The second phase of the ITRI Tin Supply Chain Initiative (iTSCi) will be implemented and mines selected for the pilot trial with the full support of the DRC’s Ministry of Mines. ITRI has been working since early 2009 on improving due diligence, governance, and traceability of cassiterite from the DRC. The first phase of the iTSCi scheme has been operating for almost a year and ensures all official export and evaluation documentation is available with mineral shipments for export. Phase 2 will begin to track minerals and provide verifiable provenance information from individual mine sites in eastern DRC.

Initial pilot sites have been selected at Bisie, in North Kivu and Nyabibwe in South Kivu, with further sites in Katanga and other provinces also potential sites. Bisie is considered a key site for cassiterite, while Nyabibwe is relevant for both cassiterite and columbotantalite. Work in the field at Nyabibwe will be carried out in co-operation with BGR, an organisation also starting a project on the implementation of mine certification standards.

“The agreement with the Ministry of Mines is an essential element of the pilot project,” said David Bishop, MD of ITRI. “We intend to start the tagging of mineral batches within a matter of weeks and we are extremely pleased that ITRI and its partners can be assured of the full backing of the DRC government.”
Participation in the iTSCi scheme is open to any non-ITRI smelter companies who are willing to follow the requirements of the due diligence scheme.