Learning from our experience combating conflict minerals in the DRC and surrounding countries, we are expanding our efforts.
This aligns with growing awareness of minerals sourcing issues beyond the DRC and surrounding countries covered by the U.S. Dodd–Frank Act. The EU Conflict Minerals Regulation, which covers EU imports of 3TG minerals from all regions of the world, requires all large EU 3TG metal importers and smelters to become OECD Due Diligence Guidance. Although HP’s operations are not within the scope of the EU regulation, we are aligning our policy and approach to the extent practicable and preparing to support our customers’ requirements consistent with the regulation.
HP supports retention of the U.S. conflict minerals reporting framework as an economic driver for smelters to responsibly source minerals in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and surrounding countries. In the European Union, we support implementation of the Conflict Minerals Regulation, which appropriately focuses on responsible smelter sourcing regardless of country of mineral origin, including CAHRAs worldwide.
We do not support de facto embargoes of minerals from the DRC and adjoining countries, nor from other conflict-affected regions. We believe it is more effective to use our leverage (as a company and within cross-industry collaborations) to address issues and promote positive change. This helps to protect people in those regions while maintaining their economic opportunities. We are actively involved in the Responsible Minerals Initiative (RMI) and support its efforts to engage with government stakeholders.
The Responsible Business Alliance (RBA) is the parent organization of the RMI. In 2020, we supported revision of the RBA Code of Conduct so that it would address sourcing from any CAHRAs worldwide, not only from the DRC and Covered Countries. Leading up to this, we also supported RMI’s work to help smelters develop processes to identify CAHRAs, as well as RMI’s work to fully align its processes and standards for assessing smelters’ sourcing practices with the OECD Guidance on sourcing from CAHRAs.
Our minerals due diligence and reporting also include cobalt, which has been linked to human rights risks. We expect our suppliers to have policies addressing cobalt, to report to HP the cobalt refiners they use, and to encourage these refiners to complete an RMI audit. Additionally, we encourage suppliers to engage in collaborative industry action through RMI. See our Report on Cobalt, and our responsible minerals sourcing expectations for suppliers in HP’s General Specification for the Environment.