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World Diamond Council launches new guidelines

The World Diamond Council (WDC) has upgraded its System of Warranties program to cover a broader set of commitments when doing business in the diamond industry.

The new System of Warranties (SoW) statement asks sellers of diamond jewelry and rough and polished diamonds to support the universally accepted principles of human and labor rights, anti-corruption, and anti-money laundering, it said Tuesday.

“The upgraded System of Warranties…reflects our vision for a diamond industry that is not only free of conflict, but through its actions also promotes safe and secure working environments, equal opportunity and proper governance,” said WDC president Edward Asscher.

In addition, all SoW users will be required to register on a dedicated website, the WDC noted. The site will require them to complete an annual online self-assessment to gauge their compliance with the new guidelines.

Previously, the SoW only required diamond sellers to include a declaration on invoices stating that the goods they were offering complied with the Kimberley Process (KP) standard of being conflict free.

The KP’s definition of a conflict diamond, which centers on rough diamonds used by rebel movements, has long been a source of contention. For several years, government representatives have been trying to gain a consensus on expanding the meaning to include human- and labor-rights abuses and all forms of systemic violence.

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