RADICAL SUPPLY CHAIN MANAGEMENT

The connector and cable products produced by GSN typically consist of plastics (insulator body & overmoulding) and metals (terminals & shielding incl. plating) with a ratio of 10:1. While gold and tin are essential raw materials and sourced indirectly as part of bought-in semi-finished products, the actual portion of these metals used in our connectors and cables is extremely small (< 1% of total weight).

 

Gold and tin are defined as `conflict minerals´ in the Dodd-Frank Act (USA) as they may have been mined and sold under the control of armed groups to finance conflicts and violence, especially when originating from the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and adjoining countries.

 

Based on that, to us the concept of `conflict-free´ sourcing as a broader term refers to products, practices or purposes that directly or indirectly contribute to negatively exploiting people and the planet.

 

 

At GSN, we are trying our best to establish a conflict-free supply chain that goes beyond the requirements of the Dodd-Frank Act in order to avoid any negative impact of our day-to-day business. It covers not only raw materials but also labour conditions and the final impact of our business activity.

CONFLICT-FREE SEMI-FINISHED PRODUCTS

 

Conflict-free copper is delivered to our supplier, the producer of drawn wires; conflict-free gold is delivered to the producer of gold-salt - a pre-product for the gold related electro-plating process. A similar process applies for tin. Due to technical limitations in the production process of drawn wires as well as gold-salt, minerals from different sources are being mixed together, so that GSN cannot fully trace the sourced conflict-free copper and gold down to a specific end-product anymore. By applying the mass balance method, however, the proportion of conflict-free minerals contributed to the total quantity of raw materials processed by our supplier still qualifies to get fair-mined certified.

 

CONFLICT FREE RAW MATERIALS

 

We have systems and processes in place that enable us to reasonably exclude raw materials from the Democratic Republic of Congo and adjoining countries.
 

Based on customer requirements, we may adapt our sourcing process to include fair-mining and fair-trade organizations to ensure full physical traceability throughout the supply chain. Alternatively, GSN supports the use of recycled metals and plastics (if technologically applicable).

 

In the future, we are strongly interacting with manufacturers of plastics granulate as well as fair metals. For plastics, there are certain new materials that do involve less or no raw oil and are better bio-degradable. For metals, we are waiting for the first certified "fair" metal mine within China.

 

CONFLICT-FREE PRACTICES

 

While GSN has no comprehensive knowledge about how mine workers are being treated, we can offer to use copper, tin and gold from sourcing partners that have been certified in terms of being ‘conflict-free’ and committed to ‘fair mining’.
 

During manual or automated assembly, quality inspection, logistics, administration

GSN is committed to providing safe and secure jobs under dignified labour conditions. Our operations are ISO 9001 certified and tend to outperform conventional social compliance audits of our customers.

 

We strongly invite all our customers to support us in making connectors BETTER.

We will continuously introduce conflict-free materials as well as the system of mass balance to our customers, as in our B2B environment, the customer remains the final decision maker.

TS 16949      ISO 9001        ISO 14001        UL        VDA       SOCIAL

 

© GSN Electronics Ltd 2017


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