Responsibly sourcing minerals from conflict-affected and high-risk areas: Lessons from the European Partnership for Responsible Minerals

In 2021, the EU Conflict Minerals Regulation will enter into force. It implies that importers of tin, tantalum, tungsten, their ores and gold from conflict-affected and high-risk areas into the EU will have a legal requirement to ensure supply chain due diligence. Furthermore, to enhance the impact of the regulation, certain ‘accompanying measures’ have been envisaged, including a multi-stakeholder initiative, the European Partnership for Responsible Minerals (EPRM).

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    This brief provides an overview of the EPRM, which has been created by a select group of governments, companies and civil society organisations. By mapping early experiences, this note provides valuable insights for stakeholders interested in more responsible mineral value chains and the role of multi-stakeholder initiatives.

    Based on interviews with members and non-members, we present key drivers for actors to join the EPRM, and what it means for the partnership. Pull factors differ between and within stakeholder groups. For companies, the pull factors are determined by aspects such as the companies’ value chain stage, their size and their level of due diligence maturity. So within the overall mission of the EPRM or other partnerships, value propositions have to be carefully tailored to the different stakeholder groups.

    The note also provides insights from the EPRM governance structure. Among other things, it highlights the importance of creating an equal power balance between stakeholder groups in the governance structure.

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