Released 3rd April 2013

The European Commission has launched a consultation on conflict minerals which will go through until June this year.

The consultation will be a discussion surrounding the sensitive and controversial topic of responsibly sourcing minerals which originate from conflict stricken areas of the world.

The Commission hopes to gain an understanding of existing legislation such as that implemented this January in the US (Dodd Frank Act), and to ascertain how to learn from such initiatives to potentially construct regulations which will be applicable to European businesses and supply chains.

The most controversial part of the discussion will be whether any ruling made would be voluntary or mandatory for businesses based in the EU.

Canada has also implemented a Dodd Frank style bill (Bill C-486) which is particularly focussed on conflict minerals sourced from the Great Lakes Region on the African continent.

The EU consultation will seek the opinions of any interested parties from businesses to NGOs on how best to implement the responsible sourcing of minerals from war and post-war zones, in particular those prone to political instability and civil unrest.

Supply chain transparency will play an integral part of any conclusion the Commission reaches.

April 3rd, 2013

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