Africans should leverage natural resources into economic development, CIBJO President tells Zimbabwe Diamond Conference in Harare

Noting the responsibility of the greater jewellery industry towards society, CIBJO President Gaetano Cavalieri has recognized the need of African diamond producing countries to leverage their natural resources into sustainable economic development for their countries’ citizens. He was speaking during the opening day of the Zimbabwe Diamond Conference in Harare.

“These are historic days for the diamond industry. Whereas once the compass always pointed north to London, today it points south. Quite possibly it always should have pointed in that southerly direction, but now there is no question,” Dr. Cavalieri said.

As Zimbabwe and the other African producing countries understand well, Dr. Cavalieri stated, it the business of diamonds that is able to translate demand for luxury products into economic opportunity in developing countries.

“While jewellery is a non-essential item, in certain parts of the world the jewellery industry is an essential business sector, providing a livelihood and looking after the wellbeing of literally millions of ordinary people. Our obligation is to ensure that our activities provide them with sustainable economic opportunities that will help secure the future of generations to come,” he stated.

The gemstone and jewellery industries have obligation to take care of all their dependents, reaching back to the very start of the chain of distribution, he said. “In the gemstone and mineral sectors, stakeholder sustainability means investing in the communities so that their natural resources will continue to pay dividends long after the resources themselves are depleted,” Dr. Cavalieri noted.

Paying tribute to Eli Izhakoff, the founding president of the World Diamond Council, who addressed the opening session of the conference, Dr. Cavalieri said: “There are those who like to describe members of the business community as being unconcerned about anything other than profit and loss. Eli showed that this is not an accurate perception. Yes, we are always interested in the bottom line, but we understand that to achieve sustainable success, it is necessary to provide benefit to all stakeholders.”

Photo Caption: CIBJO President Gaetano Cavalieri addressing the Zimbabwe Diamond Conference in Harare.

Africans should leverage natural resources into economic development, CIBJO President tells Zimbabwe Diamond Conference in Harare2016-03-18T12:40:58+00:00

CIBJO and Panama Diamond Exchange agree to develop programs to promote Corporate Social Responsibility in Latin America

The Panama Diamond Exchange and CIBJO, the World Jewellery Confederation, have agreed to join forces in providing educational programs for the gemstone and jewelry sectors in Latin America, instilling the principles of Corporate Social Responsibility. To seal the agreement, a Memorandum of Understanding was signed in Panama by Eli Izhakoff, PDE’s Founding Chairman, and Gaetano Cavalieri, CIBJO President.

Party to the agreement is the World Jewellery Confederation Education Foundation (WJCEF), which was established by CIBJO with the assistance of the United Nations, with the goal of educating members of the diamond, gemstone and jewelry industries about the principles of Corporate Social Responsibility, and how they may implement them in their businesses.

According to the Memorandum of Understanding, the educational programs, which will be delivered in Panama and elsewhere in the region, will include seminars, workshops and conferences, covering the principles of ethical business practices, supply chain integrity and social, economic and environmental sustainability. As has been the case with similar programs organized by CIBJO and WJCEF, specialist instructors endorsed by the UN Economic and Social Council may participate. Graduates will receive diplomas bearing the official seal of WJCEF.

“For PDE this is an important milestone, for we consider the establishment of ethical business structures in Latin America to be part of our mission,” said Mr. Izhakoff. “To optimize their real potential, the gemstone and jewelry industries in the region need to be fully engaged with the international trade, and in today’s environment that means complying with strict proper business standards and transparency. It is to help them achieve this that the agreement was concluded.”

“We are delighted to be joining with PDE in this program, which we believe will not only promote CSR and sustainability in the Latin American countries, but also will accelerate their growth and their share of the region’s luxury product markets,” said Dr. Cavalieri.  “Just as we are convinced that the gemstone and jewelry industry will benefit directly from the physical and commercial infrastructure that is being in developed in Panama, so do we believe that it will profit from a business that is managed in a principled manner.”

The Panama Gem & Jewelry Center, which is anchored by PDE, the region’s only recognized diamond exchange, is the largest and most ambitious development project ever undertaken on behalf of the jewelry and gemstone trades in Latin America. Serving as a trading hub for both regional and international companies, the center will serve a market that today is worth $8 billion.

