on the diamond industry? 

The kimberley process was established by a United Nations resolution in 2003 to stop the sale of so-called conflict diamonds that fuel conflict. It is a global certification system that requires international shipments of rough diamonds to be accompanied by a kp certificate.

Today, a coalition of concerned civil society organizations has called on the industry to clean-up its act and no longer approach respect for human rights and responsible business as an optional exercise. This follows a recent investigation that found companies in 13 leading jewellery and watch brands still violate human rights in their diamond supply chains.

The kimberley process has been the only global certification scheme that has ever tracked the origins of all diamonds traded worldwide, from mine to jeweler. However, it is now clear that the kimberley process’s success depends on countries adopting legislation to ensure it is effective and its participants commit to implement the required measures.

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