U.S. Buyers Beware – Green Diamonds

23/06/2015 09:24

Wholesalers at the Natural Color Diamond Association (NCDIA) seminar in NYC expected to learn whether Zimbabwe green diamonds with Kimberley Process (KP) certification are legal to trade. Instead, they learned that U.S. sanctions against the country made all diamonds from Zimbabwe off limits whether KP certified or not. In 2003, sanctions effectively stopped diamond trading between Zimbabwe, the EU and the US. Ten years later, the EU lifted the bans on Zimbabwe’s diamond mining firms, but the US kept its sanctions in place. Tom Gelb, educational director of NCDIA, said that members mainly ask about the KP process, but knowledge of the U.S. sanctions against Zimbabwe is scant; the law is vague; and nobody can prove or disprove if a diamond is from Zimbabwe. Kushal Sacheti, CEO of Galaxy USA, said, "The government knows they are from Zimbabwe but we don’t. If they end up being from Zimbabwe, there’s nothing we can do.”