The International Tin Association (ITA) and the Responsible Minerals Initiative (RMI), an Initiative of the Responsible Business Alliance, announced Wednesday that they have jointly developed and published new “Assessment Criteria for Tin Smelting Companies,” which clarify a common upstream and downstream view of due diligence requirements for the tin supply chain.
These Criteria are designed to align with the internationally recognized OECD due diligence guidance, assist with the new London Metal Exchange (LME) responsible sourcing requirements, and satisfy other upcoming requirements such as the EU Minerals Due Diligence Regulation.
The Criteria will be used by the RMI to replace their Tin Standard for the Responsible Minerals Assurance Process (RMAP) following a transition period, and will also set the requirements for responsible sourcing to be evaluated by new assessment processes under the ITA’s Code of Conduct.
The Code has 10 Principles which are supported by more than 70 Standards. These standards are specific to various areas of the supply chain, with some being relevant to mine operators and others to smelters or secondary recycling companies and vice-versa. Each standard can be considered against a range of indicators designed to guide self-reporting by companies.
“We are excited to announce this important step forward in progressing due diligence and responsible sourcing for the tin industry” said Kay Nimmo, Head of Sustainability at ITA in a media statement. “We are proud to be able to bring together multiple views of complex due diligence expectations into this one new harmonised text which will be recognised by assessment processes of both our organisations and the market. This will not only improve risk management but will help to streamline information requests through the supply chain.”
The criteria will enable audit firms and their individual auditors to conduct rigorous and consistent checks on whether any smelter has implemented OECD supply chain due diligence. After incorporating consultation feedback from a broad spectrum of stakeholders across the tin supply chain, the Criteria have been improved by:
- Focusing exclusively on the tin value chain
- Structuring to reference each step of the OECD Due Diligence Guidance Supplement on Tin
- Highlighting additional, separate regulatory or downstream expectations
- Outlining practical expectations for red-flag review of suppliers
- Explaining how smelters may use OECD-aligned joint industry initiatives for due diligence support
- Clarifying terminology and separating procedural or guidance text for auditors
The Criteria results from cooperation between the ITA and the RMI as agreed in an MOU earlier this year. Both organisations are continuing to work together to draft further guidance on Criteria expectations in a workbook format for use by auditors and/or smelters as the new Criteria are implemented. The development of associated training materials is also planned, the groups said in the joint statement.
The new criteria are available here.
Written by Amanda Stutt.
View the original article at here.