Zimbabwe Okayed To Export Diamonds

The agreement came as welcome news at the conclusion of the KP mini-summit held alongside the 7th Annual Meeting of World Diamond Council in St. Petersburg.

The agreement outlines, that by September Zimbabwe will be able to carry out two supervised exports of rough diamond from the Marange production, during which, the Kimberley Process will conduct a review mission to Zimbabwe in conjunction with a visit by Kimberley Process Monitor.

This will be followed by a second visit of the Kimberley Process Monitor to Zimbabwe on the week of September 6, to certify the second supervised export. The Kimberley Process Monitoring Committee will review the report issued by the review mission to formulate a position regarding future exports.

KP Chair Boaz Hirsch applauded this feat saying, “If this is a victory for anyone, it is a victory for the Kimberly Process” Also, Eli Izhakoff, the president of the World Diamond Council pointed out that “Although we can regard this as progress, there remains much to do.”

The two-day mini-summit was attended by a senior delegation from the government of Zimbabwe, including Minister of Mining Obert Moses Mpofu, and Zimbabwe’s Attorney General, Johanne Tomama, a high-level delegation from the U.S. State Department led by Susan Page, Assistant U.S. Deputy Secretary of State.

The Plenary Session at St. Petersburg was attended by representatives of the diamond industry from Belgium, Israel, India, Russia, Namibia, South Africa, the United Arab Emirates and the United States, rough diamond producers, representatives of government from producing, cutting and consumer centers, member of the banking community and the media. Another central issue were the steps needed to reform and refine the Kimberley Process, seven years after its rough diamond certification scheme was first launched.