World Gold Council’s Conflict-Free Gold Standard Published
Published 18 October, 2012
Categories: Gold mining and sustainable development
The World Gold Council, today publishes the Conflict-Free Gold Standard, an industry-led approach to combat the potential misuse of mined gold to fund unlawful armed conflict.
The World Gold Council has developed the Conflict-Free Gold Standard with its member companies, comprising the world’s leading gold mining companies, and with extensive input from governments, civil society and supply chain participants. By following this Standard, gold miners can assess their operations and provide assurance that they do not cause, support or benefit unlawful armed conflict, nor contribute to serious human rights abuses, or breaches of international humanitarian law. It is designed to increase trust and transparency in the gold supply chain. It provides further confidence that responsibly undertaken, gold mining is an important source of social and economic development.
Pierre Lassonde, Chairman of Franco-Nevada and the World Gold Council Board member responsible for leading the development of the Standard, said: “I’m proud to have led the work to design the Conflict-Free Gold Standard. The supply chain for gold is highly complex and this Standard represents a major step towards eradicating gold that fuels conflict from the legitimate supply chain. It is essential that we combat any misuse of gold by militias and criminal networks. This has been the driving force behind the development of this Standard which will apply to conflict-affected areas globally. I am particularly pleased by the extent to which we have been able to work with governments and civil society, as well as industry partners, in devising a framework that commands wide support and credibility.”
Ian Telfer, Chairman of the World Gold Council and Goldcorp, continued: “Responsible gold mining is an important contributor to both economic growth and social development in gold-producing countries. We believe that, where it is responsibly undertaken, gold mining and its related activities can play a crucial role in achieving sustainable development and alleviating poverty, as well as contributing to sustained economic growth.”
Companies will be required to publicly report on their conformance, and external assurance will be required on this disclosure.
Development of the Standard began before legislative initiatives to address the issue of minerals and conflict, such as Dodd – Frank. The Standard will act as an ‘Industry Programme’ to operationalise the OECD Due Diligence Guidance for Responsible Supply Chains of Minerals from Conflict-Affected and High-Risk Areas. It is also designed to complement and integrate with other industry-led initiatives including the London Bullion Market Association’s Responsible Gold Guidance.
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