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31 May 2016

Chris Yong, Triodos Bank, The Colour of Money

Triodos Bank calls for stronger commitments by lawmakers, businesses & consumers to conflict-free minerals

"Between Hammer and Anvil," May 2016

…Gold, tungsten, coltan and tin are raw materials which are found in our most common electronic devices…[T]he cash-flow from conflict minerals is crucial to the war effort…Civilians who are swept up in violence…are…subjected to horrendous human rights abuses…[I]ndividual countries have taken it upon themselves to self-impose laws which prevent businesses using conflict minerals…While this progresses has been hailed as positive, it appeared as if the EU was taking a surprisingly lax approach to ensuring that businesses sourced conflict free minerals…[W]e are still waiting for the culture of accepting conflict minerals in supply chains to change…The good news is that some of the biggest manufacturers of technology are taking notice and beginning to influence industry…Apple Inc. announced…that it has reached a supply-chain milestone in transparency…This follows similar moves by…Microsoft and Intel…For the people who suffer from the extraction of conflict minerals…[t]hey need humane commitments from lawmakers, businesses and consumers to help unlock their potential for growth and aid their development…

[see pages 8-11]