Eurasian Resources announced that it has submitted an Action Pledge to strengthen its commitment to eliminate child labour in the cobalt mining sector in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), where Unicef has estimated that close to 40,000 children are engaged in mining activities.
The Action Pledge is administered by the International Labour Organisation and the Alliance 8.7. The mechanism aims to accelerate efforts to eradicate child labour worldwide in support of the UN’s designation of 2021 as the International Year for the Elimination of Child Labour.
In terms of specific actions, ERG has said that it already has a targeted community investment strategy in partnership with the Kolwezi chapter of the Good Shepherd International Foundation (GSIF). This strategy is focused on keeping 2000 children out of artisanal and small-scale mining in 2021.
The Luxembourg-based miner also said that it is always implementing controls to ensure that its operations are in no way connected to child labour.
“The elimination of child labour is crucial to the Group’s wider efforts to help ensure a safe and sustainable future for mining communities in the DRC,” Benedikt Sobotka, CEO of Eurasian Resources, said in a media statement.
“For 2021, we have envisioned new steps to fight child labour in mining, including signing a new multi-year agreement with the GSIF to expand their support network to new communities in the DRC and developing initiatives like the Battery Passport from the GBA, which promises a fully traceable, ethical and sustainable battery supply chain.”
Eurasian owns the Metalkol Roan Tailings Reclamation operation in the southern Kolwezi region in the DRC.
RTR is a tailings reprocessing operation that aims to provide a long-term, stable supply of ‘green’, ethically-produced cobalt and copper to the market.