Today, the U.S. Department of State, the U.S. Agency for International Development and a coalition of private sector partners, civil society, and other organizations, launched the Public-Private Alliance for Responsible Minerals Trade (PPA) in Washington, DC. The PPA is part of ongoing U.S. efforts to help the Democratic Republic of the Congo and other governments in the region break the link between the illicit minerals trade and the ongoing violence and human rights abuses. The U.S. government is working with Congolese partners, the private sector and civil society to help ensure responsible trade in minerals that does not benefit rebel groups or abusive army units.
The PPA combines the financial and technical resources of the U.S. government, companies, trade associations and civil society to assist with the development of pilot supply chain systems that will allow businesses to source minerals from mines that have been audited and certified to be conflict-free. The alliance will provide a platform for coordination among government, industry, and civil society actors seeking to support conflict-free sourcing from the DRC.
The U.S. Department of State and U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) will invest approximately $3.2 million in the PPA, specifically to support conflict-free minerals certification and traceability. More than 25 companies, trade associations, and other organizations have expressed their intention to join the PPA and have already pledged over $830,000 toward the goal of $2 million in additional funding by the end of 2012.