Russia’s Deputy Minister and 2021 Kimberley Process (KP) Chair Alexey Moiseev said the digitalisation of KP Certificates accompanying every export-import of rough natural diamonds would be a priority area for the KP. He was speaking at the 2021 KP Intersessional Meeting being attended by members in a virtual environment from 21st to 25th June, 2021.
Russia’s Ministry of Finance said in a release that the key topics of the KP agenda will largely reflect the Russian chairmanship’s priorities aimed at ensuring the sustainable development of the global diamond industry, particularly under the impact of Covid-19 pandemic.
At the moment, KP does not possess a global digital platform for exchange of information, and the implementation of a digital certificate is in itself a complex technological solution for the KP, the statement said.
“Russia has the necessary infrastructure and legislation that allows such a project to be realised, if the KP family made a decision to do so. We are happy to share the experience on the issue. Russia intends to use its digital customs platform as a means of advancing the digital exchange of information on KP Certificates with key countries importing Russian diamonds,” noted Moiseev.
It is vital for the future development of KP that, following the results of the Plenary Meeting of 2021, KP participants support the so-called “Principles of Responsible Diamond Sourcing” as the best practice for the industry.
“We also hope to continue the discussion on reaching consensus in the review of the ‘conflict diamonds’ definition as the topic is gaining new relevance with the diamond industry recovering after the Covid-19 pandemic. It is important we do not let the progress made in 2019 go to waste,” added Moiseev.
As KP Chair, Russia will also work well to stabilise the situation in the diamond industry in the Central African Republic (CAR) with the aim of helping the CAR government strengthen procedures to control diamond exports and prevent conflict diamonds from entering the global supply chain.
Constructive interaction of the KP CAR Monitoring Team and a detailed dialogue will make it possible to assess the possibility of making decisions on the compliance or non-compliance of individual areas within CAR with the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme (KPCS) minimum requirements. It will also help to evaluate the effectiveness of the current verification mechanism for diamond shipments exported from CAR within the KP framework, the statement noted.
Russia also expects to reach a consensus regarding the location of the permanent KP Secretariat. “It will help systematise the work of the KP Working bodies and introduce effective mechanisms of administrative support for implementation of the KPCS by the participating countries. We will also continue to work on expanding the KP family with new participants seeking to contribute to further development of global conflict-free trade in rough diamonds,” it stated.
In 2020, the KP made a consensus-based decision to postpone the Chairmanship of the Russian Federation from 2020 to 2021 due to the pandemic. Given the recovery in business activities, the Chairmanship in 2021 will take place in a full format, but the Intersessional Meeting is being held online.