Conflict Minerals: Insights from Company Disclosures and Agency Actions, Statement of Kimberly Gianopoulos, Director, International Affairs and Trade, Statement for the Record for the Subcommittee on Africa and Global Health Policy, Committee on Foreign Relations   [open pdf - 1MB]

"Armed groups in eastern DRC continue to profit from the exploitation of minerals, according to the United Nations. Provisions in t he 2010 Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act require that U.S. agencies take certain actions. For example, the act requires, among other things, SEC to promulgate regulations regarding the use of conflict minerals from the DRC and adjoining countries. The act also requires Commerce to submit a report that includes an assessment of IPSAs filed in conjunction with SEC disclosures. As we reported in 2015, U.S. agencies have supported a range of initiatives; for example, strengthening traceability mechanisms that minimize the risk that minerals that have been exploited by illegal armed groups will enter the supply chain. Based on an August 2016 report (GAO-16-805), this statement examines (1) company disclosures filed in 2015 in response to the SEC conflict minerals regulations and (2) Commerce's actions regarding its conflict minerals-related requirements under the Dodd-Frank Act. GAO analyzed a generalizable random sample of Specialized Disclosures (Form SDs) filed with SEC and interviewed relevant officials for that report. [...] In its August 2016 report, GAO recommended that Commerce establish a plan outlining steps and time frames for assessing the accuracy of due diligence processes such as IPSAs, and developing the necessary expertise to fulfill these requirements. Commerce concurred with GAO's recommendation."

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