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In the face of the COVID-19 coronavirus, the jewellery industry’s communal sense of responsibility is of paramount importance

MARCH 9, 2020

I write these words from my home in Milan, to which the movement of my family is now restricted, according to new government regulations meant to help prevent the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus. Fortunately, we are all in good health.

Messages of encouragement and good wishes have been flowing in from many of you, and they are much appreciated. The spirit of community and mutual support have always been a feature of the jewellery industry, and these are qualities that are especially valued in times like these.

There is no denying that the COVID-19 coronavirus is impacting our industry and our members. Northern Italy, which represents the heart of the national sector and the jewellery design brain trust of the world, is in virtual shut down, as is China, our second largest market. International travel, which for many of us is the life blood of our business, has been curtailed or suspended, trade shows across the globe have been postponed or canceled, and factories, buying offices, wholesalers and retailers are in standby mode.

At this stage it is very difficult to predict how long this state of virtual suspension will continue. What is certain, however, is that it is temporary. Economies need to function, and human ingenuity will always find ways to adapt to changing conditions.

But it is important to begin considering what needs to be done so that we are able to traverse the current crisis intact as possible, both as an industry and as an association, such as CIBJO.

Inevitably, the first priority must be dealing with the health crisis, and to the greatest degree possible protecting the wellbeing of our families, employees and their dependents.  Courageous decisions have already been taken, by trade shows and conference organizers for example, who selected to spare the prospective participants in their events the dilemma of whether to attend or not. A great deal remains unknown about the real risk posed by the COVID-19 coronavirus, but in the meantime, it is preferable to err on the side of safety.

At the same time, within the framework of the restrictions being imposed to prevent the spread of the virus, we must begin using the tools at our disposal to allow the motor of our business to continue turning. Fortunately, more than during any other period in human history, we have a wealth of instruments in our toolkit.

Travel and face-to-face interactions are preferable, but in their absence teleconferencing, video-chatting, Facebook, Whatsapp and Skype are all viable alternatives. Many employees can work from home and remain productive. Managers can monitor business long distance, and products can be displayed and transactions completed online. The technology is available, and many are already using it.

But there is a caveat. Many of the technology-based solutions for managing a business remotely come with a cost that will be less easily carried by small and medium-sized enterprises. Especially at a time like this, there should be an industry-wide sense of awareness that colleagues who are more vulnerable to the suspension of regular trading norms should be a provided a fair opportunity to catch up and compete.

The stakes are extremely high. We deal in luxury products, but our chain of supply supports communities and sometimes entire countries in some of the world’s most developmentally challenged areas. It is incumbent upon us to put our heads together and chart a way forward for the industry through the uncertainty that the COVID-19 coronavirus has created. It is during times like this that the communal spirit of our industry and the mettle of our members will be truly tried and tested.

In meantime, I send my best wishes to all of you from the determined and life-loving city of Milan. Let us face the challenges that confront us together, optimistic about the future.

Dr. Gaetano Cavalieri
CIBJO President

In the face of the COVID-19 coronavirus, the jewellery industry’s communal sense of responsibility is of paramount importance2020-03-15T11:18:26+00:00

Message from the CIBJO President 09-03-2020

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MESSAGE FROM THE CIBJO PRESIDENT

In the face of the COVID-19 coronavirus, the jewellery industry’s communal sense of responsibility is of paramount importance

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Message from the CIBJO President 09-03-20202020-03-09T10:57:32+00:00

2020 CIBJO Congress to take place in Dubai October 5-7, hosted by DMCC

ABOVE: Almas Tower, the headquarters of DMCC in the heart of Dubai, selected as the venue for 2020 CIBJO Congress.

FEBRUARY 11, 2020

CIBJO, the World Jewellery Confederation, will hold its 2020 annual congress in Dubai, United Arab Emirates (UAE), from October 5 to October 7. Pre-congress meetings will take place October 3 and October 4.

The 2020 congress will be hosted by DMCC (Dubai Multi-Commodities Centre), one of the world’s leading free zones, which is tasked by the Government of Dubai Authority to drive commodities trade and enterprise. With more than 17,000 businesses registered, DMCC sits at the heart of the region’s growing jewellery trade, and is home to the Dubai Diamond Exchange (DDE), the only World Federation of Diamond Bourses (WFDB) accredited bourse in the Arabian Gulf. The Dubai Gold & Commodities Exchange (DGCX), and Dubai Design Academy (DDA) are also based in DMCC.

CIBJO President Gaetano Cavalieri (right), together with the 2020 CIBJO Congress hosts, Ahmed Bin Sulayem (centre), Executive Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, DMCC, and Martin Leake, Special Advisor – Precious Stones, DMCC.

It is the second time that a CIBJO Congress will have taken place in Dubai, with the first being held there in 2008, when it also was hosted by DMCC.

