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Miners moving fast and ethically in response to COVID-19: ICMM

The International Council on Mining and Metals said company members had donated more than US$315 million to global COVID-19 response efforts, as it outlined the industry’s support to nations, communities and supply chains in a briefing this month.
Miners moving fast and ethically in response to COVID-19: ICMM Miners moving fast and ethically in response to COVID-19: ICMM Miners moving fast and ethically in response to COVID-19: ICMM Miners moving fast and ethically in response to COVID-19: ICMM Miners moving fast and ethically in response to COVID-19: ICMM

Anglo American’s Kumba Iron Ore Northern Cape delivered water facilities to informal settlements

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However it said the figure only scratched the surface of the work being done by members and cited in-kind efforts, along with other support for health care including the donation of hospitals.

The briefing noted in South Africa, Anglo American had made its Highveld Hospital available for treating COVID-19 cases and AngloGold Ashanti had donated two hospitals.

It said Gold Fields' South Deep mine had committed to continue to pay small, medium-sized and microenterprise service providers and small-scale contractors the equivalent of ZAR22 million (US$1.25 million) for the period it was under care and maintenance, due to the country's COVID-19 restrictions.

Other efforts included various mental health initiatives, Vale's PPE donations in Brazil, BHP's accelerated payments programme to small business partners in Australia, African Rainbow Minerals' education support in South Africa and Barrick Gold's tailored responses in different jurisdictions.

"Building on the values of ICMM's Mining Principles, company members have been pro-active in responding to the demands of COVID-19: moving fast and acting ethically to protect and care for employees and surrounding communities, as an over-riding priority," ICMM said.

The council had published an updated set of principles and member requirements in February, in an effort to move with rising stakeholder expectations around environmental, social and governance best practice. 

ICMM said in the briefing mining and metals were "critically important" to society and to prevent inadequate supply in the future, it was important "governments promote policies that allow for a quick return to normal".

The council said it brought together 27 mining and metals companies and more than 35 national and regional associations.

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