Treasury Report Calls for End of Conflict Minerals Regulations

The Treasury Department has called for scrapping corporate reporting requirements on conflict minerals and other topics. The department, in an October 6 report on growing the economy stated, “federal securities laws are ill-equipped to achieve such policy goals, and the effort to use securities disclosure to advance policy goals distracts from their purpose of providing effective disclosure to investors.”

Getting rid of the disclosure rules would require congressional action. Legislation that includes their repeal passed the House earlier this year, but is unlikely to be acted on by the Senate.

In the absence of action in Congress, the report suggested that the Securities and Exchange Commission tweak its rules to exempt smaller and certain newly public companies from reporting.

Although IPC members are deeply concerned by the human rights abuses that are occurring in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), the conflict minerals requirements of the Dodd-Frank financial regulation law have had questionable success in addressing the situation, while imposing significant costs on industry and consumers.

IPC continues to highlight the burden of conflict minerals compliance, most recently in meetings with members of the House and Senate during the IPC IMPACT advocacy event in Washington, D.C. in May.

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