Milan: With seven weeks to go to the opening of the 2016 CIBJO Congress in Yerevan, Armenia, on October 26, 2016, the third of the CIBJO commissions’ Special Reports has been released. Prepared by the CIBJO Diamond Commission, headed by Udi Sheintal, the report reviews the impacts of technology, both positive and negative, on the jewellery industry and trade, and investigates ways in which the business should react.
The report studies two developments in particular. The first is synthetic diamonds. In this respect it reiterates standards introduced by CIBJO to clearly distinguish between natural and man-made gems. In 2015 these essentially were adopted by the International Standards Organization, when it released ISO International Standard 18323, which specifies a set of permitted descriptors for the diamond industry that are designed to be understood by the consumer. The report then outlines a number of variables, including investment in generic marketing campaigns, which ultimately will decide the degree to which the introduction of gem-quality synthetics into the market will affect the price of naturally mined stones.
The second development concerns scanning technologies that have been created in recent years that enable rough dealers to accurately map the internal inclusions in a diamond. Specifically, the report investigates the ethical implications of such technologies, and considers whether rough dealers who have scanned their stones are obliged to inform clients that they have done so, and even possibly divulge the results.
“Technology has become an integral component in our business, and just as we need to adapt to the changes that it has instigated, the developers of technology should be cognizant that their products serve the greater good of the industry from which they benefit,” writes Diamond Commission President Udi Sheintal in the report. “In this respect it is important that constant dialogue take place between the industry and the technology developers with the understanding that, ultimately, our long-term interests are the same, and that is we should have a healthy and profitable diamond and jewellery business.”