Parcelpaper - 't Partijbriefke NO.7

Our association is still growing and we regularly have new members. We took new initiatives such as contacts with foreign professional organisations. For this reason we created contact commissions for economical, scientific and cultural exchange. Contacts to help you with the expansion of your business to new markets were initiated...

Dear members, dear friends,
Our association is still growing and we regularly have new members. We took new initiatives such as contacts with foreign professional organisations. For this reason we created contact commissions for economical, scientific and cultural exchange. Contacts to help you with the expansion of your business to new markets were initiated.
For this reason we already have good relations with the “Syndicat Saint Eloi” of France after the successful conference of Place Vendôme last June. But your board of directors is tireless. Contacts are made with “National Arts and Crafts” the professional trade organisation of jewels and precious stones of China. We will inform you later on. Another association is ABGM (Associaçào Brasiliera de Gemologia e Mineralogia) of Sao Paulo. We even consider a joint venture with them to help you with your trade in South America. Other contacts are even made with the Moroccan jewellers association. The target is to offer an international network of potential clientele to our members.  We also plan to invite these associations to Antwerp, to show them our diamond centre but also to build commercial relationship with our members.
5th C
Our project is now really starting and supported by the “Syndicat Saint Eloi” of France, National Arts and Crafts of China, the “Vereniging van Goud en Zilversmeden” of Holland and the High Council of Jewellery and Watches of Belgium. The first certifications will be delivered soon. On the list we have companies such as Jayam, Mac Precious Stones, Just Diamond, International Diamond Center and the jewellers Slaets and Tensen in Antwerp.
The Dutch governmental organisation “Milieukeur” (environment control) invited us already twice. The first time in the watch museum in Schoonhoven and later at their headquarters in The Hague. This can be qualified as collaboration between the jewellery sector and NGO’s under governmental supervision. The most important problem is the artisanal mining of gold where poison is used such as cyanide and mercury. Other common problems are child labour, infiltration of doubtful traders, treated and synthetic stones.
New initiative
The diamond cutting schools have very small budgets and they have no didactic material. On the other hand many diamond offices have old compu-ters out of work because they bought new ones with higher performance. The old ones are really welcome in the schools. For this reason we have a technician that can come to your office for cleaning up all database of your computer before leaving your place. A wonderful gift for the school and your office is cleaned of old tools. Information: 0475.24.45.95.
Since ten years Dubai and Abu Dhabi are profiled more and more as trade centres for diamonds and precious stones. Their trade fairs are now as important as international diamond and jewellery fairs. Dubai was already well known as an important gold market with the “ Gold Souk” more specialised for the consumer of the Middle East. Today the Emirates became also an important centre for diamonds, precious stones and jewellery wholesalers. Due to a climate of trust, political stability and surely a soft fiscality Dubai will become the diamond centre of the 21st century. Always the same story! Amsterdam disappeared during the two world wars due to a high fiscal pressure from the Dutch authorities and to strong workers unions a specialized banking system existed in Antwerp. Dubai and Abu Dhabi are fiscal paradises, there are no special union pressures and the bank organisation is the same or even better than in Antwerp. Dubai is a fully secured city with a very low level of criminality, robbery and hold-ups. Carjackings are very rare. An ultra modern infrastructure, an international airport and last but not least it is a tourist paradise. But also Bahrain is looking for a place as a diamond and jewellery centre. Bahrain organizes since many years an international trade fair for diamond, precious stones and jewellery more specifically for the Saudi market.
HRD certificate
The commitee is working on a new look of the certificate. Synthetic stones will not receive a certificate but treated stones with HTHP will receive a certificate with the mention “HPHT processed”. What does HPHT means for the consumer? We can exped already a few scandals and lawsuits.
It is very difficult to know when the first diamonds where cut and sold in Antwerp but it was surely after the decline of Bruges in the 15th century. The stran-ding of the Zwin blocked the entrance of the ships and a crisis in the textile factories was the cause of the move to Antwerp. Antwerp, city on the stream with a better road connection to the north, the south and the centre of Europe. Lodewijck van Berquem (the man who invented diamond cutting) come with his fellowship also to Antwerp. The foundation of the Diamond and Ruby cutter Guild was done in October 1582 with the object “ to the benefit of traders and the noble buyers and to the glory of the city of Antwerp”. It was created under Calvinist regime, a reason used by the Spanish during the inquisition to dismantle the Guild. 400 years later on the same day and on the same month with the same number of members our Federation was created. Twenty years later the Federation of Diamond Bourses (under pressure of a few persons), decided that our name was confusing (?).  Our association is working hard on a constructive way and never plays with politics or lobbying. For this reason we propose to the general assembly a “back to the roots”. With unanimity the name of “The Guild of Diamonds and Precious Stones, Antwerp 1582” was adopted. Our target is the same as 400 years ago, to put all our energy in the support of our members to expand their business on the international scale, promotion of Antwerp as World Diamond and Precious Centre and to look for new initiatives is this field.
In a dramatic show of support, Canada’s members of parliament voted at the end of last week
to abolish once and for all the unjust 10% “Luxury Tax”. Previous it was to be phased out over 5 years at a 2% reduction/year. Canada’s Senate will rubber stamp this vote into law, probably by September, and then effective imme-diately,  NO MORE 10% TAX.  Exciting news for all of us.
The Guild has at its disposal files about Rapaport prices and exchange rates. We have heard that some persons are looking for prices of Rap and exchange rates of the past years. Our members can have this free of charge (25€ for non members). We have at your disposal files from the beginning of the 90’s.
We received a proposal from the president of the Morocco jewellers association to organise our 9th EPSC in there country. The proposal is to organize an international conference on Friday after a B2B between the jewellers manufacturers and retailers with our members. From 15 till 22 January 2006. We keep you in touch.


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