Archives: News and Analysis

Subscribe to News and Analysis RSS Feed

The New EU Conflict Minerals Regulation — Is It Something To Be Thankful For?

Since the US Presidential Election 2 weeks ago, some have been looking forward to a possible repeal of the US conflict minerals rule by a newly-elected Trump Administration. But, the completion of the negotiations on the new EU conflict minerals regulation makes it clear that companies should not slow their due diligence efforts on the … Continue Reading

Budgeting for Conflict Minerals Compliance: Apps and Platforms — Is That All I Need?

As we approach the end of conflict minerals compliance year 4 (with 3 years of reports behind us), companies are budgeting for how they will address conflict minerals in 2017.  Since the SEC rule took effect, supply chain professionals and in-house lawyers have found that compliance is complicated, time-consuming, and still changing because of the … Continue Reading

SEC Conflict Minerals Rule Legal Challenge is Over – But Not For Good

What Just Happened? April 7, 2016 was the deadline for filing a petition for writ of certiorari to the US Supreme Court seeking a review of the court of appeals’ decision on the conflict minerals rule.   The SEC did not file the petition, and Amnesty International (the intervenor in the case) did not make the … Continue Reading

EU Conflict Minerals Regulation — What’s Going On?

Many of you are asking what is happening with the EU conflict minerals regulation, what is the likely timing for adopting the regulation, and what should you do now to prepare. Process — The development of the EU conflict minerals regulation has now entered the final negotiation phase. This phase, known as the “trialogue negotiations,” involves informal meetings between the … Continue Reading

Cobalt and Conflict Minerals — 3TG and C?

Companies and industry groups have been working for over 3 years on investigation and due diligence processes to determine the source and chain of custody of the tin, tantalum, tungsten and gold (3TG) in their products.   But, there could now be pressure to add to the list of conflict minerals.  Compliance Week raised this question last week in … Continue Reading

Resource Extraction Payment Disclosure Rule — You Have More Time To Comment

In a January 21, 2016 release titled Extension of Comment Period for Disclosure of Payments by Resource Extraction Issuers, the Securities and Exchange Commission extended the comment periods for the revised proposed Rule 13q-1 (and the related amendment to Form SD).  That proposed rule relates to the disclosure of payments by resource extraction issuers in connection with the commercial development of … Continue Reading

Slavery and Human Trafficking — How to Build Your Compliance Program

The California Transparency in Supply Chains Act of 2012 (“California Act”) applies to retailers and manufacturers with annual worldwide gross receipts over $100 million that are doing business in California. Those entities are required to disclose (by statements posted on their websites) their efforts to eradicate slavery and human trafficking from their direct supply chains … Continue Reading

Conflict Minerals — For European Companies That Haven’t Started The Process, Here’s How To Build Your Compliance Program

When the US Securities and Exchange Commission’s conflict minerals rule was issued in 2012, US reporting companies (and their suppliers) developed and implemented conflict minerals compliance programs. Companies have continued to enhance and beef up their programs since then. Now, companies should be supplementing their compliance programs to be ready to address the requirements of … Continue Reading

Here We Go Again — New Proposed Resource Extraction Payment Rules

As we discussed in posts on September 3, 2015 and on October 2, 2015, Section 1504 of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act required the SEC to issue resource extraction payment rules.  The purpose of those rules was to promote the federal government’s desire for transparency about resource extraction payments made by commercial entities to governments around the world.   The initial … Continue Reading

Conflict Minerals Rehearing Denied — Is the Legal Challenge Over?

In a summary order handed down yesterday, November 9, 2015, the Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit rejected the petitions of the SEC and Amnesty International for a rehearing en banc of the Court’s August 2015 opinion (which reaffirmed its prior ruling that a small portion of the Conflict Minerals Rule violates the First Amendment). So, is the … Continue Reading

Move UK Slavery and Human Trafficking Compliance to the Top of Your To-Do List

On October 29, 2015, the UK Government issued Guidance on the requirements of the Modern Slavery Act.  The UK Modern Slavery Act requires many commercial organizations doing business in the UK to post a slavery and human trafficking statement on their homepages.  It is now clear that those businesses (especially those with year-ends on or after March 31, 2016) need to turn their … Continue Reading

