What is Better Gold?
The approach chosen by the SBGA is to:
- Accept only metal originating from accredited responsible ASGM sources
- Achieve shorter supply chains and facilitate direct exports for ASGM producers
- Mobilise actors along the supply chain to establish & improve efficiency of these
- Promote environmental and social improvements locally through the Better Gold Fund (BGF)
- Identify specific projects funded by members that allow faster ASGM operations’ improvement
The State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO) and the Swiss Better Gold Association launch the third phase of the Swiss Better Gold Initiative, a public-private partnership promoting responsibly extracted gold from artisanal and small-scale mines.
Anchored on solid results achieved over the first two phases, this new phase will aim to continue to scale up the initiative’s positive impacts on the ground as well as a gradual process of handing-over the responsibility to uphold achieved outcomes from the public to the private partner represented by the Swiss Better Gold Association.
The Swiss Better Gold Initiative was launched in 2013 with the aim of improving social and environmental conditions in artisanal and small-scale gold mining (ASGM) in Peru, Colombia and Bolivia. This new phase of the programme will be deployed from 2021 to 2025 and, in line with the aspiration to attain a higher development impact, will aim to reach out to other
jurisdictions through complementary activities. Further, it will also increase focus on transversal topics such as climate change, gender equality, and enhance knowledge dissemination on responsible ASGM mining.
Setting the scene for this continued public-private partnership, the State Secretary Marie-Gabrielle Ineichen-Fleisch, SECO Director and Director of the Foreign Economic Affairs Directorate, and Mr Olivier Demierre, the President of the Swiss Better Gold Association and Senior Vice President CSR at MKS PAMP, presented the third phase of this meaningful
collaboration. Ambassador Dominique Paravicini, Head of SECO’s Economic Cooperation and Development Division, Ambassador Ana Rosa Valdivieso Santa Mar a of Peru, as well as Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Colombia to the WTO at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Colombia, Santiago Wills, have expressed the importance of the programme.
“Switzerland is a major actor in gold worldwide, importing and exporting vast amounts of the metal every year. The reasons for Switzerland’s major role in global commodity trading can be traced to the country’s long tradition and to the favourable economic conditions it offers to businesses across all sectors. The Swiss Better Gold Initiative is one such measure. It is unique because it is neither a pure development project, nor a pure market approach project. It allows the creation of sustainable value chains from mine to market with a special focus on artisanal and small-scale mining,” notes Mrs Marie-Gabrielle Ineichen-Fleisch.
“The gold industry recognises supporting artisanal and small-scale gold mining as critical to responsible sourcing. To date, the Swiss Better Gold Association, with the support of the Swiss government and the Swiss gold industry, have been able to export more than 8,000 kg of responsibly produced Swiss Better Gold and generate over USD 5.6 million of impact premium for the benefit of participating ASGM producers. The Swiss Better Gold Association is delighted about the fast and positive growth of the initiative and looks very much forward to further expand its reach and support to ASGM producers’ continuous improvements,” adds Olivier Demierre.
To read the Press Release of the launch event in Bern, Switzerland, on September 6, 2021 , please click on the following LINK.