Artisanal gold mining in Colombia is associated with the financing of armed conflicts. The adoption of the EU Conflict Minerals Regulation in 2017 has raised attention to respective challenges. One of the world's largest gold smelters, the Swiss smelter Metalor, has consequently withdrawn from small-scale mining business. However, as the following study argues, the link between artisanal gold mining and the financing of armed conflicts in Colombia is much more complex. At the same time, small-scale mining faces criminalization by national legislation. A general boycott of this sector by major smelters can further marginalize the artisanal mining sector in favor of international mining companies. At the same time, the EU Conflict Minerals Regulation excludes many serious human rights violations, such as violent expulsions and massive environmental destruction by large mining companies destroying the livelihoods of local populations.
The present study analyses in more detail how artisanal and industrial mining are related, which role they play in the context of armed conflicts and how national and international legislation and policies contribute to respective tensions. We then introduce various policy recommendations at both international and local level.
In the download area you will find:
1. Study "MINING PRODUCTION, TERRITORY AND CONFLICT IN COLOMBIA" (engl. translation of the spanish version).
Supplemented by an English summary with policy recommendations:
2. Gold Mining, Human Rights and Due Diligence in Colombia: analysis and recommendations towards the implementation of the EU Regulation on Responsible Sourcing and further legislation (Summary of Study by Johanna Sydow)