Photo Caption: CIBJO President Getano Cavalieri (left) and PDE Founding Chairman Eli Izhakoff signing the MOU.

CIBJO and Panama Diamond Exchange agree to develop programs to promote Corporate Social Responsibility in Latin America2017-12-07T11:56:49+00:00

Gaetano Cavalieri meets with Lord Deben, Chairman of UK sustainability consultancy, Sancroft, discusses promoting CIBJO’s environmental and ethical education campaign for jewellery industry

CIBJO President Gaetano Cavalieri has held a meeting in London with The Right Honourable John Gummer, Lord Deben, Chairman of the ethical trade consultancy Sancroft, during which he discussed CIBJO’s educational programme for a environmentally and socially responsible jewellery industry, which was outlined at the CIBJO Congress in Moscow in May.

A renowned authority on environmental sustainability, Lord Deben served at different times as the British Secretary of State for the Environment, Minister of State for Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, and Chair of the Conservative Party before entering the House of Lords in 2010 as a Conservative peer in 2010.

Also attending the meeting were Adrian Gahan, Managing Director Sancroft International, and Vivien Johnston, Corporate Social Responsibility Manager of the Gemmological Association of Great Britain (Gem-A) and Chair of the Jewellery Ethics Committee of the United Kingdom.

“Lord Deben has been a pioneering figure in the sustainability field in the United Kingdom, and being able to sit down with him provided both opportunity to learn, as well as to explain what we would like to achieve in the jewellery sector,” said Dr. Cavalieri, after the meeting. “For many years, our view of Corporate Social Responsibility was almost entirely focused on protecting the integrity of the chain of distribution. This is critically important, of course, but as members of a greater society we have other obligations as well, and that includes providing a healthy and sustainable environment for future generations.”

The issue of how companies can reduce the amount of pollution they create was the primary focus of CIBJO’s  Marketing and Education Commission at the CIBJO Congress in May, and prior to the event CIBJO measured its carbon footprint, to serve as an example to the industry.

In February Dr. Cavalieri had introduced CIBJO’s environmental doctrine at the Pacific Precious Coral Forum in Taiwan, where he stressed that the industry needs to let the world know that it “and the environmentalists are on the same side, and that the rising carbon dioxide emissions which warm the oceans and irresponsible harvesting methods, all of which endanger the reefs, are our enemies as well as theirs.”

In June, he addressed the issue of environmental sustainability in the cultured pearl sector at the Sustainable Pearls Forum in Hong Kong, noting that “when consumers buy an item of pearl jewellery, they should feel that they have invested in our planet’s long-term survival, rather than having taken advantage of it.”

Photo Caption: Lord Deben (right), Chairman of the Chairman of the UK-based ethical trade consultancy Sancroft,, standing together with Gaetano Cavalieri (centre), CIBJO President, and Vivien Johnston, Corporate Social Responsibility Manager of the Gemmological Association of Great Britain (Gem-A) and Chair of the Jewellery Ethics Committee of the United Kingdom.

Gaetano Cavalieri meets with Lord Deben, Chairman of UK sustainability consultancy, Sancroft, discusses promoting CIBJO’s environmental and ethical education campaign for jewellery industry2016-03-18T12:38:29+00:00

Gemmological Association of Great Britain awards Gaetano Cavalieri with Honorary Fellowship

CIBJO President Gaetano Cavalieri has been a named an Honorary Fellow of the Gemmological Association of Great Britain (Gem-A) in recognition of his outstanding contribution to the field of gemmology.   The award was made by Gem-A President Harry Levy during the association’s graduation ceremony at Goldsmith’s Hall in London on November 3.

With its goal of advancing the science and practice of gemmology though education and training, Gem-A is the world’s longest established provider of gem and jewellery education, with its Gemmology Diploma being a direct descendant of the gem course that was proposed for the UK jewellery trade in 1908. Today the organisation provides courses in gemmology and diamond grading in some 25 countries around the world, and also produces two trade publications, Gems & Jewellery and The Journal of Gemmology.

