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Ronnie VanderLinden

IDMA President

“It’s been a bit of a muddle”

IDEX’s Editor, Joh Jeffay, this past Friday began his weekly Memo with a question: “Baffled by the G7 sanctions on Russian diamonds?” he asked.

“You’re not alone. Frankly, it’s been a bit of a muddle, and you’d be forgiven for losing track. The simple version is that the G7 nations – US, UK, Canada, Japan, France, Germany, Italy, plus the 27 EU countries – agreed last December to outlaw most Russian diamonds. Together, they repof collating information on how different countries are tackling the current 1.0-cts ban. Unfortunately, the phrase ‘more information to be released’ crops up again and again.”resent 70 percent of all retail diamond sales.”

Jeffay continued and praised the Responsible Jewellery Council (RJC) for “a fine job of collating information on how different countries are tackling the current 1.0-cts ban. Unfortunately, the phrase ‘more information to be released’ crops up again and again.”

Here in the United States, we’re fortunate that the federal government has consulted with the American diamond and jewelry industry and trade, has been highly responsive, and consequently has come up with a practical and workable method and system to address and report on the origin of imported diamonds, both rough and polished.

Still, uncertainty is the rule for our colleagues in the G7 countries and colleagues who do business with partners in G7 countries.

Of course, there is nothing new under the sun: for decades, uncertainty has been the only constant in our businesses. Many of our colleagues in IDMA, myself included, still fondly remember the outcry of our German colleague, diamond manufacturer Karl-Heinz Meng, who at an IDMA meeting more than two decades ago, when the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme (KPCS) was about to be implemented, shouted out: “And what am I supposed to do with my old stock [of rough]?

Unfortunately, I expect we will hear many similar outcries from colleagues worldwide as governments and authorities will be reviewing their confusing legislative and decision-making processes. We can only hope they will have the wisdom to continue to consult with their countries’ diamond and jewelry trade leadership and seek their input.

Hope springs eternal!

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