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Demonstrating ESG criteria could sustain and increase demand for gold in future

Terry Heymann, CFO, World Gold Council

 

A while ago, you were speaking about Revolutionizing the Precious Metal Supply Chain through ESG Criteria. Tell us a little more about it.

There is an increasing investor interest in responsible business practices across the precious metal supply chain- in mining, in refining and along the supply chain. Importance is being placed on operating to high standards with regard to Environment, Social and Governance (ESG) criteria. It is an important topic for the industry. There are lots of areas where work is already underway.

Climate change is a big issue. Investors across the world are looking at climate change and are thinking about how they can support positive actions on climate change. The gold mining sector has a good story to tell in terms of what’s happening around decarbonization. In particular, many gold mines which historically have relied on diesel, have moved on to renewable sources of energy such as solar and hydropower. Lots of really good examples on how decarbonization is taking place in the gold sector.

When we think about responsible mining in a broad sense, it’s really important that gold mines do operate responsibly. When gold is mined in a responsible way, the benefits for the communities, the workers and the environment around the gold mine can be positively impacted. So, setting out a clear expectation of what is responsible gold mining is really important to give everybody confidence and to allow gold mining to be that vehicle to drive community development.

What is WGC doing to increase investors interest in Gold?

At the moment, we are actively working on ESG space around responsible gold mining principles. We see increasing interest from investors who want to have confidence that their investments are ESG compatible and meet high standards. That’s an opportunity from an investment space.

Setting out the responsible gold mining principles in one framework to define the whole set of criteria that constitute responsible gold mining, we believe is going to be important to sustain and increase demand for gold in future.

 

Disclaimer: Views are personal and not the views of the publisher.