Final Communiqué Windhoek Meeting
KIMBERLEY PROCESS MEETING AND TECHNICAL WORKSHOP WINDHOEK, NAMIBIA, 13 – 16 FEBRUARY 2001
The first meeting to be convened under the “expanded” Kimberley Process mandated by the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) Resolution 55/56 of 1 December, 2000 was held in Windhoek, Namibia from 13 – 16 February 2001. The meeting was held in two parts – an Officials session on 13 February followed by a Technical Workshop from 14 – 16 February. In all, 26 governments, the World Diamond Council and representatives from SADC, the European Commission as well as civil society participated in the Technical Workshop.
The Technical Workshop, which was officially opened by the Honorable, Mr J. Nyamu, Minister of Mines and Energy of Namibia, reviewed and discussed presentations from Angola and Sierra Leone on their respective certification systems; from Belgium on its import procedures; and from Russia and Israel on their national legislative frameworks. The Technical Workshop also considered a presentation by the Belgian Diamond High Council regarding possible minimum acceptable standards for certification.
The participants welcomed the UNGA Resolution as a significant step in efforts to break the link between conflict diamonds and armed conflict. In particular, participants recognized the need expressed in the Resolution to give urgent and careful consideration to devising effective and pragmatic measures to address the problem of conflict diamonds, including the creation and implementation of a simple and workable international certification scheme for rough diamonds.
At their session on 13 February, officials considered the UNGA Resolution’s call for the development of detailed proposals for the envisaged international certification scheme for rough diamonds in close collaboration with the diamond industry and taking into account the views of the relevant elements of civil society. In order to move quickly towards the development of such proposals, officials outlined subsequent steps in the overall process. This “roadmap”, which was discussed with industry and civil society representatives during the subsequent Technical Workshop, includes a series of focused, expert meetings to develop various aspects of the envisaged international certification scheme for rough diamonds. An indicative schedule of meetings is attached as Annexure A. Every possible effort will be made to accelerate the process.
In order to facilitate and accelerate the expanded Kimberley Process, the meeting also agreed to establish a Task Force. This Task Force, which comprises diamond producing, exporting and manufacturing countries, SADC, the World Diamond Council and the European Union, with civil society as observers, will assist South Africa as the Chair of the Kimberley Process in tracking overall progress, proposing draft agendas for meetings and coordinating the preparation of detailed working papers for each meeting. The mandate, composition and initial terms of reference for the Task Force are attached as Annexure B. The Task Force will work in close cooperation with civil society.
The next meeting of the Kimberley Process will be held in Belgium in April 2001. It will concentrate on a detailed analysis of existing systems of export and import controls for rough diamonds and an assessment of current practice and experience of existing national certification schemes for rough diamonds in Angola and Sierra Leone, with a view to identifying minimum acceptable standards for the envisaged international certification scheme. Subsequent meetings will develop detailed proposals for the international certification scheme itself, based on the agreed minimum acceptable standards, and for macro statistics on rough diamonds. A report will be presented to the 56th Session of the UNGA.
KIMBERLEY PROCESS “ROADMAP”
In order to develop the detailed proposals for an international certification scheme for rough diamonds called for in UNGA Resolution 55/56 of December 1, 2000, Kimberley Process participants have agreed on a schedule of focused, expert meetings. The indicative schedule for these meetings and the topics to be discussed at each meeting, is produced below. Every effort will be made to accelerate this schedule.
April 2001 : Belgium
Analysis of import/export controls with a view to identification of elements of minimum acceptable standards for the international certification scheme for rough diamonds.
June 2001 : Russian Federation
Definition of proposals for minimum acceptable standards.
September 2001 : United Kingdom
Develop detailed proposals for the international certification scheme for rough diamonds based on the agreed minimum acceptable standards.
October 2001 : Angola (to be confirmed by Angola)
Finalize detailed proposals for the international certification scheme. Consolidate input for report back to the UNGA.
November 2001 : Botswana
Possible Ministerial Meeting.
KIMBERLEY PROCESS TASK FORCE
To assist the Chair of the Process in the development of detailed proposals for the international certification scheme for rough diamonds envisaged in United Nations General Assembly Resolution 55/56 of 1 December 2000.
Under the general guidance of the Chair, the Task Force will include representatives of some or all of the following governments : Angola, Australia, Belgium, Botswana, Canada, China, Israel, Namibia, Russia, Sierra Leone, South Africa, Switzerland, the United Kingdom and the United States, officials of the SADC and the European Union, and the World Diamond Council. At the discretion of the Chair, others may subsequently be added to the Task Force. The Task Force will work in close consultation with civil society.
TERMS OF REFERENCE
To facilitate and accelerate the Kimberley Process, the Task Force will assist the Chair in tracking overall process, preparing draft agendas for meetings and coordinating the preparation of detailed working papers for each meeting.
With respect to the next meeting, and taking into account the statement of the Ministerial Conference held in Pretoria on 21 September 2000, as well as the report of the Working Group on Diamonds presented at that time, the Task Force is charged with preparing a working paper to serve as a basis for discussion. In preparing this working paper, which will be distributed to Kimberley Process participants at least three weeks before the meeting, the Task Force will :
- Collect, collate and analyze existing systems of export and import control for rough diamonds including legislative regimes and others.
- Analyse current practice and experience of national certification schemes for rough diamonds from Angola and Sierra Leone.
- Identify elements to be incorporated into a set of minimum acceptable standards for the envisaged international certification scheme for rough diamonds.
- Make recommendations with respect to subsequent steps in the development of the international certification scheme.
The Task Force will also draft detailed terms of reference for working papers for subsequent meetings as directed by the Chair and by the Process as a whole.