September 16, 2019
 In 2023-Impact of Conflict Minerals

Country: Russian Federation
Delegate Name: Ella Duffner

A mineral is referred to as a conflict mineral when, in politically unstable areas, armed groups use forced labor to mine it. Often these conflict minerals can be found in mobile phones, cars, and jewelry and can be extracted all over the world. A conflict-free mineral is considered a mineral extracted that does not directly or indirectly benefit armed groups. Conflict minerals are commonly tin, tantalum, tungsten, and gold ore concentrate or metal, also known as 3TGs. Many laws and certification standards now exist to hold companies responsible, and while this is a global issue, it is imperative that domestic governments are allowed to solve these issues within their own borders. National collaboration on solutions and policies in regard to these issues will not be ignored, but national governments must not be undermined in the discussion of this issue.

While some encourage more states to adopt domestic policies in relation to the issue of conflict minerals, all that can be done is encouraged. The United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, which apply to all States and business enterprises, currently sets a clear precedent on the State’s jurisdiction to prevent human rights abuse within their territories, of which the Russian Federation stands with. The OECD Due Diligence Guidance for Responsible Supply Chains of Minerals from Conflict-Affected and High-Risk Areas is also currently in place, which applies to companies to avoid contribution to conflict through conflict mineral purchases. While the Russian Federation is a non-member economy of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, a working relationship exists between the Russian Federation and the OECD.

The Russian Federation believes it is imperative that respective governments be allowed to handle conflict mineral issues within their countries without being undermined by the policies created nationally. It is also important that people negatively affected by this issue as well as the environment must be taken into consideration, but domestic governments must be allowed to do this under the current working policies in solutions already in place.

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