Stéphane Fischler has taken the helm at the International Diamond Council, He succeeds Edward Asscher, who served as chairman of IDC since 1990.
IDC is the consultative body created in 1975 by the World Federation of Diamond Bourses and the International Diamond Manufacturers Association to regulate diamond grading standards, rules, working methods, and nomenclature.
The decision to appoint Fischler was endorsed by the WFDB and IDMA leadership, when they met at the Presidents’ Meeting in Amsterdam in June.
Fischler is currently Secretary General and Treasurer of IDMA, and is also vice president of the Antwerp World Diamond Centre and president of the European Council of Diamond Manufacturers.
Fischler said one of his primary goals as IDC chairman is achieving general harmonization of diamond grading standards. Toward that end, he said he intends working in close cooperation with CIBJO, the World Jewellery Confederation.
“CIBJO’s established diamond nomenclature is very similar to that of IDC and I am sure that in a relatively brief time we can come to complete understanding,” Fischler said. “We share CIBJO’s vision, which is a single international standard for polished diamond grading. We appreciate that this cannot be achieved overnight, but that is what we are working toward,” Fischler said.
Cooperation among the industry organizations could serve other goals as well, Fischler said.
“One of the other things we would like to achieve is a minimum ISO certification standard for procedures at [gemological] laboratories. All of the labs that subscribe to IDC rules already are ISO certified, as are a number of the CIBJO affiliated labs, and we’d like to see more labs that operate internationally going in the same direction. The fact that labs operate according to strict and accepted international standards enhance the consumer’s confidence in their ability of gem labs to render reliable and consistent grading services.”
In the short term, Fischler said, an overriding concern for IDC is to resolve the issue of nomenclature for synthetic diamonds.
“We hope that the synthetic diamond producers agree to openly describe their products as ‘synthetic,’ ‘man-made’ or ‘laboratory-grown,’ which clearly will differentiate them from natural diamonds. It is a compromise that we believe other industry organizations will agree to,” he said.