WFDB supports logo, issues statement on synthetic and treated diamond disclosure

The World Federation of Diamond Bourses has again voiced its determination to develop a trademarked logo to ensure that the WFDB abides by its “better business” principles.

The WFDB Executive Committee, in a meeting earlier this month, again voiced their support for the “WFDB Mark.” This trademarked logo would be displayed by “approved members” of the WFDB-affiliated diamond exchanges to ensure their suppliers and clients that they meet strict business and ethical standards that are being created by the Antwerp organization.

The development of the WFDB Mark is part of a strategic plan that was first introduced by WFDB president Shmuel Schnitzer in October 2004. The plan involves the WFDB’s accrediting the ethical standards individual members of affiliated diamond exchanges, on condition that they ascribe to a range of strict business practices that will be described and audited by the WFDB.

“The WFDB traditionally has been regarded as a body which focuses exclusively upon the internal trading relationships of its affiliated bourses and their members,” Schnitzer said in a statement. “Today, in a globalized economy, in which the stakes of consumer confidence are so high, we feel it imperative that we create for our organization a profile that will be seen and appreciated by the consuming public. Our strategic plan and the development of the WFDB Mark are part of that effort. The WFDB was created to engender responsible and ethical business practices, and by showing to the public how we do this we will able to provide support to individual diamantaires.”

The executive committee also took a formal position in regard to gem quality synthetic diamonds. The organization’s legal counsel David Woolf, in cooperation with Freddy Hager, WFDB’s deputy treasurer created a statement that describes the WFDB position. The statement reads, in part:

The World Federation of Diamond Bourses (WFDB) represents 25 Diamond Bourses in 17 countries throughout the world, with approximately 15,000 individual members. It is the guardian of the diamond trade and lays down standards of ethical conduct with the object of:

• confirming the natural diamond as the supreme affirmation of love,
• supporting and underpinning consumer confidence in the integrity (and the rarity) of the natural diamond.

The WFDB has no interest in the suppression of the production of, or trade in synthetics. The only problematic area lies in the possible non-disclosure by unscrupulous traders of the fact that a stone offered for sale might be synthetic, or that a natural diamond may have been treated.

To this end the WFDB has prevailed upon diamond certification laboratories clearly and unequivocally to distinguish such items, and upon other organized trade bodies to ensure that their own members fully disclose such features, which is absolutely mandatory for members of bourses affiliated to the WFDB.

Any member of an affiliated bourse failing to make such disclosure is liable to the most severe disciplinary procedures as well as possible criminal sanctions.

The above is in line with the “best practice principles” advocated and championed by the WFDB. By dealing with a member of a bourse affiliated to the WFDB the consumer is assured of integrity and the greatest possible protection of his/her interests.”

In other action, the Executive Committee agreed to co-chair an industry-wide Consumer Confidence Commission, together with CIBJO, The World Jewellery Confederation. The joint commission will be chaired by Ernest Blom, WFDB vice president.