The European Commission Prepares to Launch “Due Diligence Ready!” Initiative

The European Commission Prepares to Launch “Due Diligence Ready!” Initiative

On November 20, 2019, the European Commission (EC) will launch a new initiative, Due Diligence Ready!, to help small and medium enterprises (SMEs) improve mineral and metal due diligence in their supply chains.

According to the EC, “Mineral resources hold great potential for development but can, in some regions, fuel violence, human rights abuse and negative environmental impacts. Consequently, customers, suppliers, regulators, investors, non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and end-consumers are increasingly asking companies, including SMEs, to demonstrate that minerals and metals entering their supply chains haven’t contributed to harming people or the environment. ‘Due diligence ready!’ was developed in response to these requests.”


Find out what the European Union Conflict Mineral Rule means for your company in our guide.


What Is “Due Diligence Ready!”? 

Due Diligence Ready! is a free online portal designed to make meeting new supply chain due diligence obligations and expectations a straightforward and efficient process for SMEs. The portal provides SMEs access to information, tools and training materials in seven different languages, offering guidance on the development of due diligence programs. While the information provided primarily concerns tungsten, tin, tantalum and gold (3TGs), resources on other minerals and metals will also be available.

The Due Diligence Ready! initiative comes ahead of the European Union (EU) Conflict Minerals Regulation, which will take effect across the EU in January 2021. The new regulation will require 3TG importers, smelters and refiners to perform due-diligence checks on imports surpassing certain volume thresholds. Many industries will need to make preparations for the upcoming legislation, as these minerals and metals are used in the production of a wide range of everyday products, including cell phones, computers, cars and jewelry.

Although Due Diligence Ready! provides a starting point for conflict mineral due diligence programs, it is important for companies to understand regulations often continue to evolve. For instance, in a joint effort by the EC, the European External Action Service and the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), a list of conflict-affected and high risk areas is currently being developed for release in January 2021. The list and its resulting best practices will likely impact the Conflict Mineral Regulation and the companies in its scope.

Stay Ahead of Regulatory Updates 

Mineral regulations will continue to evolve, making compliance difficult for SMEs as the information they rely on becomes outdated. A third-party supply chain data management company, like Assent Compliance, can make navigating regulations easier by allowing your company to quickly adapt to legislative updates. Assent’s Corporate Social Responsibility Suite allows users to survey suppliers, conduct smelter risk assessments, prepare a CMR and more. For more information, contact us at info@assentcompliance.com.

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