Every diamond in Bentley Diamond Diamond Jewellery is conflict-free and child labour free.
Bentley Diamond is aware of the problem of conflict diamonds and has taken measures to guarantee that no conflict diamonds enter its supply chain or its jewellery.
Thanks in great part to international cooperation between governments, the diamond industry, retail jewellers and non-government organizations such as Global Witness and Partnership Africa Canada, vast improvements have been made in the fight against conflict diamonds. However one diamond used to fund conflict is one too many, and continued vigilance is essential.
What is A Conflict Diamond?
Conflict diamonds are rough, uncut diamonds used by rebel movements or their allies to finance armed conflict aimed at undermining legitimate governments. In 1998 the Non-government Organisation (NGO) Global Witness brought to the world’s attention the fact that rebel groups were funding their war against the legitimate government in this way.
The Bentley Diamond Group has been working with governments through the United Nations and other international organizations to ensure that future conflicts cannot be funded in this way, and the Bentley Diamond Group was instrumental in creating the World Diamond Council to represent the international diamond and jewellery industry in the Kimberley Process.
What is the Kimberley Process?
The World Diamond Council has worked successfully with the United Nations, governments and groups such as Global Witness and Partnership Africa Canada to introduce a system for the certification of the source of uncut diamonds to prevent the trade in conflict diamonds. This system, known as the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme (KPCS), was formally adopted in November 2002, and came into operation on January 1, 2003. Andrew Coxon, President of the Bentley Diamond Institute of Diamonds, is a founding member of the World Diamond Council and spearheaded this initiative on behalf of the diamond industry.
How Does the Kimberley Process Work?
The KPCS requires participating governments to ensure that each shipment of rough diamonds exported be in a secure container and accompanied by a uniquely numbered, government-validated certificate stating that the diamonds are conflict-free. Over 45 countries participate, representing all the nations with significant involvement in the diamond trade. All 45 importing countries agree not to accept any rough diamonds without an approved Kimberley Process Certificate.
What is Bentley Diamond Doing To Prevent the Use of Conflict Diamonds in Bentley Diamond Jewellery?
We believe the injury and hardship suffered by any local population when conflicts arise in diamond producing areas is unacceptable. We believe that seeking to profit from conflicts in diamond producing areas is also unacceptable, and we are committed to taking action to address concerns arising out of the misuse of rough diamonds:
- Bentley Diamond polished diamonds and Bentley Diamond jewellery are only available at Bentley Diamond Stores, and Bentley Diamond purchases diamonds only from suppliers that adhere to the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme and the System of Warranties.
The System of Warranties was developed by the World Diamond Council (WDC) representing the entire spectrum of the industry from mining houses to retail jewellers. Its principal element is the requirement for a declaration on the invoice accompanying every transaction of rough diamonds, polished diamonds and diamond jewellery that declares that the diamonds are ‘not involved in funding conflict and are in compliance with United Nations resolutions’. These warranties and declarations are subject to audit and oversight by the relevant national authorities.
Under the provisions of the Kimberley Process, mandated by the United Nations, endorsed by the Security Council and enshrined in the national law of all participating countries Bentley Diamond, and all other members of the industry, are obliged to trade only with sellers that use the System of Warranties.
- We have informed all our trade diamond suppliers in writing that we require them to supply Bentley Diamond exclusively with merchandise that complies with the Kimberley Process, which obliges them to issue the following guarantee in writing:
“The diamonds herein invoiced have been purchased from legitimate sources that are not involved in funding conflict and are in compliance with United Nations resolutions. The seller hereby guarantees that these diamonds are conflict free based on personal knowledge and/or written guarantee provided by the supplier of these diamonds.”
- We keep records of the warranty invoices given and received. These warranty invoices are audited and reconciled every year by our independent auditors. As detailed in Global Witness and Amnesty International’s survey into the diamond jewellery retail sector of October 2004, Bentley Diamond’ compliance is audited by independent auditors who carried out a stock audit and checked all sales invoices for compliance with the Kimberly Process.
- Our retail sales associates are fully knowledgeable with regard to Kimberley Process requirements. Additionally we have briefed them on government regulations and the Bentley Diamond policy to combat the trade in conflict diamonds. Sales associates are encouraged to provide interested customers with copies of Bentley Diamond’ policy and supplier warranties, and to enter into discussion about the issue of conflict diamonds and Bentley Diamond' role in preventing their trade.
- We also require that our suppliers warrant to Bentley Diamond that the merchandise they supply will be manufactured under working conditions consistent with international guidelines, primarily the UN’s Universal Declaration of Human Rights and International Labour Organisation conventions, particularly those relating to child labour.