On Monday China Securities Network reported that Zhong An Technology launched a joint venture to track the provenance of diamonds. The platform is called DiamsLedger and the partner, Shanghai Qingyi Technology, runs the Ediams.com B2B diamond trading platform. Zhong An Technology is a wholly owned subsidiary of Zhong An Insurance.
The Ediams CEO said that as of mid-July 760,000 diamonds were on the blockchain.
Most diamonds on the Ediams platform are certified. The certification is often from the Gemological Institute of America (GIA) or China’s state-owned National Gemstone Testing Center (NGTC). So the blockchain solution involves creating an electronic id that links to the GIA or NGTC certificates. Certificates are sometimes referred to as the fifth ‘C’ for diamonds. The gems are known for their 4C traits: carat, cut, color, and clarity.
The solution uses Zhong An’s Anlink blockchain platform with the intention of tracking diamonds throughout the supply chain. The tracking starts from the mine through to cutting, inspection, and logistics. Retail customers can verify their diamonds using a WeChat applet.
How do you connect the certificate to the diamond without relying on and trusting an expert? Zhong An says it’s developed an image recognition engine which can intelligently identify critical information in images and documents. This should help to combat fraud perpetrated with false certificates and synthetic diamonds.
Zhong An views diamonds as the first of many luxury items to be tracked in this way.
One of the other partners to launch on the platform is Guangzhou Diamond Exchange (GDE). GDE is part state-owned and is the only government approved Diamond trading platform which specializes in rough diamonds. This is likely why the number of diamonds recorded is already so large.
There are several other diamond provenance projects. De Beers announced its initiative at the start of the year. Later on, IBM announced its TrustChain gem provenance platform. And the original one was the Everledger blockchain launched in 2016 which is currently expanding beyond diamonds.