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What you need to know about Downstream Audits

Earlier this month the CFSI’s 2016 Annual Conference took place in Santa Clara, California. The Conflict-Free Sourcing Initiative (CFSI) is a coalition of leading companies dedicated to improving the security and human rights conditions in their raw materials supply chains. The event itself is the pivotal annual conference for ethical mineral supply chain monitoring.

At the event RCS Global joined representatives from organisations ranging from the OECD, the China Chamber of Commerce of Metals Minerals & Chemicals Importers & Exporters (CCCMC), the European Partnership for Responsible Minerals (EPRM), the Alliance for Responsible Mining (ARM), and several leading campaigning organisations including Amnesty International, Global Witness, and the Enough Project.

One of the main areas of discussion at the event was the launch of the new CFSI Downstream Audit.

The audit provides a mechanism for companies to obtain independent validation of responsible sourcing practices in alignment with the OECD Due Diligence Guidance for Responsible Mineral Supply Chains from Conflict-Affected or High-Risk Areas. It is specifically designed to help 3TG processors, traders and manufacturers source responsibly and has particular relevance for companies importing 3TG-containing products into the EU in light of the forthcoming EU Directive on Conflict Minerals, which will require mandatory due diligence for importers of minerals and metals of 3TG.

This audit consolidates responsible sourcing reporting requirements within the downstream. This means companies can streamline audits as they may no longer need to commission and/or undergo multiple audits each year.

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RCS Global played a leading role in the development of the audit, helping to construct the process on behalf of the CFSI. Given this position we wanted to give potential users of the audit a clear outline of what exactly it is; who it is relevant for; and how the audit process itself is carried out. Finally, we wanted to highlight how completion of the audit itself can be of real value to companies themselves.

To get insight into all of these questions you can access our CFSI Downstream Audit note here.