Europe

EU plan aims to restrict trade in gold used to fund conflict

European Union officials have announced a plan to restrict the trade of gold and other minerals used to finance armed conflicts.

An agreement reached Tuesday would require importers of gold, tin, tungsten and tantalum from anywhere in the world to verify that their suppliers meet EU standards starting in 2021.

EU trade commissioner Cecilia Malmstrom said the proposed rules are aimed at stopping "human rights abuses and armed conflict financed by trade in minerals" and expressed hope that other countries would follow suit. The U.S. passed similar legislation in 2010.

Rights group Global Witness cautiously welcomed the deal but criticized loopholes and exemptions.

The plan, negotiated by European lawmakers and European Commission officials, will go to the European Parliament and EU leaders for final approval.