“Gaetano has been a significant figure in shaping the industry over the last 10 years,” said James Riley, Gem-A’s CEO, “obtaining UN recognition of CIBJO and its associated bodies, and ensuring that the voice of the jewellery industry is represented on the world stage.”

“Gem-A is delighted to be able to award Gaetano an Honorary Fellowship in light of his efforts on behalf of both the association and the wider industry. The work he has done on issues of ethics and social responsibility is unparalleled and we’re certain that his continued work will only strengthen the industry and leave a lasting legacy we can all be proud of,” Mr. Riley added.

Photo Caption: Harry Levy (left), President of the Gemmological Association of Great Britain (Gem-A), presenting the Honorary Fellowship recognition to CIBJO President Gaetano Cavalieri.

Gemmological Association of Great Britain awards Gaetano Cavalieri with Honorary Fellowship2017-12-07T11:56:49+00:00

Gem-A launching CSR course developed in conjunction with CIBJO, WJCEF and Branded Trust

The Gemmological Association of Great Britain (Gem-A) will hold a champagne reception on Sunday, August 31, at the 2014 International Jewellery London trade show, in celebration of the upcoming launch of the association’s new course in Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) for the jewellery professional, which it  developed in conjunction with CIBJO and its educational arm, the World Jewellery Confederation Education Foundation (WJCEF), and Branded Trust.

Gem-A’s new CSR course aims to provide the industry with an essential foundation for CSR which can be incorporated into any size business, no matter where it is located in the jewellery supply chain. The online course provides a series of interactive lectures, delivered by experts in all the relevant areas, and supplemented with readings, tests and a written essay; and provides a unique perspective on how to tackle issues of CSR in the jewellery industry.

Gem-A has been working with CIBJO, WJCEF and Branded Trust over the last year to help the jewellery industry realise the growing importance of CSR as an essential aspect of professional accreditation, and how it is becoming increasingly clear that customers now expect jewellery professionals to be able to advise on non-technical issues such as the source of jewellery components, and the social and environmental impact of their jewellery purchase.

The course aims to assist jewellers in this process by giving a structured outline of the benefits of CSR and how a range of businesses can use different tools and techniques to assist in implementing a CSR programme, building trust, and improving overall business performance.

“We are delighted to have ben part of the venture and congratulate Gem-A and Branded Trust for delivering to the industry a set of practical tools that are today essential in the business environment,” said Gaetano Cavalieri, CIBJO President. “CSR needs to work at the grass roots level, and this is what is being done here.”

Gem-A’s Ethics Manager, Vivien Johnston, commented on the new CSR-focussed offering, saying: “Working alongside Branded Trust we have come up with a number of superb modules that give straight-forward, practical, and actionable advice for the jewellery professional to increase their company’s ethical value. For anyone serious about tracking the impact of their business practices and improving the areas, environments and communities they do business in, Gem-A and Branded Trust’s new CSR course can give real measurable advice on how to start becoming a more socially responsible company.”

These comments were echoed by Gem-A CEO James Riley, who discussed how Gem-A are aiming to be on the forefront of how CSR is introduced and measured within the jewellery industry, by saying: “For the last few years ‘Ethics’, and ideas about being ‘Ethical’, ‘Green’, or ‘Socially Responsible’ have been bandied around the jewellery industry like they’re going out of fashion. We think it’s great that the conversation about issues surrounding CSR and how we, as an industry, tackle them, has begun. However, problems remain with the industry being able to validate these claims with real practical measures for educating and tracking company policy and its impacts. Gem-A and Branded Trust hope to change this with an industry-wide push for the validation and accreditation of those committed to a socially responsible supply chain through a series of initiatives, starting with this new CSR-focussed professional qualification.”

Attendees of this year’s IJL show will be treated to a free glass of champagne and an exclusive first glimpse at the new course and the Branded Trust system at Gem-A stand J31 from 12.30 PM on Sunday, August 31. Early adopters are able to register their interest on the stand and make sure they’re the first students to officially enrol on the course, for a one-off fee of £595. The course also will be featured at Gem-A’s booth (3M046) at the Hong Kong Jewellery & Gem Fair, September 17-21.

