Working Group on Tantalum and Niobium Mining
The T.I.C. established a Working Group on Tantalum and Niobium Mining in January 2009, constituted of five members of the Executive Committee together with the Technical Promotion Officer and the Secretary General.
The objectives of the Working Group are to promote the tantalum and niobium industries, to explore the issues related to the mining of their minerals on a world-wide scale and to help to improve the standards of Artisanal and Small-scale Mining (ASM) operations. In particular, the Group has developed a policy of due diligence in the form of transparency and traceability of raw materials along the supply chain.
Artisanal Scale Mining of an alluvial deposit (Karen Hayes)
The Artisanal and Small Scale Mining Policy developed by the Working Group was approved by the membership of the association during the Fiftieth General Assembly held in Tallinn, Estonia, in October 2009.
The Policy supports the recommendations of the report issued by the U.N. Panel of Experts in 2008, as well as a growing number of Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs), that disengagement is not the answer, rather a comprehensive approach that requires members to work to a code of full, documented and audited traceability and transparency throughout the supply chain. The T.I.C. condemns any activities that have the effect of routing mineral revenues to United Nations sanctioned groups; the Policy therefore accepts the requirement to identify ‘legitimate’ mines, and the need to work with the host Governments to improve governance that will ensure artisanal mining can be performed in conditions of freedom, equality, safety and human dignity.
The full text of the Policy is to be found here.
The T.I.C. has been working closely with the International Tin Research Institute (ITRI) on creating a transparent and traceable supply chain, providing seed funding in 2010 for the pilot implementation of iTSCi and encouraging T.I.C. members to join the iTSCi programme. A recent leaflet (May 2012) provides a short, general summary of the iTSCi Membership Programme, both in English and French.
Further documentation can be accessed here.