The report focuses on a three-part process to establish comprehensive standards for diamonds through the International Organisation for Standardisation.
With fewer than five weeks to go to the opening of the 2021 CIBJO Congress on November 1, 2021, the fourth of this year’s CIBJO commissions’ Special Reports has been released. Prepared by the CIBJO Diamond Commission, headed by Udi Sheintal, the report focuses on a three-part process to establish comprehensive standards for diamonds through the International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO). This is a project in which CIBJO has been closely involved.
As Mr. Sheintal recalls in the report, the first breakthrough in the process occurred in 2015, when ISO published International Standard 18323, which specified a set of permitted descriptors for the diamond industry that are meant to be unequivocally understood by consumers. It clarified that that “the denomination ‘diamond’ without further specification always implies ‘natural diamond.’”
The second milestone was registered in September 2020, when ISO published International Standard 24016, specifying the terminology, classification and the methods to be used for the grading and description of single unmounted polished diamonds over 0.25 carats in weight. The third part of the process is currently underway, and once complete will result in International Standard 6893. It will detail methods and terminology for the quality control of diamonds of 0.25 carats and less.
The convener of the CEN 410 Working Group, which prepared the European standard that ISO adopted unchanged to create EN ISO 18323 in 2015 was Harry Levy, Vice President of the CIBJO Diamond Commission, to whom there is special tribute in the report. The convener of TC174 Working Group 2 both for International Standard 18323 and now for the prospective International Standard 6893 is Jean-Pierre Chalain, the Diamond Commission’s other Vice President.
“When International Standard 6893 is eventually published by ISO, a complete set of standards for the diamond industry will have been achieved, a truly historic achievement,” Mr. Sheintal writes in the report. “But since standards are enforced at the country level, the most desirable consequence would be that these international standards would be used to create equivalent national standards.”
CIBJO congresses serve as the official gathering place for the World Jewellery Confederation’s global membership, and 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.