On the 10th November 2015, the U.S. Court of Appeals for D.C. denied the requests of the SEC and Amnesty International to rehear the court’s 18th August decision on conflict minerals, which in itself had already reaffirmed the April 2014 majority decision which concluded that having to describe products as having “not been found to be DRC conflict free” would be compelled speech violating the first amendment of the US constitution. It is still possible that this long running battle could continue, and the SEC has 90 days to submit a further request for rehearing however observers tend to believe that the current situation will remain and that it is unlikely that an independent private sector audit (IPSA) will be required for calendar year 2015. To re-summarise, in April 2014 the SEC indicated that registrants are not required to identify products as “DRC conflict free,” having “not been found to be ‘DRC conflict free'” or “DRC conflict undeterminable” and that no IPSA will not be required unless a registrant voluntarily opts to describe a product as “DRC conflict free”.
US Court denies further rehearing on conflict minerals
Nov 11, 2015