On the 26th of February, the US Federal Reserve signed a bill prohibiting the import of key raw materials from African and selected other countries. This bill comes at a time when the US is trying to force end-users such as OEMs, telecommunication manufacturers and technology firms to take responsibility for the entire supply chains, ensuring that at each stage, the product has been produced or mined with integrity and is conflict-free. Specifically, integrity points to the fact that no forced labour or child labour was used, the material was mined in an environmentally responsible way and the materials were exported, devoid of any bribery or corruption.
The bill is an amendment to legislation that has been in force for years which prohibits US companies from importing goods that utilise child labour. This particular piece of legislation had a provision that as long as the produce did not land up on US shores, then US companies could in fact benefit from these practices. The amendment that was signed not only removed this provision, but forbids the imports of selected commodities from specific jurisdictions.
The list of goods per country that are forbidden to be imported in the US include:
|Cobalt ore (Heterogenite)||Democratic Republic of Congo|
|Copper||Democratic Republic of Congo|
|Democratic Republic of Congo|
|Tantalum ore||Democratic Republic of Congo|
|Wolframite (Tungsten ore)||Democratic Republic of Congo|
Core Consultants has recognised the importance of a conflict-free supply chain as well as the responsibility placed on end-users. As such we have been assisting key end users in understanding their supply chains, identifying potential risk areas and working towards a common solution so as to ensure that end users do not get caught without material.