The London-Based  Gemmological Association of Great Britain, or Gem-A, is the world’s longest established provider of gem education and a membership organisation that forms an international community of gem professionals and enthusiasts, whose goal is  to serve the best interests of the gem and jewellery industries worldwide through its commitment to supporting gemmological research and high educational and trade standards.

Australia-based Branded Trust is an academic group that engages with industry bodies, public sector organisations and social responsibility practitioners from companies of all sized to research and develop sensible and cost effective solutions to the challenges of understanding and implementing social responsibility. The Branded Trust Foundation has supported the development and testing of social responsibility tools such as the world’s first social responsibility management system and the world’s first automated ethical supply-chain and chain of custody solution.

For more information, please contact Gem-A via information@gem-a.com or +44(0)207 404 3334.

Gem-A launching CSR course developed in conjunction with CIBJO, WJCEF and Branded Trust2017-12-07T11:56:49+00:00

Gaetano Cavalieri addresses High Level Segment of ECOSOC in New York, stresses jewellery sector’s commitment to sustainable development

CIBJO President Gaetano Cavalieri has addressed the High Level Segment of the United Nations Economic and Social Council in New York, and in his presentation stressed the commitment of both CIBJO and the international jewellery sector to assisting the United Nations meet its development goals.

Dr. Cavalieri was addressing the annual keynote gathering the UN agency as the head of the  jewellery industry’s industry’ only organisation with special consultative status with ECOSOC, which is had since 2006. CIBJO was also one of only a handful of NGOs with special consultative status invited to make a formal oral statement before the 2014 High Level Segment.

Dr. Cavalieri was accompanied in New York by Corrado Facco, Managing Director of Italian trade fair organiser Fiera di Vicenza, which has been accredited by the United Nations to deliver a UN recognised Corporate Social Responsibility programmes for the jewellery industry together with CIBJO, and Professor Alba Cappellieri, who heads the prestigious jewellery design department at Politecnico di Milano university, which features a series that focuses specifically on the creation of responsible and sustainable jewellery.

In his address to the gathering, Dr. Cavalieri reviewed CIBJO’s efforts to promote an industry-wide understanding that the jewellery industry should provide both sustainable and social development opportunities in the countries and regions where its stakeholders reside.

CIBJO, Dr. Cavalieri said, has been unrelenting in promoting the UN Development Agenda and the Millennium Development Goals. “For almost 10 years, CIBJO and its worldwide membership have not only integrated the MDGs in the activities and in the program of each annual Congress, but we have also launched a concrete campaign of awareness, education and training, in order to insert the MDGs in the daily operations of our members throughout the world,” he stated.

More recently, Dr. Cavalieri said, CIBJO’s supply chain integrity initiative with the Branded Trust Foundation is structured to ensure that all major UN treaties, conventions and principles covering good governance, human rights, anti-discrimination, fair labour practices, anti-corruption and the Millennium Development Goals have been integrated into the CSR program.

CIBJO, he told the UN gathering, has entered in various partnership agreements with other major organisations to support the MDGs and to ensure compliance with the UN human rights, civil rights, labour rights and gender rights. “These partnership agreements contribute to greater ethical awareness and accountability, as well as to mutual support with civil society organisations,” he stated.

During their meeting in New York, the CIBJO delegation met and were hosted by a number of senior UN and ECOSOC officials, including Navid Hanif, director of ECOSOC’s Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA), which has responsibility for CIBJO’s involvement in the UN’s development programme post 2015; Alberto Padova, Deputy Chief, NGO Branch at DESA; Qatari Ambassador Nassir Abdulaziz Al-Nasser, who heads the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations and President of the 66th General Assembly; and Muna Rihani, Chairperson  of  the UN Women for Peace Association, with whom they discussed a “Jewelry for Peace” project.

Photo Caption:  Meeting at the United Nations in New York (from left): Corrado Facco, Managing Director of Fiera di Vicenza; Hanifa Mezoui, Senior Advisor, Humanitarian Affairs and Civil Society, Office of the United Nations High Representative for the Alliance of Civilizations; Navid Hanif, director of ECOSOC’s Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA); and Gaetano Cavalieri, President of CIBJO.

Gaetano Cavalieri addresses High Level Segment of ECOSOC in New York, stresses jewellery sector’s commitment to sustainable development2017-12-07T11:56:49+00:00