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The USAID Zahabu Safi Project

Launched in December 2018, the USAID Zahabu Safi project is a five-year, $11.9 million program that builds on recent successes achieved by donor-funded initiatives to export responsibly-produced gold to jewellery buyers in North America and Europe. Its overall goal is to establish a viable, conflict-free, artisanal and small-scale mining (ASM) gold supply chain originating from eastern DRC.

The project’s three primary objectives are:

1- To increase demand for and co-investment in conflict-free, traceable, responsible ASM gold from eastern DRC;

2- To increase exports of conflict-free, traceable, responsible ASM gold from eastern DRC; and

3- To improve the commercial viability of ASM gold cooperatives.

Zahabu Safi is being implemented by Global Communities in partnership with Levin Sources and in collaboration with Better Chain and RCS Global Upstream Ltd. At Levin Sources, we are focused more specifically on mid- and downstream actors and working on trade facilitation.

How you can get involved

As a consortium, we work closely with the Congolese government and are developing partnerships along the length of the supply chain with cooperatives and exporters, refiners and downstream buyers of gold, especially in the jewellery and tech sectors. We aim to increase investment in the responsible gold supply chain with a view to making it commercially viable once the project funding has ended.

There are many ways to get involved with the project, no matter where you are along the ASM gold supply chain:

  • In September 2020, we launched a refiners’ community of practice to explore practical solutions that contribute towards setting up a commercially viable and responsible supply of gold from the DRC. The CoP is structured around feedback gathered from the eight organizations that have already signed up. You can email us if you’d like to join.

  • We are learning as we go from those who have experience along the supply chain. Levin Sources is carrying out ongoing analysis of barriers and incentives to the responsible trade along the length of the supply chain so is keen to speak to anyone who has experience to share.

  • The project is designed to bring in more project partners from the private sector to make it commercially viable in the long term. We are getting ready to launch a $1 million Responsible Gold Innovation Fund (RGIF). The fund’s objective is to incentivize and facilitate private sector investment in new supply chain models for responsible gold originating from the DRC. It also aims to pilot new approaches to scaling the export of responsible artisanal gold from the country by overcoming specific identified barriers. The fund will prioritize grants that support supply chain actors in their responsible business practices, opportunities for general co-investment to promote commercial viability of project-supporting supply chains, and economic development in ASM communities.

The latest Zahabu Safi insight

ASM Gold Can Change Lives for the Better

ASM Gold Can Change Lives for the Better

March 30, 2021, by The Zahabu Safi Project

Jewelers are increasingly aware that, if they can carefully select gold from responsible ASM sources,they can play a role in changing lives for the better, a new report by USAID's Zahabu Safi project shows.

L'Or ASM Peut Changer des Vies pour le Mieux

L'Or ASM Peut Changer des Vies pour le Mieux

March 30, 2021, by Le Projet Zahabu Safi

Les bijoutiers sont de plus en plus conscients que, s'ils peuvent sélectionner avec soin de l'or auprès de sources ASM responsables, ils peuvent jouer un rôle dans l'amélioration des vies, comme le montre le dernier rapport de Zahabu Safi.

How to formalize logistics in the eastern DRC ASM gold supply chain

How to formalize logistics in the eastern DRC ASM gold supply chain

December 14, 2020, by Rachel Brass, based on the Learning Brief by Adam Rolfe and Angela Jorns, drawing on original research from Cyril Jobard and Safanto Bulongo

Read our top line summary of next steps for contributing to the formalization of logistics solutions in the ASM gold supply chain in eastern DRC.

Facilitating access to international gold markets for Artisanal Gold Miners in Eastern Congo

Facilitating access to international gold markets for Artisanal Gold Miners in Eastern Congo

May 4, 2020, by Rachel Brass and Rosanna Tufo

Discover eight key learnings from our market analysis of ASM gold from Eastern Congo carried out as part of the USAID Commercially Viable Conflict-Free Gold (CVCFG) Project.

LSM and ASM relationships: from risk management to positive impact

LSM and ASM relationships: from risk management to positive impact

April 5, 2020, by Estelle Levin-Nally and Dr Fabiana Di Lorenzo

Read sector Insights into how LSM and ASM relationships could move beyond risk management towards positive impact and how donor-funded programmes could provide avenues for reduced-risk engagement with ASM by LSM companies.

La Covid-19 vide les poches des communautés de mineurs artisanaux et des provinces de l’Est de la RDC

La Covid-19 vide les poches des communautés de mineurs artisanaux et des provinces de l’Est de la RDC

October 19, 2020, by Safanto Bulongo

Une analyse des impacts de la Covid-19 dans le secteur de l’EMAPE en RDC.

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