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The movie « Dirty Gold War » by Daniel Schweizer, another attempt to cast shadows on the Swiss Gold industry

Neuchâtel (Switzerland) - June 8, 2015

Since last week we are seeing a number of press articles published by Swiss newspapers as well as radio interviews echoing the last movie made by Daniel Schweizer “Dirty Gold War”. This is part of the campaign to promote the movie, that will be projected by the Swiss cinemas as from this week on.

Mr. Schweizer however, is presenting an image of the gold industry and in particular of the Swiss gold refiners, including our company Metalor, that is very far away from the factual reality. Starting with a manichean and populist approach of the good people against the bad guys, and the small and vulnerable against the big and rich multinationals, he is passing the message that the gold is always a dirty business, mainly fuelled by an industry that is everything but transparent, especially in Switzerland. Very false and misleading message that shows a lack of knowledge on how the vast majority of Swiss gold refiners work, and in particular Metalor.

What Mr. Schweizer does want to ignore is that Metalor is subject to the supervision of the Swiss Financial Regulatory Authority (FINMA) in terms of Anti-money laundering, which means a very tight control of Metalor activities with very demanding yearly third party audits, all of them successfully passed. Equally, that Metalor is as well certified by International Organizations such as Fairmined, Fairtrade, LBMA (London Bullion Market Association) or RJC (Responsible Jewelry Council), which validate on regular basis, again through independent third party audits, that the company do respect human rights, labour rights, environmental impact, sustainable mining practices, etc., wherever it operates all the way through its supply chain. This is the result of years of hard work and cooperation with those international bodies and NGOs. For sake of transparency the outcome of those certifications are publicly available in our web site. Talking about lack of transparency as pretended by the Swiss director is absolutely false and misleading.

In terms of the origin of the gold, certainly the one refined by Metalor is not “dirty” gold at all. Our supply chain does require the identification of the source of the gold and furthermore the fact as to whether or not the mine from where the gold mineral is extracted is duly licensed according to local laws. In absence of that we do not take any gold mineral whatsoever. Furthermore, we monitor our suppliers, including regular site visits by Metalor staff, which are supplemented by site reports from the transportation companies we use to get, custody and shipping the mineral. This process is then audited by the above mentioned international organizations.

Metalor is fully aware of the challenges of doing business in some regions, but despite of them Metalor remains committed to do business in line with its standards, the ones of the international associations such as LBMA and RJC and the local regulations, respecting in any case human rights. Furthermore, and in this sense, Metalor is acting per OECD recommendations for industry to contribute positively to the development of the small scale mining sector as we are doing by supporting organizations in this area (such as the Swiss Better Gold Initiative and Fairmined).

We regret that Mr. Schweizer has decided to present an image that not only disregards the facts and the work done by Metalor and others in this industry but that provides a very distorted image that damages the reputation of Switzerland, our industry and customers and the people proudly working for it.


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