Developed by the Electronic Industry Citizenship Coalition and Global e-Sustainability Initiative, the voluntary Conflict-Free Smelter Program provides credible third-party valuation of a smelter’s procurement activities.
Operating one of the largest gold refineries in the world, The Perth Mint is committed to boycotting conflict gold and other minerals.
“We are aware that gold mined in conflict countries has the potential to make its way to our refinery, so we are vigilant in our investigations into the credibility of our sources,” said David Woodford, refinery general manager at The Perth Mint.
Refining the total of Australia’s gold production, as well as gold doré from surrounding countries, and gold jewelry scrap from Australian and Asian markets, the Mint acknowledges that it is impossible to determine the origins of all recycled, second-hand or scrap gold.
“By abiding by the recommendations of several industry initiatives, including London Bullion Market Association’s Responsible Gold Guidance, the World Gold Council’s Conflict-Free Gold Standard and the EICC/GeSI Conflict-Free Smelter Program, we believe we are doing everything in our power to meet industry best practice,” said Woodford.
A positive assessment under the Conflict-Free Smelter Program’s validation protocols gives Perth Mint customers further assurance that the gold that passes through its refining facility is obtained from ethically trustworthy sources.
Conflict minerals are allegedly traded by militia groups in war-torn areas of Africa for financial gain to purportedly fund or benefit armed conflict and levels of violence that contribute to the abuse of human rights. Minerals smuggled out of these areas are shipped to smelters around the world for refinement.