Significant human rights violations and environmental destruction by armed groups in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and surrounding countries have been broadly recognized as serious issues by the international community, and it has been noted that the minerals produced in this region have become sources of funding for these armed groups. The US’ Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act (hereinafter, the Dodd-Frank Act) names four minerals produced and refined in this region – tin, tantalum, tungsten and gold – as conflict minerals, and requires companies to disclose information on the refiners of parts/materials that include these minerals.
While not subject to the restrictions imposed by the US’ Dodd-Frank Act, JVCKENWOOD agrees with such initiatives vis-à-vis conflict minerals, and has participated in the Responsible Minerals Trade Working Group of the Japan Electronics and Information Technology Industries Association (JEITA), and as a member is pursuing its own voluntary efforts for the sake of global sustainable procurement.
More specifically, we have sent out conflict mineral survey forms to our primary suppliers who handle about 11,000 parts that fall within the scope of conflict minerals, and inspected 3TG* refineries; a cumulative total of 1,273 suppliers received our survey forms over the period of FY2014-2017, with a response rate of 91.7%.
Dealing with conflict minerals is an important part of establishing responsible supply chains, and sufficient attention must be paid not to be complicit in human rights violations in the course of procuring raw materials. The entire JVCKENWOOD Group will continue to address the issue of conflict minerals while trying to cooperate with other companies and industry groups and others.
*3TG: an abbreviation meaning tin, tantalum, tungsten and gold; the term refers collectively to these four minerals and their derivatives