The Responsible Minerals Initiative, RMI, has launched a pilot program to gather information on global cobalt supply chains. This pilot runs from March 1 until August 31, 2018.
Cobalt is expected to see a rise in demand due to its applications in battery technologies for mobile phones, laptops, and electric/hybrid vehicles.
The Democratic Republic of Congo, DRC, is the world’s leading producer of cobalt. Via the Conflict Minerals Act, tin, tantalum, tungsten, and gold from DRC have been tracked via the RMI’s Conflict Minerals Reporting Template (CMRT). While cobalt mining is not cited as being a source for conflict in the region, there have been reports of unsafe mining practices and the use of child labor.
Based upon the cobalt pilot, your company may ask or be asked by customers about the use of cobalt and cobalt sourcing practices. To learn more about the questions please find the RMI’s cobalt reporting template (CRT) at http://www.responsiblemineralsinitiative.org/emerging-risks/cobalt-reporting-template/
After the pilot period, there will be a feedback period from September 1 to October 1, 2018 where users may submit feedback via survey to the RMI. Results of the pilot will be reviewed by RMI with a decision on the continuation of the CRT by December 2018.