Responsible Artisanal Gold Solutions Forum
While there has been marked progress in recent years to establish legitimate supply of tin, tantalum, and tungsten from the Great Lakes Region (GLR), artisanal gold remains a major gap and threat to responsible minerals trade – and therefore to the development and stability that such a system could help bring to countries like the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC).
The Responsible Artisanal Gold Solutions Forum (Forum) is a multi-stakeholder coalition seeking to learn about and address critical barriers to the production and trade of artisanal gold from the Great Lakes Region in a way that verifiably meets national, regional, and international laws and standards for responsible sourcing.
“Standards like the OECD Due Diligence Guidance actually encourage companies to work with artisanal miners, without demanding perfection. Responsible sourcing of minerals is about good faith efforts to work and improve conditions in the supply chain… What’s important is promoting responsible sourcing of minerals from conflict areas, despite the challenges.”
- Tyler Gillard, OECD, and Roel Nieuwenkamp, Chair of OECD Working Party on Responsible Business Conduct, March 2015
The Forum has three main goals:
- 1. Assess and design (phase 1) and implement (phase 2) pilot supply chain(s) from Eastern DRC to a participating refiner, allowing downstream manufacturers, retailers, and other end users to include this artisanal gold as part of a range of responsible sources for their products.
- 2. Support technical and policy coordination with partners who manage and implement sourcing projects, policies, guidance, and standards, to align Forum work with existing projects and systems and to mitigate risks that are likely to arise in sourcing efforts.
- 3. Promote shared learning and broader engagement of industry, government, and civil society in support of scaling up responsible artisanal gold trade in the GLR.
Forum Alignment with other Responsible Artisanal Gold Sourcing Activities
The Forum will engage organizations currently designing and implementing responsible artisanal gold sourcing projects, and assess how these sources can meet requirements for downstream buyers. The Forum will respect and promote national, regional, and international laws and standards; and liaise with existing guidance and standards systems relevant to responsible artisanal gold sourcing.