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RMI Deploys New Approaches for Due Diligence

Responsible Minerals Initiative Expands Scope and Tools for Ethical Sourcing Worldwide

Published 03-13-18

Submitted by Responsible Business Alliance

The Responsible Minerals Initiative (RMI), formerly the Conflict-Free Sourcing Initiative (CFSI), a coalition of leading companies dedicated to improving the security and human rights conditions in their minerals supply chains, today announced new tools to enable responsible sourcing from conflict-affected and high-risk areas.

In late 2017, the RMI released revised standards for tin, tungsten, tantalum and gold (3TG), which replace earlier audit protocols and go into effect on June 1, 2018. The revised standards include a global approach to due diligence, beyond the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and nine adjoining countries, and are in closer alignment with internationally recognized frameworks, including the OECD Due Diligence Guidance for Responsible Supply Chains of Minerals from Conflict-Affected and High-Risk Areas (OECD Guidance) and ISO 19011:2011 Guidelines for auditing management systems. The revised standards also align public reporting requirements for audited companies with the OECD Guidance. While the revised RMI standards go into effect in June, companies can voluntarily undergo audits using the new standards now.

Beyond work on 3TG, the RMI is actively supporting companies’ efforts to identify and prioritize the salient social, environmental and governance impacts of extraction and processing of raw materials in international supply chains. To this end, the RMI has launched new tools and resources that help companies exercise due diligence, including the Risk Readiness Assessment Platform. The RRA is a self-assessment tool for companies along the value chain to assess and communicate their risk management practices across 31 issue areas. More than 60 downstream and 160 upstream companies are active on the RRA platform to date, completing and sharing over 200 assessments across 3TG and cobalt supply chains. Over the next month, in coordination with DRIVE Sustainability, RMI will also publish material risk profiles for 17 raw materials commonly used in automotive and electronic products as well as a risk matrix covering 45 raw materials.

On March 1, RMI launched a six-month pilot of the Cobalt Reporting Template (CRT). The Cobalt Reporting Template serves to identify cobalt refiners in companies’ supply chains and collect due diligence information. The pilot version of the CRT, as well as the list of cobalt refiners, will be made available until Aug. 31, 2018. After the pilot phase, refinements and continuation of the tool will be assessed.

“Expectations on companies to demonstrate due diligence and responsible sourcing are increasing worldwide,” said Leah Butler, Vice President, Responsible Business Alliance (RBA). “These new tools from the RMI help create conditions for companies with global supply chains to conduct due diligence and meet those growing demands.”   

About RMI

The Responsible Minerals Initiative (RMI) is a multi-industry initiative with over 360 member companies, including associations and service providers. Our members contribute to the development and international uptake of a range of tools and resources, including independent third-party audit programs for smelters, the Conflict Minerals Reporting Template, Reasonable Country of Origin Inquiry data, and guidance documents on responsible sourcing of tin, tantalum, tungsten and gold (3TG) and cobalt. The RMI runs regular workshops on responsible sourcing issues and contributes to policy development with civil society organizations and governments. For more information, visit responsiblemineralsinitiative.org.

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Responsible Business Alliance

Responsible Business Alliance

The Responsible Business Alliance is the world’s largest industry coalition dedicated to corporate social responsibility in global supply chains.

About the RBA

The Responsible Business Alliance (RBA) is a nonprofit coalition of leading companies dedicated to improving social, environmental and ethical conditions in their global supply chains. The RBA has a Code of Conduct and a range of programs, training and assessment tools to support continual improvement. The RBA and its Responsible Minerals, Labor and Factory Initiatives have more than 380 members with combined annual revenues of greater than $7.7 trillion, directly employing over 21.5 million people, with products manufactured in more than 120 countries.

Vision & Mission

Vision: A global electronics industry that creates sustainable value for workers, the environment and business.

Mission: Members, suppliers and stakeholders collaborate to improve working and environmental conditions through leading standards and practices.

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