German supplier of refractory metals and advanced ceramics, H.C. Starck, has signed an agreement with CIF Mineração S.A., a subsidiary of AMG Advanced Metallurgical Group N.V., to purchase the vast majority of tantalum and niobium concentrates from its Brazilian Mibra mine. The mine is one of the largest industrial tantalum mines in the world.
“Thanks to this agreement, we have secured a continuous supply of conflict-free tantalum raw materials for our company,” commented Dr Andreas Meier, President & CEO of the H.C. Starck Group. The mine was audited by H.C. Starck using its ‘Responsible Supply Chain Management System’ (RSCM) in order to ensure that the deliveries from the mine meet the company’s high standards when it comes to raw materials.
“H.C. Starck locked in the majority of Mibra’s production for the next two years,” stated Dr. John van Put, Senior Vice President of the Tantalum, Niobium, Surface Technologies & Ceramic Powders business unit. “As the leader in the tantalum industry, this clearly shows our commitment to secure stability of supply to our customers.”
In addition to the agreement with AMG, H.C. Starck also entered into a number of supply agreements with other established mines during the past few months. The company wants to ensure that when procuring raw materials, it remains completely independent of suppliers from conflict regions over the long-term as well. “H.C. Starck decisively condemns all activities related to the illegal or unlawful exploitation of mineral deposits, regardless of where these activities occur,” says Dr. Meier. In early April this year, the Electronics Industry Citizenship Coalition (EICC) has certified H.C. Starck’s tantalum supply chain free of conflict materials.
H.C. Starck is also working on alternative possibilities when it comes to the company’s supply of raw materials. “Thanks to our expertise, we not only process ore concentrates, but also recycle increasing amounts of secondary raw materials,” explains Dr. Meier. “Recycling with innovative technologies and a certified procurement process guarantee our customers a safe and competitive raw materials supply based on sustainable ethical, social, and environmentally sound business practices.”