The origin of our diamonds

We live up to our responsibility in the luxury-product sector.

We are the most important trade and innovation partner of the sector’s major brands. We also shape the world of jewelry and timepieces as a designer and producer. Our business activities are transparent and traceable. Because of our leading position in the sector, we define our mission as follows: We know that the precious items we produce and sell are very powerful symbols. In many cases, they are handed down from one generation to the next. Our customers expect us to ensure that the value of these products is authentic and untainted. We therefore regard the struggle to remove conflict diamonds from the market as our responsibility.

Conflict diamonds

The United Nations define conflict diamonds as “rough diamonds […] which are used by rebel movements to finance their military activities, including attempts to undermine or overthrow legitimate governments.” (Resolution 55/56; adopted by the 79th General Assembly on December 1, 2000). In the 1990s it became public knowledge that these illegally mined diamonds were a major source of finance for the civil wars that were being fought on the continent of Africa.

The Kimberley Process

In May 2000, representatives of several diamond-producing and processing countries met in Kimberley, South Africa, in order to stop the trade in illegal diamonds and end these civil wars. In December of that year, the General Assembly of the United Nations adopted a resolution to create an international certification system for rough diamonds.

On November 5, 2002, 52 governments of countries all over the world established the Kimberley Process. Since then, 55 governments, in cooperation with NGOs and the diamond industry, have committed themselves to compliance with the rules established in the Kimberley Process: Rough diamonds must be transported in sealed containers that can be identified by means of a numbered and forgery-proof certificate of origin that is issued by the government authorities. Countries that do not comply with these rules face the imposition of sanctions and exclusion from the diamond trade. Since the introduction of the Kimberley Process, the proportion of conflict diamonds has been reduced to less than one percent. In other words, more than 99 percent of all diamonds are conflict-free.

 

System of Warranties

The System of Warranties (SOW) is a continuation of the Kimberley Process. It applies to cut diamonds and requires the dealers to issue a guarantee certificate that is handed on every time the diamond changes owners. With this certificate the dealers guarantee that the diamonds are conflict-free.

Wempe’s responsibility

We assure you that we sell only natural and conflict-free diamonds. Our trustworthy long-term suppliers guarantee that our diamonds come from conflict-free sources. This warranty is confirmed on all the invoices issued for the diamonds. Diamonds are one of the world’s most valuable mineral resources. The legal trade in diamonds is a key factor in the economic development of many countries. The measures of the Kimberley Process are designed so as not to impede the legal trade in diamonds, and in particular not to unduly encumber smaller producers.

 

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