World Diamond Council Honors Nicky Oppenheimer

The World Diamond Council paid special tribute to De Beers chairman Nicky Oppenheimer at a gala dinner on May 14, the conclusion of the organization’s eighth annual meeting in Vicenza, Italy.

WDC president Eli Izhakoff presented Oppenheimer with a silver plate in honor of the De Beers chairman’s many years of dedicated support for the World Diamond Council and the Kimberley Process.

Oppenheimer, who was accompanied by his son Jonathan and other senior De Beers officials, said that the World Diamond Council dinner would be the last industry event he would address before his retirement from De Beers.

“Like the Kimberley Process, the WDC will also need to evolve to ensure that it can continue to represent the diamond industry effectively in its engagements with governments and other stakeholders,” Oppenheimer said in a statement. “The industry is growing in its global reach and new consumer markets, emerging trading and polishing centers, and new producers must have an equal voice in the future direction of our industry as they stand alongside more established markets and producers. There is no doubt in my mind that the World Diamond Council’s success over the next few years will be measured in part by how effective it is in building bridges of understanding across the diamond pipeline to the benefit of both producers and markets.”

WDC president Eli Izhakoff (far right) presenting Nicky Oppenheimer (far left) with a commemorative silver plate. Also photographed: (from left): Roberto Coin; Gaetano Cavalieri, CIBJO president; Susan Shabangu, minister of mineral resources of the Republic of South Africa; and Gillian Milovanovic, chair of the Kimberley Process. (Photo courtesy of Donald Woodrow)