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Wednesday, 29 November 2017

Increasingly transparent diamonds

Increasingly transparent diamonds

The jewellery sector has been battling for years to affirm the jeweller's all-round professionalism and skills, which include the field of precious stones and diamonds, and the battle has been particularly fierce in asking for clarity and transparency in information on the purchase costs, prices, sales methods and presumed yields of precious stones.

In fact, unclear and tendentious communication has led to the conviction that diamonds could be considered as an investment, creating considerable damage, generating customer perplexity and uncertainty and even causing a slow-down in the inclination to buy. Attention is constantly focused on the multi-faceted theme of diamonds sold for investment by the banks, In 2016, the REPORT programme spotlighted a market that would seem to have purely speculative purposes and little communication transparency. It dealt with the problems linked to the ways in which precious materials are traded and their prices. By broadcasting this programme, REPORT brought this enormously problematic topic to the public's attention, activating an authentic transparency operation. Now, a year further on, something has changed and hopefully will continue to change quickly: more attention and more information. Consob is keeping a watchful eye on diamond companies and banks.

The latter, in turn, have shown greater caution in offering diamonds as an investment while, in the meantime, jewellers have been repeatedly asked to provide further information on how many diamonds they buy in the bank. From Federpreziosi Confcommercio's studies over the last two years, it would seem that, although purchasing behaviours and styles have changed profoundly, the jewellery store is still the most popular place for buying precious items, both gems and jewellery.

Now more than ever, transparency and clarity are on the agenda in all sectors and all fields and it is exactly a category like jewellery, which often falls under a bad light, that must support initiatives aimed at greater transparency to enhance professionalism. For years now, practically all traders, associations and organizations in the jewellery industry, at all levels and throughout Italy, have been campaigning for the introduction of regulations on gemmological materials in order to protect the consumer. In this way, not only would people be able to have clear and correct information on the characteristics of the items they are buying, traders (importers, wholesalers, manufacturers and retailers) would also be made more responsible in terms of the denomination and quality of the items they are offering. And, last but not least, it would also act as a deterrent against unfair competition.

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