The Kimberley Process (its full title is the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme) is an international organisation and is a joint initiative between Governments, the International Diamond Industry and civil society organisations which monitors the diamond trade and aims to prevent the flow of conflict diamonds while helping to protect the legitimate trade in rough diamonds. Under the Kimberley process governments that have signed up to its requirements have to establish legislation and internal monitoring bodies to regulate diamond mining and the importation and exporting of diamonds within their borders.
Development of the Kimberley process began when South African diamond producing states met in Kimberley South Africa in May of 2000 to discuss ways to stop the trade in conflict diamonds. By December of that year the United Nations General Assembly had adopted a resolution supporting the creation of an international scheme for the trade of rough diamonds. By November of 2002 discussions between Governments, the International Diamond Industry and civil society organisations resulted in the creation of the Kimberley Process.
The Kimberley Process imposes extensive requirements on member countries in order to be able to certify shipments of rough diamonds as conflict free which prevents conflict diamonds from entering the legitimate trade. Every diamond shipment from a KPCS member country must be sent in a tamper proof container and have an official Kimberley process certificate which must be; resistant to forgery, uniquely numbered and describe the contents of the shipment. A member country cannot accept a diamond shipment without the above two criteria being filled. Member countries can also not import from or export to non-member countries.
KPCS member governments are required to set up a central service whose function is to monitor all diamond related activity in their country which is typically referred to as the “Diamond Office”. All diamond imports and exports from and to the country are required to pass through this office where the Government can track statistical data on all shipments including source and destination. This statistical data tracking is crucial to the operation of the Kimberley process as it allows KPCS officials to detect anomalies by analysing imports and exports for a country.
The Kimberley Process is open to all countries that are willing and able to implement its stringent requirements. Currently there are 54 participants representing 81 countries (the EU is counted as one country) and all major rough diamond producing, importing & exporting countries are included. The Process also includes the World Diamond Council which represents the international diamond industry and civil society organisations such as Partnership Africa-Canada.
Parnelle Diamonds always ensures that we deal only with exporters in countries that have signed up to the Kimberley Process.