Fairtrade International and the World Jewellery Confederation (CIBJO) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding, according to which Fairtrade commits to working with CIBJO and its member organisations to improve certified Fairtrade gold supplies to the jewellery markets and members of CIBJO-associated organisations; and CIBJO commits to facilitating and encouraging its members to adopt and integrate Fairtrade gold and precious metals into their national supply chains.
The agreement was signed at the 2014 CIBJO Congress in Moscow by CIBJO President Gaetano Cavalieri and Fairtrade International’s Fairtrade Gold Coordinator, Greg Valerio.
Fairtrade International is an organisation whose goal is to raise work and living standards in developing countries through creating sustainable economic opportunities for small-scale producers and miners. In the gold and precious metals sector it works with poor and marginalised small-scale and artisanal miners to create sustainable livelihoods through developmental Fairtrade standards, auditing of the chain of custody and certifying the finished product.
In working with artisanal mining sector, Fairtrade aims to formalise small-scale mining; eradicate mercury usage, thereby enhancing the state of the environment and public health; ensure that participants comply with internationally agreed-to conflict-free protocols; and eliminate both child and forced labour.
Greg Valerio said: “The strength of working with CIBJO is that they represent the rank and file of the international jewellery industry and this, alongside their UN consultative status, gives small-scale mining communities access to the grassroots of the international jewellery trade with the added benefits that Fairtrade certification can bring, and it’s a pleasure and a privilege being associated with them.”
As part of the agreement, CIBJO and Fairtrade will work together to provide measurable developmental impacts for small-scale and artisanal mining communities, and develop educational programmes for CIBJO members and the greater jewellery industry, aimed at informing them about Fairtrade precious minerals and certification and the contribution they are able to make in developing countries and regions.