News
09 December 2021

Fostering multi-stakeholder initiatives is key to a transparent cobalt supply chain: Cobalt Institute joins the Fair Cobalt Alliance

The Cobalt Institute - the not-for-profit global trade association composed of producers, users, recyclers, and traders of cobalt - has joined the Fair Cobalt Alliance (FCA). The decision to join the multi-stakeholder action platform reflects the Institute’s vision to promote the sustainable, transparent and responsible production and use of cobalt in all its forms.

The Cobalt Institute joins leading stakeholders - including Glencore, China Molybdenum, Tesla and Britishvolt, alongside the Responsible Cobalt Initiative, NGOs and academia - to support endeavors that strengthen and professionalize the Democratic Republic of the Congo’s (DRC) artisanal and small-scale mining (ASM) cobalt industry, work towards child labor-free communities, and contribute to local economic development.

Adam McCarthy, Cobalt Institute’s President, commented: “The Cobalt Institute recognizes that legitimate cobalt mined by responsible ASM operations can play an important and sustainable role in the DRC’s economy, as well as in supporting a just and green energy transition. Addressing the root causes related to informal ASM and child labor must be a shared responsibility in which all actors across the value chain play their part”.

From the Cobalt Institute’s perspective, formalizing ASM in the DRC should include the development and monitoring of transparent frameworks and standards in line with basic human rights principles and environmental standards. This must be supported by investment in off-site programs, including efforts to prevent and remediate child labor. The Cobalt Institute is looking forward to offering our skills, knowledge and resources to tackle these topics within the FCA.

Dr Assheton Carter, FCA’s Executive Director, added: “The Cobalt Institute’s membership of the FCA, in addition to our work with existing member the Responsible Cobalt Initiative, is great example of like-minded organizations coming together for a common cause. In order to affect genuine change for ASM mining communities, we need to bring together investment and expertise from across the cobalt value chain. With a common commitment to strengthen and professionalize ASM, together we can make strides towards a more responsible and fairer supply of cobalt.”

About Fair Cobalt Alliance: The FCA is a multi-stakeholder action platform that brings together actors from across the entire cobalt mineral supply chain to provide an answer to increasing scrutiny on ASM cobalt mining and the DRC mining sector. Its purpose is to assist in the building of a DRC cobalt mining sector that is known to be a responsible partner in providing the minerals needed for a new green economy. This includes mobilizing the resources of the whole supply chain to deliver technical assistance and investment to realize the vision of a formal, fair and safe ASM cobalt sector.

 

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