EU Conflict Minerals Regulation Not Expected Until Mid-2016 – At the Earliest

We have been watching the EU process for some time, eager to determine when the EU conflict minerals regulation will finally be adopted. A source familiar with the EU Council proceedings has told us about the Council’s next steps, which will determine when the final consensus of the regulation can be expected. The Council of the EU is currently developing its … Continue Reading

SEC Seeks Rehearing in Conflict Minerals Case

October 2, 2015 marked another step in the continuing legal challenge of the conflict minerals rule.  The SEC and Amnesty International filed petitions requesting an en banc rehearing of the April 2014 and the August 2015 D.C. Court of Appeals panel decisions, in an effort to reverse the ruling that struck down portions of the … Continue Reading

SEC Proposes To Vote On Final Resource Extraction Rule By June 27, 2016

In a previous post, we provided a summary of both the maneuverings of the SEC’s resource extraction rule after it was issued and Oxfam’s suit to speed up the SEC’s development of a revised rule after it was vacated.  As a reminder, on September 2, 2015 (nearly a year after the Oxfam case was filed), a federal judge gave the SEC a … Continue Reading

Resource Extraction Payment Rule — Not Everyone Wants to Let Sleeping Dogs Lie

On September 2, 2015, a federal judge ordered the SEC to file, by October 2, 2015, an “expedited schedule” for issuing the final resource extraction payment rule (which was required by Section 1504 of Dodd-Frank). This order is added to an already complicated setting of: increased regulation from the US, states and other countries requiring … Continue Reading

Court of Appeals’ Conflict Minerals Rule Decision is the Shiny Object – But Don’t Be Distracted

Many lawyers and supply chain managers (and reporters) have focused on the Court of Appeals’ August 18, 2015 decision confirming the court’s prior ruling that the Conflict Minerals Rule violates the First Amendment to the extent that it requires reporting companies to report that any of their products have “not been found to be ‘DRC conflict free.’” … Continue Reading

Supply Chain Policy and Disclosure Leads to Human Trafficking/Slave Labor Litigation

There has been a lot of discussion about the case against Costco relating to its California Transparency in Supply Chains Act disclosure.  Here is the link to the post about the Costco case that I co-wrote for our Global Supply Chain Law Blog .  This case is an example of how supply chain policy and disclosure can lead to litigation.   … Continue Reading

Impact of the Development of the EU Conflict Minerals Regulation

Editorial Note: This article was published on African Law & Business’s website on July 14, 2015. The article can be found at: http://www.africanlawbusiness.com/news/5682-conflict-minerals-light-at-the-end-of-the-tunnel.   On 20 May 2015, the European Parliament voted to reject the proposal of the European Commission and the Parliament’s Committee on International Trade (INTA) for a voluntary system of self-certification for importers … Continue Reading

European Parliament Votes In Favor of Mandatory Certification System for Importers of Conflict Minerals and Disclosure by Downstream Companies

On May 20, the European Parliament voted to reject the proposal of the European Commission and the Parliament’s Committee on International Trade (INTA) for a voluntary system of self-certification for importers of conflict minerals into the EU. The amended draft regulation marks a significant departure from the proposed draft regulation, calling for mandatory compliance by … Continue Reading

European Parliament Committee Votes for a Mandatory System for Conflict Minerals Importers

On April 14, the International Trade Committee of the European Parliament (INTA) voted on the amendments to the EU’s conflict minerals regulation that were proposed by its members. The INTA committee adopted an amended report strengthening the system of due diligence for conflict minerals importers that was initially proposed. The MEPs voted in favor of … Continue Reading

European Parliament Debates the Proposed Conflict Minerals Regulation

On March 19, the International Trade Committee of the European Parliament (INTA) met to debate the amendments to the conflict minerals regulation that were proposed by its members. The amendments reflect the views of the political parties that have been expressed in the ongoing discussions in the committee. The debate focused on the question of … Continue Reading

Update on the EU’s Proposed Regulation on Conflict Minerals – Report on February 23 Meeting of INTA Committee

The European Parliament Committee on International Trade (INTA) met on February 23 to discuss their draft report on the proposed regulation on conflict minerals. This meeting followed the public hearing held by the committee in December 2014. The debate opened with the rapporteur, Iuliu Winkler, a Romanian member of the European Parliament (MEP) from the … Continue Reading
LexBlog