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11 Feb 2016

Metalor (Suisse)

Responsible Industrial Gold Mining in Burkina Faso and Respect of Human Rights/ The Role of Switzerland & Metalor

The Swiss NGO Action de Caréme (or Fastenopfer in German) is about publishing a report on the above subject and in particular about the role of Metalor in sourcing gold mineral from its customer Iamgold, that runs the Essakane mine in Burkina Faso. In this respect we want to make the point that:

  • the report provides a completely wrong picture of the situation in particular in Essakane that Metalor firmly rejects.
  • the report disregards the existing reality of the country and simply tend to automatically associate human rights violations to industrial mining activity. This is particularly NOT the case regarding the situation of Iamgold and the Essakane mine.
  • Metalor has worked and will continue to work in Burkina Faso in compliance with the law, the standards of recognized international organizations and its internal policies, including but not limited to the full respect of human rights. It is worth to remark that Iamgold has been consistently recognized for its outstanding community engagement initiatives, particularly at Essakane, by a number of local and Canadian organizations for its work to improve the conditions of the communities living around the mine in Essakane. Action de Caréme is disparaging both Metalor, Iamgold and the responsible mining work the latter has done in Essakane on the basis of very limited and biased field research and third party studies that have already been strongly contested in the past as unreliable. This is not acceptable in any way and Metalor reserves the right to defend its image and legitimate interest as appropriate.
  • the position of Metalor is clearly explained in the attached letter that summarizes the exchanges Metalor has had with Action de Caréme on this matter. Regrettably, Action de Caréme decided to ignore the factual information provided both by Metalor and its customer Iamgold.
  • Action de Carême is lacking transparency by knowingly disregarding documentary evidence about the positive inputs brought by the Company Iamgold in the region of Essakane.
  • Action de Carême is failing to provide the details of the researches allegedly made last summer in the region of Essakane. Metalor does not believe that a serious and true picture of the situation could be given by this NGO without any contact with the Company which operates the mine of Essakane.

Part of the following timelines

Burkina Faso: Un rapport souligne les impacts de l'exploitation de l'or sur les communautés et la responsabilité de la Suisse, les entreprises indexées répondent

“Profit over human rights? Gold mining in Burkina Faso and Switzerland’s responsibility”