Eurasian Resources Group announced this week that it joined forces with international development organization Pact to carry out the initiative “Children out of Mining-Northern Kolwezi” in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).
The project is being implemented in the southern Kolwezi region, where Eurasian Resources Group’s Metalkol RTR project is located and where management has made it a point of honour to promote responsible and sustainable cobalt production. With reserves in the order of 3.5 million tonnes, the DRC hosts most of the world’s cobalt and is responsible for 50% of the global supply.
“Artisanal and small-scale mining accounts for approximately 25% of global cobalt supply and as the Fourth Industrial Revolution gathers momentum, so too does demand for the key metal. In servicing this increasing demand, metals suppliers need to ensure that cobalt is produced and sourced sustainably and responsibly. In this effort and through ‘Children Out of Mining-Northern Kolwezi,’ we aim to continue to offer our support to local communities in the DRC, a country which is a cornerstone of ERG’s cobalt business,” the company’s CEO, Benedikt Sobotka, said in a media statement.
The goal of “Children Out of Mining-Northern Kolwezi” is to run a series of capacity-building interventions focused on tackling the risks children may face in artisanal and small-scale mining.
According to the Luxembourg-based miner, the project will also support miners aged between 15 and 17 by way of a 6-month vocational training program accompanied by short-term remuneration designed to help them transition out of their current occupation.
“ERG is making it possible to scale proven interventions that are vital to children’s ability to transition out of mining,” Pact’s CEO and President, Mark Viso, said in the media brief.