Illicit Trade in Precious Metals and Gemstones
The illicit trade in precious metals and gemstones covers, among other commodities, diamonds. Although the establishment of the Kimberley Process has reduced the amount of conflict diamonds on the market, the illicit trade in diamonds continues to fund conflict and the activities of terrorist organizations. Rather than contributing to governments’ tax revenues, and economic growth and development on the African continent where the majority of diamonds are extracted, the trade in illicit diamonds is used by criminals for storing and transferring value. It is estimated that between 5% to 10% of the world’s diamonds are traded illegally. Based on 2015 industry totals, this places the size of this illicit trade in the range between US$ 5 billion and US$ 10 billion. Continued illicit trade in diamonds hurts legitimate actors’ reputation and business.
Learn how illicit trade in precious metals and gemstones impacts the achievement of the UN Sustainable Development Goals
From smuggling, counterfeiting and tax evasion, to the illegal sale or possession of goods, services, humans and wildlife, illicit trade is compromising the attainment of the UN SDGs in significant ways, crowding out legitimate economic activity, depriving governments of revenues for investment in vital public services, dislocating millions of legitimate jobs and causing irreversible damage to ecosystems and human lives.
The TRACIT report Mapping the Impact of Illicit Trade on the Sustainable Development Goals investigates illicit trade in 12 key sectors that participate significantly in international trade and are most vulnerable to illicit trade. For each sector, the negative impacts of illicit trade are mapped against the 17 UN SDGs. The full report is available here.
Read the chapter: SDGs and illicit trade in precious metals and gemstones