KEMET CEO testifies on conflict mineral reporting

Nov. 20, 2015

KEMET, a global supplier of electronic components, announced that its chief executive officer, Per Loof, testified in a hearing before the U.S. House Financial Services Committee’s Monetary Policy and Trade Subcommittee, as part of the full committee’s continued oversight of the Dodd-Frank Act, signed into law by President Obama five years ago.

This November 17 hearing, entitled “Dodd-Frank Five Years Later: What Have We Learned from Conflict Minerals Reporting?” focused on Section 1502 of Dodd-Frank, requiring public companies to disclose whether they source “conflict minerals”—tin, tungsten, tantalum, and gold—from the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and its nine neighboring countries.

Mr. Loof’s testimony reviewed KEMET’s vertically integrated, closed-pipe supply-chain and socially-sustainable sourcing model for conflict-free tantalum ore in the village of Kisengo, DRC. This village has been positively impacted by Dodd-Frank through KEMET’s investment in an industrial conflict-free mine as well as a number of infrastructure improvements, including a hospital, school, clean water wells, and solar powered street lighting. Mr. Loof’s testimony discussed the value of this investment for both KEMET, its suppliers, customers, and the industry as a whole.

“We have shown that it is possible to succeed in business while being economically and socially responsible,” stated Loof. “Section 1502 has been very good for the tantalum industry, and there is now a clear roadmap on how to ethically source DRC tantalum. The Act has directly enabled companies like KEMET to, after decades of absence, embrace the business and social opportunities in the DRC, to develop a viable and secure supply chain of tantalum that benefits both KEMET’s customers and the entire industry, and to markedly improve both KEMET’s competiveness and the life of the people in the village.”

Mr. Loof concluded that although KEMET cannot solve all the problems in the DRC, the company has and will continue to have a positive and lasting impact. As Congressman Brad Sherman (D-CA), a senior member of the House Financial Services and Foreign Affairs Committee’s noted during the hearing, companies such as KEMET are “doing well by doing good” and succeeding while being economically and socially responsible.

About the Author

Rick Nelson | Contributing Editor

Rick is currently Contributing Technical Editor. He was Executive Editor for EE in 2011-2018. Previously he served on several publications, including EDN and Vision Systems Design, and has received awards for signed editorials from the American Society of Business Publication Editors. He began as a design engineer at General Electric and Litton Industries and earned a BSEE degree from Penn State.

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