The official venue of the 2020 CIBJO Congress is the Almas Conference Centre, located in the DMCC’s iconic Almas Tower headquarters.

CIBJO congresses serve as the official gathering place for the World Jewellery Confederation’s Assembly of Delegates. They are also the venue for the annual meetings of CIBJO’s sectoral commissions, where amendments can be introduced to the organisation’s definitive directories of international industry standards for diamonds, coloured stones, pearls, gem labs, precious metals, coral and responsible sourcing, known as the Blue Books.

The CIBJO Congress is also where the programme of World Jewellery Confederation Education Foundation (WJCEF), relating to responsible and sustainable activities in the industry and CIBJO’s ongoing cooperation with the United Nations and its development programme is reported upon.

“We are delighted to be returning to Dubai,” said Gaetano Cavalieri, CIBJO President, “which over the past decade has established itself as one of the world’s most important jewelry and gemstone hubs and its third largest diamond trading centres. As a city that straddles both East and West, it is a most fitting venue for our global confederation’s annual congress. We thank the DMCC for its generous invitation.”

“The prestigious CIBJO Congress is one of the most important moments in the international jewellery trade calendar. Selected to host the event for a second time underscores Dubai’s standing in the trade, and role in shaping its future. Hospitality is part of Dubai’s DNA, and DMCC looks forward to welcoming colleagues from across the globe, and joining the conversation at this crucial juncture for the industry,” added Ahmed Bin Sulayem, Executive Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, DMCC.

A dedicated CIBJO Congress 2020 website will be launched shortly.

2020 CIBJO Congress to take place in Dubai October 5-7, hosted by DMCC2020-02-11T14:19:53+00:00

CIBJO release 11-02-2020

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2020 CIBJO Congress to take place in Dubai October 5-7, hosted by DMCC

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CIBJO release 11-02-20202020-02-11T14:07:52+00:00

CIBJO-IEG seminar at VICENZAORO January show looks at how SMEs face the challenge of responsible sourcing and sustainability

“Trust, but verify” is a rhyming Russian proverb (Доверя́й, но проверя́й) that entered the English lexicon in the 1980s, when it was popularised by American President Ronald Reagan in respect to nuclear disarmament. It is now becoming a fact of life for all players in the jewellery industry, where doing due diligence to ensure responsible sourcing practices, verifiable supply chain integrity and social and environmental sustainability is becoming a requirement of doing business.

But the cost of conducting due diligence and becoming involved in projects that promote the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals can be restrictive, especially for smaller and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). It is thus a cause of considerable anxiety in the jewellery sector, where most companies are of limited dimensions. This is especially so in Italy, where all but a handful of firms are SMEs, and most are family owned.

Members of the “Does Size Matter?” panel during the seminar at the VICENZAORO show in Vicenza, Italy, on January 17, 2020. They are (from left): Giorgio Bodei, Director of Pomellato; Iris Van der Veken, Executive Director of the Responsible Jewellery Council (RJC); Philip Olden, President of CIBJO’s Responsible Sourcing Commission, the seminar moderator; Moya McKeown, a Sustainability Advisor at Carbon Expert; and Vincenzo Liverino, President of CIBJO’s Coral Commission.

The pressure to do due diligence is being exerted at both ends of the value chain. At the upstream side, mining companies, and particularly those in the diamond industry, are demanding that their suppliers demonstrably show that they are acting responsibly. Downstream, major retailers are increasingly likely to demand that their suppliers demonstrate that they have conducting due diligence on their own supply chains.

CIBJO President Gaetano Cavalieri greeting the seminar participants.

Marco Carniello, Director of the VICENZAORO shows, delivering a welcome address.

How SMEs can successfully meet these challenges was the subject of a seminar held the first day of the VICENZAORO show in Vicenza, Italy, on January 17, 2020. Entitled “Does Size Matter?”, it was organized by CIBJO and hosted by the Italian Exhibition Group (IEG), which owns the VICENZAORO show. The event was the latest in an ongoing programme designed and operated by the two organisations in support of Corporate Social Responsibility and sustainability in the jewellery sector, which is endorsed by the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC).

The seminar, which was conducted simultaneously in English and Italian, was supported by leading Italian trade organisations, among them Federpreziosi and Club degli Orafi. Steven Tranquilli, Federpreziosi’s Director, and Gabriele Aprea, President of Club degli Orafi, both welcomed the participants, together with CIBJO President Gaetano Cavalieri, and Marco Carniello, Director of the VICENZAORO shows.

Gabriele Aprea, President of Club degli Orafi, addressing the seminar.

Steven Tranquilli, Director of Federpreziosi, speaking to seminar participants.

Moderated by Philip Olden, President of CIBJO’s Responsible Sourcing Commission, and featuring a panel of international speakers, the seminar outlined what is required today in the industry in terms of responsible sourcing, supply chain integrity and environmental sustainability. It also presented the experiences of Italian companies that successfully have incorporated principles of CSR and sustainability in their businesses.

