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Dodd-Frank Section 1502/ Lipmann Compliance ref: Tantalum & Tungsten

Date: 21 Jan 2013

This section of our website contains details of our policy towards compliance with Section 1502 of the U.S. Dodd Frank law governing conflict minerals.

The Dodd-Frank Act which came into law in the USA in 2010, as a response to the Financial Crash of 2008, contains a sub-section (1502) addressing the issue of consumer responsibility towards ‘conflict minerals’ in the supply chain.

The intended purpose of the act was to create a chain of transparency from the source of minerals in conflict zones, defined essentially as The Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and neighbouring countries.

Modelled on ‘conflict diamonds’ initiatives, this piece of legislation seeks to change circumstances on the ground in producing countries.  The aim is to prevent the proceeds of minerals sales getting into the hands of war-lords and mitigate the suffering of communities/effect on the environment in DRC, whose way of life has been dictated by compulsory artisanal mining, with side-effects of human-rights violations, (including rape, mutilation, use of child-soldiers).

For further background information please click this link: http://www.sec.gov/rules/final/2012/34-67716.pdf

Lipmann’s policy with regard to the two conflict minerals with which we work – Tantalum and Tungsten metal – is to trade these, where possible, in the form of high-purity scrap, suitable for delivery to end-users.  Under OECD guidance, scrap is defined as:

“Metals reasonably assumed to be recycled are excluded from the scope of this Guidance.  Recycled metals are reclaimed end-user or post-consumer products, or scrap processed metals created during product manufacturing.  Recycled metal includes excess, obsolete, defective, and scrap metal materials which contain refined or processed metals that are appropriate to recycle in the production of tin, tantalum, tungsten and/or gold. Minerals partially processed, unprocessed or a bi-product from another ore are not recycled metals.”  (Page 14 of pdf, page 12 of printed document)

Scrap, therefore, as defined in the above paragraph, is regarded as ‘DRC-Conflict Free’.

In spite of the foregoing, Lipmann Walton has instituted a management system to document and verify that all scrap purchased, is genuinely scrap (and not prime metal).  This now forms part of our ISO management system, audited by Moodys.

Where prime metal is sourced, Lipmann Walton will either purchase from companies listed under the ‘Conflict-Free Smelter Scheme’ (CFS), or, if not part of this scheme, carry out due diligence and obtain manufacturer’s certification, stating country/ specific mine from where raw material was sourced.  It is important here to note that, under the guidance, it is not illegal to source raw material from conflict zones, if it is correctly ‘bagged & tagged’ (as per EICC/GeSI) from listed sources