EU agrees law to curb flow of conflict minerals – much ado about nothing

According to REUTERS (WORLD NEWS | Tue Nov 22, 2016 | 1:47pm EST), The European Union agreed a deal on Tuesday to stem the flow of gold and other metals used to fund armed conflicts or produced in conditions that breach human rights.

EU importers of tin, tungsten, tantalum, gold and their ores will from 2021 have to carry out checks on their suppliers in legislation that will also apply to smelters and refiners.

Human rights campaigners said the agreement was a half-hearted first step, with imports of finished products that may contain the minerals not included and an end result that exempted a large number of companies.

To read it in full: http://www.reuters.com/article/us-eu-trade-conflict-id

Much ado about nothing, one of my favourite Shakespeare plays.

Going to PDAC – meet and talk

A last minute decision – I am traveling to Toronto to attend PDAC 2016.

It’s the perfect place to meet and talk: Angola, Mozambique, Brazil and Portugal, diamond and other gems, Nb-Ta and other pegmatite minerals, tungsten, gold, ferrous and base metal deposits, industrial minerals, natural stone. Challenges and opportunities.

Where and when can we meet? luischambel@sinese.pt

 

 

Rubies from Mozambique – Field report published by GIA

I have had some involvement with mineral projects in Mozambique; I follow with attention news, especially on tantalum, diamonds – Diamonds discovered in Mozambique – Mustang Resources’ Save Project, coal – and rubies – Montepuez’ GEMFIELDS rubi mine – newest updates on the world’s single largest ruby and corundum deposit.

I have just came across an excellent GIA field report on the Mozambican Montepuez ruby mine, originally published at the 2015 Spring issue of GEMS & GEMOLOGY.

Enjoy.

USGS Tantalum report (just published)

Two years ago I was involved in a very interesting tantalum project in the Republic of Congo (Brazzaville) – photo gallery here. I have since then followed with attention this metal’s market news (and its idiosyncrasies, being one of the 3TG minerals – subject to control under the conflict minerals framework).

USGS just published a report on the evolution of this metal’s market and production structure and origin in the last 15 years. It’s well worth reading (thanks to USGS for publishing the report) – you can get it here.

Responsible sourcing for mining & metals – ICMM

Companies have a shared responsibility for the materials that they produce. Demonstrating value focuses on the two complementary sides of the responsible sourcing debate – sustainable procurement and responsible supply.

A client (a small to medium sized operation) recently asked my help to certify the origin of its production in a neighbouring country of DRC. If it’s diamonds we talking about, there are already standard procedures in place (it’s relatively easy); if it’s one of the 3TG (tin,tantalum, tungsten or gold), then it’s a complex maze, especially if you are outside the Great Lakes countries but in their shadow (neighbouring countries).

In this situation, there is no one locally to whom you may ask for advice (no financing for institutions to have representations in the countries outside the main focus of attention; yet local producers have to “exercise supply chain due diligence“, whatever this is (don’t bother explaining the concept, I understand it in theory; how does a small to medium operation puts it into practice?).

I use ICMM (as well as CIM and PDAC’s) guidelines and publications in the projects I design; I did it in the past and am doing it now in an exploration project in Angola. I must confess that I only check for new ICMM updates on a need to use basis; this time I downloaded the new report on responsible sourcing from today’s e-mail. Perhaps I will get (and my client) some insight from this document.

You may obtain it here or directly from ICMM website.