The purpose of the seminar was to provide practical guidance. The speakers outlined what is a required in terms of responsible sourcing, supply chain integrity and sustainability, and then presented a range of alternative solutions.

PRESENTATIONS

Philip Olden, President, CIBJO Responsible Sourcing Commission, United Kingdom

Mr. Olden, who served as moderator of the seminar, outlined the principles for responsible sourcing in CIBJO’s Responsible Sourcing Blue Book, emphasizing how they are designed to be adopted by all players in the industry, irrespective of size.

Iris Van der Veken, Executive Director, Responsible Jewellery Council (RJC), United Kingdom

Ms. Van der Veken described the operation of the jewellery industry standards and certification organisation, whose Code of Practice now includes gold, silver, platinum group metals, diamonds and coloured gemstones. She noted that 146 of RJC’s more than 1,200 members are Italian, with many of them SMEs.

Moya McKeown, Sustainability Advisor, Carbon Expert, Spain

Ms. McKeown described CIBJO’s Jewellery Industry Greenhouse Gas Measurement Initiative, which is a designed to enable members of the industry estimate their carbon footprint and then neutralise it, as part of the worldwide effort to limit the pace of global warming and climate change.

Vincenzo Liverino, President, CIBJO Coral Commission, Italy

As CIBJO Coral Commission, Mr. Liverino has championed a programme aimed at conserving the deep-water precious coral reefs, as well the shallow-water common coral reefs that are today under threat from global warming. As an SME, he is an adopter of the CIBJO Jewellery Industry Greenhouse Gas Initiative, and provides his perspective on how the jewellery industry may play its part in facing the challenge of climate change.

Giorgio Bodei, Director, Pomellato, Italy

Mr Bodei describes the efforts of Pomellato, which is part of the Kering Group and is one of Italy’s leading jewelry manufacturers, to ensure that all its suppliers, many of which are smaller companies, follow responsible sourcing practices. He highlighted the firm’s  Nuvola Collection, which includes gold exclusively  sourced from artisanal miners, all of whom have been certified by the Fairmined organisation.  (Presentation in Italian)

CIBJO-IEG seminar at VICENZAORO January show looks at how SMEs face the challenge of responsible sourcing and sustainability2020-01-22T09:03:48+00:00

CIBJO-IEG seminar at VICENZAORO January show to focus on the challenges faced by SMEs in meeting social responsibility and sustainability requirements

JANUARY 13, 2020

With responsible sourcing policies, verifiable supply chain integrity and social and environmental sustainability fast becoming requirements for companies operating in the jewellery sector, small and medium-sized enterprises are feeling increasingly pressured. The cost of conducting due diligence can be restrictive, and often is a source of anxiety,  particularly in Italy, where all but a handful of companies are SMEs and family owned.

But, as more major retailers require that suppliers demonstrate they have conducted due diligence as a requirement of doing business, and key mining companies demand that clients comply with minimum standards to be eligible for direct supply, SMEs are searching for solutions that will allow them to meet to meet expectations. They will be the subjects of a seminar during the first day of the upcoming VICENZAORO show in Vicenza, Italy, organized by CIBJO and hosted by the Italian Exhibition Group (IEG).

Moderated by Philip Olden, President of CIBJO’s Responsible Sourcing Commission, it will take place on Friday, January 17, 2020, from  11:00 AM to 1:00 PM in the Tiziano Room, Hall 7.1 of the Vicenza Exposition Centre. The seminar is being supported by leading Italian trade organisations, among them Federpreziosi and Club degli Orafi. Steven Tranquilli, Federpreziosi’s Director, and Gabriele Aprea, President of Club degli Orafi, are featured speakers.

Entitled “Does Size Matter?”, the seminar will provide practical guidance and viable solutions geared for SMEs operating in the international jewellery sector, outlining what is required today in the industry in terms of responsible sourcing, supply chain integrity and environmental sustainability. Featuring a panel of international speakers, it also will present the experiences of smaller Italian companies that successfully have incorporated principles of CSR and sustainability in their businesses.

The seminar will be conducted simultaneously in English and Italian. It is the latest edition in a series of educational programmes organized by CIBJO and IEG in support of Corporate Social Responsibility and sustainability in the jewellery sector, and is endorsed by the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC).

“We are committed to the principle that, to the greatest degree possible, every ethical member of our industry should enjoy fair access both to supply and the markets,” said CIBJO President Gaetano Cavalieri. “We also contend that all members of our industry are reasonably able to conduct basic due diligence on their supply chains. How that can be done will come under the spotlight in Vicenza.”

CIBJO-IEG seminar at VICENZAORO January show to focus on the challenges faced by SMEs in meeting social responsibility and sustainability requirements2020-01-13T10:26:11+00:00