Complementary Programs

The CFSI regularly collaborates with other programs that address conflict minerals issues from an industry perspective. Some key complementary programs to the CFSI include:

Better Sourcing Program

The Better Sourcing Program has worked in collaboration with operators across the minerals supply chain to offer a scalable solution for conflict-free assurance and validation of upstream procurement, to support compliance of the receiving smelter with the CFSI’s Conflict-Free Smelter Program. It is designed primarily to encourage a flexible, comprehensive and transparent approach to conflict-free and responsible mineral sourcing, including from artisanal and small-scale mine sites.

Better Sourcing works with exporters not only in countries covered by Section 1502 of the United States’ Dodd Frank Act, but also exporters and importers likely to fall under the global scope of the EU Regulation on conflict minerals, to obtain or regain access to international conflict-free markets by demonstrating an improvement of supply chain conditions.

Better Sourcing compliance with the Conflict-Free Smelter Program is based on strict, third-party audited application of principles from the OECD Due Diligence Guidance. It relies on the implementation of robust management systems (policies, procedures, traceability, transparency, monitoring, consultation, reporting) from mine to smelter, as well as ongoing risk evaluation and mitigation accounting for the specific circumstances of each supply chain, while minimizing costs to operators. To learn more about Better Sourcing, please write to contact@bsp-assurance.com.

The European Partnership for Responsible Minerals (EPRM)

The European Partnership for Responsible Minerals (EPRM) is a public-private partnership aiming to stimulate the demand for and supply of responsibly-sourced minerals from conflict-affected and high risk areas. On the one hand, the EPRM serves as a knowledge platform where organisations can share knowledge on due diligence, and on the other hand it supports activities to improve the conditions in mining areas in conflict-affected and high risk areas. Initially, the EPRM focuses on the four conflict minerals (tin, tantalum, tungsten and gold, 3TG). It has a global scope. For additional inquiries, please write to janpieter.barendse@minbuza.nl.

iTSCi

The iTSCi Programme is a joint industry mechanism designed to address ‘conflict mineral’ concerns in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Rwanda and other Great Lakes Region countries. The Programme establishes traceability in the upstream mineral chain for 3T minerals by working with local Governments and their field agents, and assists companies to establish due diligence through independent monitoring on the ground and regular audits. The Programme supports the practical implementation of the OECD’s Due Diligence Guidance for Responsible Supply Chains of Minerals from Conflict-Affected and High-Risk Areas as well as the UN Security Council Resolution 1952 (2010) due diligence recommendations. Members are expected to recognise all aspects of these guidelines and cooperate with monitoring, evaluation and audits as required, as well as working on their own company policies and contracts to influence the supply chain in a positive way. Through the implementation of the internationally recognised OECD Guidance, the Programme aims to aid compliance with the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Rule interpreting the US Dodd Frank law, section 1502 on conflict minerals.  The Programme complements other initiatives, including the Conflict–Free Smelter audit programme (CFS), the ICGLR’s Regional Certification Initiative, and BGR’s Certified Trading Chains Initiative (CTC). For additional inquiries, please write to itsci@itri.co.uk.

Mineral Certification at the BGR

BGR, the Federal Institute for Geosciences and Natural Resources, as the central geoscientific authority for the German Government, has been engaged in mineral certification, due diligence and ASM formalization efforts in the Great Lakes Region region of Arfica and internationally through a number of technical cooperation projects implemented since 2006. In response to international calls to constrain the origin of “conflict minerals”, BGR scientists started developing the Analytical Fingerprint (AFP) method to evaluate the mineralogical and geochemical characteristics of individual 3T ore deposits and their differentiating features. BGR developed and refined the mineral certification concept as well as demonstrated its feasibility on a voluntary base through the G8 pilot project on Certified Trading Chains (CTC), implemented in Rwanda from 2008-2011 in cooperation with government and private sector partners. In 2009, a bilateral cooperation program on “Strengthening the transparency and control of the natural resource sector” was initiated between the DR Congo and Germany. The program is currently in its second phase and includes introducing and adapting the CTC concept to the DRC context together with Congolese partner institutions. In 2011, BGR joined the German cooperation program “Support to the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region (ICGLR)”. The multi-phase program currently runs until the end of 2016. The BGR module “Support to regional mineral certification” has two components, namely (1) introducing and transferring AFP technology and management capacity into the Great Lakes Region (including establishing the necessary analytical facilities), and (2) supporting ASM formalization and mineral certification in Rwanda and Burundi.

Pact

The Mines to Markets initiative is focused on responsible sourcing, including further reinforcing the systems that enable companies to source conflict-free minerals, working with leading corporations to reduce child labor in mining in DRC, and improving health and safety in the countries where Pact works. Pact implements the iTSCi due diligence & traceability system and develops/implements social programs to address issues such as occupational safety and health, formalization of the artisanal mining sector, and rights and opportunities for women in mining.  Details of all these activities and contributions can be found here.

Watch Pact's video "Unconflicted" here

Public-Private Alliance for Responsible Minerals Trade (PPA)

The Public-Private Alliance for Responsible Minerals Trade (PPA) is a multi-sector and multi-stakeholder initiative to support supply chain solutions to conflict minerals challenges in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and the Great Lakes Region (GLR) of Central Africa. The PPA provides funding and coordination support to organizations working within the region to develop verifiable conflict-free supply chains; align chain-of-custody programs and practices; encourage responsible sourcing from the region; promote transparency; and bolster in-region civil society and governmental capacity.

Responsible Raw Materials Initiative (RRMI)

Mining is an intensive process involving potential social and environmental risks that, if not properly managed, can cause lasting negative impacts. A growing body of research suggests that these risks may be significant and associated with a variety of metals and minerals that extend beyond tin, tungsten, tantalum and gold. The Responsible Raw Materials Initiative (RRMI) is a working group co-sponsored by the Electronic Industry Citizenship Coalition (EICC) and the Conflict-Free Sourcing Initiative (CFSI) to address broader social and environmental impacts from mineral extraction. The RRMI utilizes multi-industry partnerships with companies and stakeholders, and is guided by standards such as the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises and the United Nations (UN) Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights. To learn more about the RRMI, please visit the RRMI webpage.

Solutions for Hope

The Solutions for Hope platform supports companies, civil society organizations, and governments working together to responsibly source minerals from regions where due diligence and market access are limited by opaque supply chains and where partners are seeking to support local development. The SfH platform and pilots enable collaborative problem-solving and risk mitigation, testing of due diligence approaches, and recognition for participation. The platform fosters dialogue and shared learning across minerals and geographies, expediting solutions by sharing approaches and guidance on challenges that arise in pilots and moving to scale. Since its start, SfH has successfully demonstrated that 1) it is feasible for downstream companies to establish supply chains originating with conflict-free mines in regions impacted by conflict; 2) these supply chains can be independently validated as conflict-free, thus mitigating risks of in-region sourcing; and 3) leaders from civil society support responsible sourcing from regions experiencing conflict and recognizes companies participating in SfH, as a complement to regulatory initiatives focused on transparency.

Visit our Artisanal and Small-Scale Mining (ASM) Gold Projects page for information on how to support gold-specific initiatives.