From Africa Confidential:
The EU’s legislation sets up a self-certification system. It will require large companies with more than 500 employees to disclose information on supply-chain due diligence. It will establish an approved list of ‘responsible’ smelters and refiners which can assure transparency and certainty to downstream companies as to the ethical origins of the minerals. The new system will only come into force after a transitional two-year period in order to allow time to set up a third-party audit system and for importers to become familiar with their obligations.
In my opinion every “voluntary” regulation is not worth the paper its written on. Due diligence should be a matter of course, be it when it comes to conflict minerals or social and environmental protection standards. That the E.U. is buckling before the before the lobbyists in this regard is shameful.