We believe that respect for human rights is an essential component of promoting sustainability in our global business. Our vision is to transition QIAGEN’s procurement towards leading practices by implementing global best-in-class procurement methods and standards in terms of processes and governance. This includes to ensure compliance with our mission “Making improvements in life possible” from which we derive our commitment towards sustainable practices and good corporate citizenship.
We expect our employees as well as our business partner to comply with national regulations and with the specifications of our compliance manual that includes provisions with regard to human rights issues. Responsibility for implementing and overseeing these issues is assumed by HR department and Procurement. Respect for human rights is part of our supplier code of conduct which contains binding rules for all suppliers. As part of our supplier selection process, we assess the suppliers’ policy with regard to human rights issues. In addition, first-tier suppliers have to confirm REACH, RoHS and SEC compliance as appropriate. Violations against human rights in our supply chain inherits reputational as well as legal risks for QIAGEN. Supplier audits are conducted if non-compliance is suspected. To our knowledge, there were no violations with regard to human rights in the reporting period.
Certain minerals (known as “conflict minerals”) have been linked with human rights abuses in the Democratic Republic of Congo and other conflict zones. QIAGEN has performed an extensive inquiry into the company’s supply chain to ensure that no conflict minerals from the Democratic Republic of Congo or adjoining countries are used in the company’s laboratory instruments.
Our products consist of sample and assay kits, known as consumables, and automated instrumentation systems. We do not believe that any Conflict Minerals are necessary to the production or functionality of any of our consumable products. We conduct due diligence measures annually to determine the presence of Conflict Minerals in our instrumentation products and the source of any such Conflict Minerals. Because we do not purchase Conflict Minerals directly from smelters or refineries, we rely on our suppliers to specify to us their Conflict Minerals sources and declare their Conflict Minerals status. We disclosed our Conflict Minerals findings to the SEC for the calendar year ending December 31, 2016 on Form SD on April 24, 2017 and will provide updated disclosure to the SEC annually.