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Several initiatives have been formed to combat undisclosed mixing of diamonds
Several initiatives have been formed to combat undisclosed mixing of diamonds

India moves to tackle lab-created diamond fears

In news that should be comforting to the local industry, a number of Indian-based trade groups have announced initiatives to manage concerns regarding the undisclosed mixing of lab-created and natural diamonds.   

The GJEPC has moved to allay fears of further non-disclosure
The GJEPC has moved to allay fears of further non-disclosure

After several incidents where lab-created (synthetic) diamonds were mixed with natural stones, the Indian Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC) has moved to allay fears of further non-disclosure.

India is the largest supplier of diamonds to the Australia and New Zealand market, and, according to the GJPEC, concerns about the disclosure – or lack of disclosure – of combining synthetic and natural diamonds have heightened recently due to media reports of specific occasions where undisclosed mixing of diamonds were detected.

The GJEPC and Bharat Diamond Bourse (BDB) are currently investigating two cases and the businesses affected have been directed to file complaints.

As part of its aim to increase transparency about the use of synthetic and natural diamonds, the council has also formed a Natural Diamond Monitoring Committee with various other trade associations.

The main goals of the committee include: protecting the overall interests of the natural diamond industry; enhancing consumer confidence by encouraging proper disclosure; ensuring proper segregation of natural diamonds and synthetic diamonds; and formulating policies in order to avoid any scenario of synthetic diamonds being misrepresented and passed off as natural diamonds during business transactions.

An enhanced understanding
Industry experts A T Kearney (a global management consulting company) and Bonas (a diamond broking and consultancy company) have also been appointed by the GJEPC to assist in better understanding the landscape of lab-grown diamonds and their impact on the industry.

The companies will take part in a project to develop a framework for industry members that trade in natural and synthetic diamonds. A steering committee is said to be meeting regularly to drive the Natural Diamond Monitoring Committee’s agenda and look after the completion of the project, which is expected to finish in February 2014.

A GJEPC media release states that following completion, the GJEPC as well as national and international trade bodies along with the Indian government will formulate strategies to address the issues identified and produce necessary guidelines.

The GJEPC and BDB have also hosted two seminars on lab-created diamonds in order to create awareness among members and will develop a Man-Made Diamonds Quick Detection and Resource Centre in the next month. The centre will offer facilities for quick detection of lab-grown diamonds in addition to providing equipment for detection and training for operating the equipment.

The GJEPC is based in India and was established in 1966. It has 5,500 members and is primarily involved in introducing gemstones and jewellery to the international market.

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