Conflict-Free Sourcing Initiative Helps Companies Meet New EU Obligations Approved Today
ALEXANDRIA, Va., March 16, 2017 – The Conflict-Free Sourcing Initiative (CFSI), a coalition of leading companies dedicated to improving the security and human rights conditions in their raw materials supply chains, welcomes the European Union (EU) regulation on supply chain due diligence obligations for EU importers of tin, tantalum, tungsten and gold (3TG). The new regulation was approved today by the European Parliament and will next go before the European Council.
The EU regulation will require importers of 3TG to undertake due diligence in line with the OECD Due Diligence Guidance for Responsible Supply Chains of Minerals from Conflict-Affected and High-Risk Areas (OECD Guidance). The regulation will apply directly to between 600 and 1,000 EU importers and will indirectly affect approximately 500 3TG smelters and refiners globally. The new regulation will take effect on Jan. 1, 2021.
Over the past several years the CFSI has been working with representatives from the European Commission, Council and Parliament to help companies understand the requirements and accompanying measures of the new law, as well as how current due diligence support systems can be leveraged to support compliance under the EU regulation.
To facilitate the acceptance and application of the CFSI’s Conflict-Free Smelter Program (CFSP) in the EU framework, the CFSI is currently undergoing a pilot assessment for OECD alignment that is designed to inform a Delegated Act of the EU regulation. The OECD-led Alignment Assessment assesses the alignment of industry programs’ standards, systems, and implementation efforts with the OECD Guidance. The OECD Alignment Assessment pilot is anticipated to be completed in 2017.
“The utilization of collaborative industry platforms in the EU framework will be a critical factor in harmonizing systems, maintaining company engagement, and managing costs to supply chain actors as the EU requirements go into effect,” said CFSI Program Director Leah Butler. “Responsible sourcing requires the efforts of all stakeholders: governments, companies, industry associations, non-governmental entities and civil society. These actors should continue their efforts to contribute toward security and stability in conflict-affected and high-risk areas globally.”
On March 23 in Brussels, the CFSI will be co-hosting a workshop with the European Partnership on Responsible Minerals (EPRM) to discuss resources, tools and multi-industry and multi-sector approaches to facilitate company due diligence. The EPRM is a European-based multi-stakeholder partnership established to improve social and economic conditions for mining communities in Conflict-Affected and High-Risk Areas.
The CFSI is a multi-industry initiative with over 350 member companies, including associations and service providers. Our members contribute to the development and international uptake of a range of tools and resources including the Conflict-Free Smelter Program, the Conflict Minerals Reporting Template, Reasonable Country of Origin Inquiry data, and guidance documents on responsible sourcing of tin, tantalum, tungsten and gold (3TG). The CFSI runs regular workshops on responsible sourcing issues and contributes to policy development with civil society organizations and governments. For more information, visit conflictfreesourcing.org.
Jarrett Bens, Director of Communications
Responsible Business Alliance
Phone: +1 571.858.5721