The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) analyzes mineral and metal supply chains to identify and describe major components of material flows from ore extraction, through intermediate forms, to a final product. Supply chain analyses may be used (1) to identify risks to the United States associated with the supply of critical and strategic minerals and metals and (2) to provide greater supply chain transparency so that policymakers have the fact-based information needed to formulate public policy. This fact sheet focuses on the post-mining/pre-consumer-product part of the tin supply chain. The USGS National Minerals Information Center (NMIC) has been asked by governmental and non-governmental organizations to provide information about tantalum, tin, tungsten, and gold (collectively known as “3TG minerals”) processing facilities worldwide in response to U.S. legislation aimed at identifying and removing the supply chain links between the trade in these minerals and civil unrest in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and adjacent countries.
Post-beneficiation processing plants (generally called smelters and refineries) for 3TG mineral ores and concentrates were identified by company and industry association representatives as being a link in the 3TG mineral supply chain through which these minerals can be traced to their source of origin (mine). The determination of the source of origin is critical to the development of a complete and transparent conflict-free mineral supply chain. Tungsten processing plants were the subject of the first fact sheet in this series published by the USGS NMIC in August 2014. Background information about historical conditions and multinational stakeholders’ voluntary due diligence guidance for minerals from conflict-affected and high-risk areas was presented in the tungsten fact sheet. Tantalum processing plants were the subject of the second fact sheet in this series published by the USGS NMIC in December 2014. This fact sheet, the third in the series about 3TG minerals, focuses on the tin supply chain by listing selected processors that produced tin materials commercially worldwide during 2013–14. It does not provide any information regarding the sources of the material processed in these facilities.
|Title||Conflict minerals from the Democratic Republic of the Congo—Tin processing plants, a critical part of the tin supply chain|
|Publication Subtype||USGS Numbered Series|
|Series Title||Fact Sheet|
|Record Source||USGS Publications Warehouse|
|USGS Organization||National Minerals Information Center|