2015 Kimberley Process Plenary Meeting

Press Release (ePRNews.com) - Nov 17, 2015 - Occasion/Event: Kimberley Process (KP) Plenary Meeting Opening Seminar and Workshop
Date: November 16th, 2015
Location: Hotel de Convenções de Talatona
Panel:  18 Mining Ministers within each diamond-producing country in Africa
Attendees:  Intergovernmental representatives and credentialed Administrative KP Members
Keynote Speaker: Dr. M’Zée Fula-Ngenge
Position: Chairman
Organization: African Diamond Council (ADC)
Subject & Talking Points: 2015 ADC Progress Report for KP Plenary meeting

Notable quotes, main points & excerpts from Dr Ngenge’s opening speech at the Kimberley Process Plenary Meeting in Luanda, Angola on Monday, Nov. 16, 2015:

“The KP Diamond Certification Scheme was created in 2003 to thwart and ban trading in blood or conflict diamonds, not to identify the challenge of blood/conflict diamonds without ever addressing it or providing an efficacious solution.”

“Global diamond companies have continued to prop up the Kimberley Process Diamond Certification Scheme (KP) because the initiative has now developed into the perfect and most effective mechanism for those companies to camouflage how they operate.”

“The KP initiative encourages global diamond companies to indiscriminately exploit the front end of the African diamond industry without much consequence.”

“Without serious consideration being given to reformation of the blood/conflict diamond definition, it gives the KP a green light to be run as a conveniently sadistic and unitary assembly of irresponsible jewelers who know little or nothing about how African diamonds are actually sourced and transported.”

“Over the past decade, the U.S. State Department has deceitfully shielded human rights abusers by assertively attempting to utilize KP to lure in unresponsive non-diamond producing countries specifically designed to keep the inefficacious scheme alive.”

“These non-producing countries have shown more interest in employing the KP to clear negligible gemstone hurdles that exist between their countries, rather than utilizing it to authoritatively prevent political upheaval in African countries, such as the Central African Republic, as the best existing example.”

“In this last quarter of 2015, we can clearly see that the craving for diamond jewelry in the United States and China continues to diminish.”

“At the same time, global consumers have become fully aware that KP certification does not and has never guaranteed that African diamonds are unassociated with human rights violations.”

“Globally, the diamond industry has witnessed a significant drop in diamond exploration, which puts diamond-producing countries like Botswana and Canada at risk of failing to develop long-term prospects.”

“Here in Africa, gluttonous venture capitalist continue to show a spirited desires to purchase rough diamonds in large quantities, however, many global financiers fail to invest in developing African diamond affairs on a long-term scale.”

“The ADC has constructively called for improvements to the structure of the conflict diamond mechanism and we have even suggested a more comprehensive definition of ‘conflict/blood diamonds’ to ensure that previously overlooked human rights violations can be addressed and to ensure that the KP is in position to regain some sense of relevance.”

“At present, the front end of the African diamond industry continues to suffer from and is plagued with a variety of setbacks and undermining tactics, such as illegal import & export, tax-evasion issues, money laundering, financing of terrorist activities, exploitative working conditions, cover-ups from privately-held diamond consortiums possessing huge marketing budgets as well as some of the worst forms of child labor and torture the African Diamond Council has ever witnessed.”

“The African diamond trade is often used to launder illegal funds worth millions of dollars and the KP has successfully ushered in more terrorist activities as well as more sophisticated diamond smuggling operations.”

“There are scores of ever-changing diamond smuggling channels between African diamond-producing countries and worldwide diamond centers, which are not equipped with any infallible mechanism that prevents diamond smuggling.”

“Over the last 18 months, the ADC has witnessed an increasing number of African children that now make up a significant number of those being forced in illegal diamond mining operations, which the KP does nothing to prevent from repeatedly occurring.”

“The World Diamond Council (WDC), together with back-end diamond jewelers not only remain at the forefront of leading the KP survival campaign, but are forever on the defensive to keep the certification scheme alive.”

“The KP’s most significant accomplishment in the last decade has been effectively misleading consumers, while coaxing non-diamond producing countries into an environment that favors the diamond’s last stop, which is the jeweler’s window.”

“The WDC & KP members continue to make unavailing attempts to convince the world that the KP initiative is the sole reason that Africa’s diamond industry is fraudulently promoted as well-regulated, honorable and impregnable.”

“Another indicator that the KP is becoming more unethical and underhanded in their decision-making became more evident when Australia, a major diamond-producing country, officially withdrew their bid to serve as KP Chair in 2016 immediately following the KP Intercessional Meeting Angola hosted in June 2015.”

“The United Arab Emirates, a non-producing diamond country will attempt to lead the KP in 2016 and their local diamond officials will struggle considerably to make an auspicious impact on Africa’s diamond industry.”

“As NGO’s join forces to boycott the decision to have the UAE serve as Chair of the KP, the ambitious objectives of the incoming KP Chair will also be closely monitored by the ADC, particularly since we know that the UAE will now become a sanctuary for transactions between Africa’s most innovative diamond smugglers and those who oversee India’s massive diamond exchange warehouses.”

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CATEGORIES : Government
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