Spotlight Conflict Minerals

Blood on your mobile phone? Capturing the gains for artisanal miners, poor workers and women

By Dr. Dev Nathan (Institute for Human Development)

Capturing the Gains research into the global production of mobile phones traces the connections between armed factions, poverty and violence in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and mobile phone users worldwide. The critical link is coltan, or columbite tantalite. It is the raw material for tantalum, an essential mineral in the manufacture of mobile phones, computers and other electronic equipment.  more[...]  login_required


Rethinking Resource Conflict

By Dr John-Andrew McNeish (CMI)

Resource conflict is one of several destabilizing phenomena commonly cited as defining many of the extractive economies of the global south. In the post-Cold War in which stability has become a key concern of international governance and investment it has also been an issue that has encouraged a proliferation of scholarly and policy interest. In these studies and policy discussions a large number of terms are now in use in an attempt to account for the complicated state of affairs faced by resource-rich countries in the global south: intractable conflicts, new wars, resource wars, complex political emergencies, conflict trap, resource securitization, petro-violence, blood diamonds.  more[...]


Taking Conflicts Out of Consumer Gadgets

By Sasha Lezhnev (Enough Project)

Leading electronics companies are making progress in eliminating conflict minerals from their supply chains, but still cannot label their products as being conflict free. Since Enough’s last corporate rankings report on conflict minerals in December 2010, a majority of leading consumer electronics companies have moved ahead in addressing conflict minerals in their supply chains—spurred by the conflict minerals provision in the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act and growing consumer activism, particularly on college campuses. Most firms have improved their scores from the 2010 rankings, but some laggards still remain.  more[...]  login_required


Dangerous tales: Dominant narratives on the Congo and their unintended consequences

By Prof Séverine Autesserre (Columbia University)

Life conditions in the eastern part of the Democratic Republic of Congo have deteriorated significantly since the end of the transition to peace and democracy in late 2006. Each year, the people of the eastern provinces feel less secure than the year before. [1] There were more people internally displaced in 2010 than at the end of 2006. [2] Armed groups, including the Congolese army, relentlessly commit horrific violations of human rights. The Congo has dropped twenty places (from 167 to 187) in the Index of Human Development, officially becoming the least developed country on earth.[3] Overall, current conditions for the populations of the eastern Congo remain among the worst in Africa.  more[...]


Warlords, soldiers, and child laborers all toil over a mineral you've never even heard of. Coltan is a conflict mineral in nearly every cell phone, laptop, and electronic device. It's also tied to the deaths of over 5 million people in Congo since 1990.

Source: Vice

Conflict Minerals in US-Law

  • Dodd–Frank Section 1502 and the SEC’s final rule

    Ernst & Young

    In recent years, there has been an increasing international focus on conflict minerals emanating from mining operations in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and adjoining countries. Armed groups engaged in mining operations in this region are believed to subject workers and indigenous people to serious human rights abuses and are using proceeds from the sale of conflict minerals to finance regional conflicts.  more[...]  login_required

    The Author
  • Conflict Minerals and SEC Disclosure Regulation

    Prof. Celia Taylor, University of Denver Sturm College of Law

    Mention the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act (“Dodd-Frank” or the “Act”),[1] and most people think of legislation aimed at “fundamental reform of the financial system”[2] focused on regulation of Wall Street practices and complex financial products. But tucked within the voluminous text of the Act (which consists of 2,300 pages and stipulates the passage of 387 rules by 20 different agencies[3]) is a provision having nothing to do with these issues or anything remotely related to them. Instead the “conflict minerals” provision of the Act requires companies that are subject to the reporting requirement of the federal securities laws to disclose whether they manufacture products using so-called “conflict minerals” sourced from the Democratic Republic of Congo (“DRC”) or contiguous countries.[4]  more[...]

    The Author
    Prof. Celia Taylor, University of Denver Sturm College of Law 
  • United States: US Securities And Exchange Commission Adopts Final Conflict Minerals Disclosure Rule

    On August 22, 2012, and as mandated by the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, the US Securities and Exchange Commission adopted the final rule regarding disclosure of the use of conflict minerals that originated in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) or an adjoining country. The rule was originally proposed on December 15, 2010.  more[...]  login_required

    The Author
  • US ruling on oil, gas and mining companies will make them more accountable

    Chris Sanders, Transparency International

    On 22 August 2012, more than two years after the orignal legislation was passed, the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) voted by a 2-to-1 majority to adopt robust rules implementing section 1504 of the Dodd-Frank Act. In an effort to curb corruption, this landmark ruling will require oil, gas and mining companies listed on US Stock Exchanges to publish the payments that they make to governments.  more[...]  login_required

    The Author
    Chris Sanders, Transparency International 



U.S. Chamber of Commerce Sues SEC to Overturn Extractive Industry Transparency Rule

By Amy K. Lehr (Foley Hoag)

Earlier this month, on October 10, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and three other industry groups filed suit against the Securities and Exchange Commission in federal court in Washington, D.C. The lawsuit seeks to overturn the recently-promulgated SEC rule implementing Section 1504 of the Dodd-Frank Act, which requires disclosure of payments to governments relating to oil, gas, and mining projects.  more[...]


Progress Being Made In Eliminating Conflict From Minerals Supply Chains

By Esq. Amol Mehra (International Corporate Accountability Roundtable)

Today the Enough Project released “Taking Conflict Out of Consumer Gadgets: Company Rankings on Conflict Minerals 2012,” its second report ranking company progress toward responsible and conflict-free supply chains. The report shows that the majority of companies surveyed have made great strides in eliminating conflict minerals from their supply chains since first being evaluated in 2010.  more[...]  login_required


Conflict minerals: What you need to know about the new disclosure and reporting requirements and how Ernst & Young can help

By Ernst & Young

This Studie discusses Section 1502 of the Dodd–Frank Act requiring disclosures about "conflict minerals" emanating from select countries. Section 1502 of the Dodd–Frank Act is intended to make transparent the financial interests that support armed groups in the DRC area. By requiring companies using conflict minerals in their products to disclose the source of such minerals, the law is aimed at dissuading companies from continuing to engage in trade that supports regional conflicts.  more[...]  login_required


From Child Miner to Jewelry Store

By Enough Project

This is the first of two papers on the illegal conflict-gold trade from eastern Congo that is fueling one of the most violent conflicts in the world. This paper tracks the transnational trade from mines in eastern Congo to consumers. The second paper will map a way to resolve this problem by setting out recommendations to formalize the trade, cut down conflict-gold smuggling, and create jobs to provide living wages to Congolese miners.  more[...]  login_required


Business risks facing mining and metals 2012-2013

Mining and metals businesses face risks that are becoming more extreme and more complex, with resource nationalism, skills shortage and infrastructure as the top three, and the newcomer being sharing the benefits.  more[...]  login_required


Flammable Societies. Studies on the Socio-economics of Oil and Gas

By Edited by John-Andrew McNeish and Owen Logan

The impact of the oil and gas industry – paradoxically seen both as a blessing and a curse on socio-economic development – is a question at the heart of the comparative studies in this volume stretching from Northern Europe to the Caucasus, the Gulf of Guinea to Latin America.  more[...]





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