The Botswana Diamond Manufacturing Association (BDMA) has been accepted as a new member of the International Diamond Manufacturing Association (IDMA), thus marking another important milestone in Botswana’s journey to becoming a leading diamond center.
The announcement was made at the 2008 IDMA/World Federation of Diamond Bourses (WFDB) conference held in Shanghai, China, last month, where IDMA shared some new developments regarding its membership, management and industry initiatives. The BDMA’s admission now brings IDMA’s total membership to 13.
“The future is Africa. Africa will develop strongly in the next three years. Next year, Botswana will sell 5% of the world’s production,” IDMA Chairman, Moti Ganz said.
Mervin Lifshitz, the BDMA Chairman, stated that the IDMA’s endorsement reinforces Botswana’s emerging role as an important diamond polishing centre.
“The diamond industry in Botswana has had a remarkable few years with the establishment of 16 cutting and polishing factories which are now up and running and operating entities encompassing the full range of ultra-modern manufacturing in an investor friendly environment,” he said.
According to Lifshitz, the other new developments included the opening of the largest and most advanced diamond sorting facility in the world, Botswana Diamond Trading Company (DTC), the development of the Government’s Diamond Hub and association beneficiation activities.
Lifshitz pointed out that the inclusion of Botswana in the IDMA’s membership is another important step in the process.
“It says to the world that not only is Botswana becoming a leading diamond centre, but she is also taking the global diamond related issues seriously,” he elaborated.
He said that Botswana is working in collaboration with other diamond centers to ensure that the highest standards are maintained throughout the industry.
IDMA is an association committed to fostering and promoting the highest ideals of honesty and best practice principles throughout the diamond industry worldwide as well as full compliance with all relevant national and international laws.
Towards this end, the organization has developed and adopted a code of conduct which is binding on all members. The IDMA also works to encourage fair and honourable practices and decent working conditions for those employed in the diamond industry, and to preserve, protect and promote the trust and confidence of consumers in diamonds and diamonds products.
The IDMA moreover encourages and supports social responsibility on the part of the industry in respect of all citizens of the world, and seeks to take a unified leadership role on all issues affecting the industry. This association convenes biennially at the same times as the WFDB at the World Diamond Congress. The Congress included also a session of the general assemblies of both organizations, where joint resolutions were passed on current issues of concern.
The association has played an active role in establishing the Kimberly Process Certification Scheme and is a co-founder of the World Diamond Council.
Still at this conference, the IDMA reaffirmed its commitment for the diamond Development Initiative and involvement in the Council for Responsible Jewelry Practices, (CRJP), as it announced the launch of the “Global diamond marketing and promotion campaign.” This is an initiative expected to raise awareness amongst the manufactures to concentrate on effective advertising and promotion of polished diamonds and diamond jewellery to drive consumer demand.