Program confirms compliant tin smelter and conflict-free sourcing from the Democratic Republic of Congo
WASHINGTON, D.C., May 29 2012 – The Global e-Sustainability Initiative (GeSI) and Electronic Industry Citizenship Coalition® (EICC®) are pleased to announce two milestones in the progress of the Conflict Free Smelter (CFS) Program: the first tin smelter has been found compliant with the CFS protocol, and the first tantalum smelter processing materials from the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) also has been found compliant. With these achievements, the CFS Program continues to demonstrate its leadership to enable responsible sourcing across multiple metals and global sourcing regions.
In partnership with the tin association ITRI, GeSI and the EICC developed the CFS Program tin protocol to recognize the unique characteristics of the tin industry in processing raw cassiterite, recyclables, and the many tin derivatives (e.g., tin slags) into tin. With the successful completion of the CFS Program by the tin smelter, GeSI and the EICC plan to integrate the lessons learned by the tin smelter into the Program to benefit other tin smelters that are underway with the CFS process.
The first tantalum smelter processing validated, conflict-free material from the DRC fulfills a key aim of the CFS Program: enable conflict-free sourcing from the DRC. Through the Solutions for Hope program, the tantalum smelter, its customer that produces tantalum capacitors, and several end use companies (all currently are members of GeSI or the EICC) have developed a supply chain that is engaged in responsible sourcing from the DRC. This achievement highlights a path for other smelters and customers to either start or expand sourcing from the region.
According to the CFS Program, responsible sourcing from the DRC and the African Great Lakes region entails meeting the requirements of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development Due Diligence Guidance for Responsible Supply Chain Management for Conflict-Affected and High Risk Areas and being found compliant with the CFS Program protocol. The first compliant tantalum smelter is also using the iTSCi Program for supply chain due diligence and traceability. Together these mechanisms allow for mineral sourcing from the DRC.
Additional smelters and refiners processing tantalum, tin, tungsten, and gold are scheduled to be audited using the CFS Program protocols throughout 2012. Information related to the status of the audits including the names of compliant smelters is located at www.conflictgreesmelter.org. The site is updated as new Program information becomes available.