Responsible Minerals

Responsible Mineral Sourcing

Conflict minerals refer to the metals, defined as 3TG (tantalum, tin, tungsten, and gold) by the U.S. Dodd-Frank Act, which are harvested from illegal operations involving forced labor, human trafficking, child labor, or other human rights abuses. Profit from these operations is a key source of funding for paramilitary rebel groups.

ASUS is a brand that stands for human rights and environmental protection; as such, ASUS has a social responsibility to avoid the use of conflict minerals. To meet this responsibility, the ASUS Responsible Mineral Sourcing Policy was formulated in 2013. The policy established a set of measures and has required suppliers to procure metals from smelters that are compliant with the Responsible Minerals Initiative’s RMAP standards.

ASUS Responsible Mineral Sourcing Policy

Since 2013, ASUS has worked with suppliers to implement measures under the Responsible Mineral Sourcing Policy that are based on the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) Due Diligence Guidance. These measures are:

  1. Establish a responsible mineral procurement policy in the supply chain and require suppliers to comply with its implementation
  2. Participate in international organizations; engage and exchange opinions with stakeholders to stay current with the latest information in the industry
  3. Convene an annual supplier conference where the latest information and best practices may be shared among suppliers
  4. Conduct annual due diligence investigation to all share of relevant suppliers identified for conflict minerals inquiry.
  5. Perform annual audits of suppliers in order to assess compliance
  6. Analyze suppliers’ procurement models, identify high-risk activities, and execute plans to maintain smelter compliance
  7. Assess the rate of smelter compliance with RMAP standards, and require suppliers to establish a smelter conversion plan
  8. Give suppliers who use RMAP-compliant smelters weighted scores in the ASUS Quarterly Business Review to incentivize responsible procurement

Sourcing 3TG Responsibly

ASUS initially set the goal of sourcing 3TG from 100% RMAP-compliant smelters by 2020, but successfully reached this goal early by 2018. Additionally, the list of compliant smelters is available on the ASUS CSR website. ASUS will continue to apply the Responsible Mineral Sourcing Policy in order to ensure supplier accountability and adherence.

Since 2013, ASUS has tracked the geographic distribution of compliant 3TG smelters. These smelters are located in Asia, Europe, Africa, and the Americas, and none are located in known conflict regions.

Tin and the Environment

Tin is another essential metal used in electronics, and tin mining is often associated with environmental issues. As part of the Responsible Mineral Sourcing Policy, ASUS guidelines require that suppliers source tin responsibly. ASUS also participates as a member of the Tin Working Group (TWG) to support programs in Indonesia, one of the world’s largest sources of tin, which are dedicated to responsible and sustainable mining practices. Part of the Responsible Minerals Initiative, TWG is an initiative consisting of technology companies, tin mining companies, industry groups, and NGOs that work on addressing unsustainable mining’s impacts on local environments in Indonesia.

Please visit the website below for more details:
IDH: http://www.idhsustainabletrade.com/
TWG: http://www.responsiblemineralsinitiative.org/minerals-due-diligence/tin/

New Area of Responsible Mineral Sourcing: Cobalt

Cobalt is another key material in battery manufacturing. Due to the human rights issues associated with cobalt mining, Responsible Minerals Initiative recently made cobalt a focus area and created due diligence tools in 2018, which have contributed to the development of RMAP compliance among cobalt smelters. ASUS recognizes cobalt as an important new area for responsible mineral sourcing and has created a 5-year plan to compel all suppliers to work with RMAP-compliant smelters and implement conversion plans. By 2025, all cobalt smelters must comply with RMAP standards.

ASUS Supply Chain Smelter List

ASUS RMI CMRT 6.01

ASUS RMI CRT 2.11

ASUS utilizes tools provided by the Responsible Minerals Initiative (RMI) to investigate mineral sources within the ASUS supply chain. All smelters in the following RMI list are part of the ASUS supply chain:
http://www.responsiblemineralsinitiative.org/smelters-refiners-lists/