(Press Release) MILAN, ITALY - The jewelry industry's challenge in coming years will be to position itself as a model of sustainable development, thus appealing to a new generation of consumers, said CIBJO President Gaetano Cavalieri, speaking at the 16th Paris Gemmological Rendez-Vous on June 12. The event was hosted by the Association Française de Gemmologie and chaired by its president, Didier Giard.

One of the reasons that CIBJO has been so firm in its support of the Paris Gemmological Rendez Vous is the commitment that the event has shown in promoting issues related to sustainability and corporate social responsibility, and various initiatives such as the World Day of the Sustainable Management of Gems Mines and Pearl Farms, Cavalieri said.

"Despite the inter-governmental controversies of the past two weeks, the City of Paris should be proud of its now historic association with the principles of sustainability, not only in terms of the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, but also in the effort to create a better world for all of our planet's citizens, and especially those living in countries and regions that are less developed than we are in the West," the CIBJO president said in his address to the gathering. "I would note that CIBJO strongly supports a vigorous carbon reduction drive in the jewelry and gemstone sector, and indeed for four years now we have been completely carbon neutral.

"Furthermore, we are operating a program to promote carbon neutrality throughout our industry, and we will be happy to work together with any of you looking to make a similar move.

"Before coming here today I skimmed through the day's agenda, and looked at the various countries that will be featured during the various presentations at this gathering. They include Fiji, Afghanistan, Mozambique, Madagascar, Ethiopia and Botswana. In terms of the UN Human Development Index, only one - Fiji - is listed in the top 50 percent of the 188 countries listed, holding the 91st spot. Botswana, which is located at 108, is described as a medium development country. But the remaining four are all considered low human development countries, with Madagascar in 158th place, Afghanistan in 169th place, Ethiopia in 174th place and Mozambique in 181st place. It is clear that the gemstone and jewelry has ability to play an absolutely critical role in the economic and social development of these countries.

"They say that in the 21st century gemstone and jewelry market, millennial consumers want the products they buy to have social as well as monetary value. We are in a position to provide them with just that."

CIBJO is the international jewelry confederation of national trade organizations.INSTORE cavalieri

CIBJO President Gaetano Cavalieri on the podium during the Paris Gemmological Rendez-Vous on June 12.

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