Public consultation process in response to new laws and regulations.
Fairtrade International has launched a public consultation on its Standard for Gold and Associated Precious Metals for Artisanal and Small-scale Mining to explore how it can best tackle new international regulations and legislation in the gold industry.
The overall aim is for Fairtrade to offer a small, but scalable solution to companies looking to source gold from artisanal and small-scale miners that can demonstrate conformance with the OECD Due Diligence Guidance for Responsible Supply Chains of Minerals from Conflict-Affected and High-Risk Areas.
The consultation period will run until October 17 2014 and the revisions to Fairtrade’s Standard will be published in December.
The process will give the industry a chance to input their views on what options should be included in the document.
Fairtrade International’s Gold and Precious Metals Programme Coordinator Greg Valerio, said: “This process will ensure that the Fairtrade Standard for Gold, will become even stronger, deeper and more aligned to international conflict-free sourcing protocols, the outcome of which will create more positive opportunities for artisanal and small scale miners and their communities globally and give gold buyers and the jewellery industry the reassurances it needs when it comes to conflict free sourcing regulations.
“This is a significant development for Fairtrade gold and will further strengthen our offering, enabling producers in situations of political and economic turbulence to provide buyers with the information and assurances they need to maintain their commercial relationships.
“It is vital that we are nimble and able to adapt Fairtrade Standard to this evolving and complex legal context so that we can enable much-needed systemic change in the gold industry”.
The consultation will cover a number of topics, including the new requirements which relate to the Dodd-Frank Act, Section 1502; draft EU Regulation incentivising self-certification for importers of tin, tantalum, tungsten and gold who choose to import responsibly into the EU; and the OECD DDG (Due Diligence Guidance) – referred to by both the US law and draft EU law; the increased participation of workers in the governance of mining organisations; the management and eradication of toxic substances and the protection of human rights.
The project will be carried out according to the Standard Operating Procedures for the development of Fairtrade Standards. More information on these procedures can be found at fairtrade.net