Linking the Bolivian Minerals to the European Industry

Project partners were Make ICT Fair, CATAPA and Oblaten - Solidaridad Nación Uru (SNU). Published in November 2020.

Zinc, lead, silver and indium: Linking the Bolivian minerals to the European industry

From the introduction:

Although indium might be a rare metal, it is not rare at all in your daily life. No smartphone can be produced without its use. Flatscreens, touchscreens, LED lights, photovoltaic panels and even the high efficiency glass of the windows in your house can contain this element.

Indium is a metal that has grown in importance since the 21st century. Lots of new technologies are based on its use, as it has the particular property of being transparent in thin coatings and still acting as an excellent conductor. The source of this raw material is not always easy to track. The indium market is very opaque.

[The report] is part of a fact-finding mission by the European Union project ‘Make ICT Fair’. It tries to reveal a considerable part of the supply chain of indium by starting its research in the very beginning of the chain: a few mining cooperatives on the Bolivian highlands extracting silver-lead-zinc polymetallic ore; and it traces the supply chain beyond, feeding the European industry.

Read the report


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