Sustainable Procurement

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Conflict Minerals in Epson Products

Epson's Policy on Conflict Minerals

Epson's procurement policies are designed to develop mutually beneficial trusting relationships with its business partners around the world based on the concepts of fairness, coexistence, transparency, and co-prosperity. Epson has thus committed itself to maintaining high ethical standards and a social conscience, and has declared that it will conduct its procurement activities in strict compliance with both the letter and spirit of laws and regulations in every country and region in which it operates.

Epson considers the conflict mineral problem to be a major issue in terms of socially responsible procurement. Consequently, we do not use conflict minerals, as they are tied to human rights abuses, environmental destruction, and the funding of armed groups in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and adjoining countries.

Epson takes the following actions to exclude conflict minerals from Epson products.

  1. We ask our suppliers to read and follow the Procurement Guidelines and the Epson Supplier Code of Conduct. We take additional opportunities to explain and gain their understanding with regard to actions we take to keep conflict minerals out of our products.
  2. Epson is not required to report to the US Securities and Exchange Commission about the use of conflict minerals, as defined in the final rules of Section 1502 of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act ("Dodd-Frank Act"). However, we do survey our supply chain using a tool provided by the Conflict-Free Sourcing Initiative (CFSI), a group that is working with enterprises to promote responsible mineral procurement. If, in the future, a more effective means of carrying out due diligence on conflict minerals is established, we will adopt it and ask our suppliers to do so as well.
  3. Epson requires its supply chain to provide proof of compliance that minerals are procured only from smelters and refiners that have been found to be compliant with the Conflict-Free Smelter (CFS) Program of the CFSI.

Main Initiatives to Date

  • In September 2012 we asked our suppliers to abide by a clause concerning responsible mineral procurement that we added to the Epson Supplier Code of Conduct, which is found in our Procurement Guidelines.
  • In September 2013 we set up a cross-organizational Conflict Minerals Review Committee made up of personnel from all Epson's operations divisions and from the procurement departments of Epson Group companies. Organization and administrative oversight is provided by the Seiko Epson Head Office department that supervises socially responsible procurement. Under the direction of the Committee, Epson has switched from a passive to a proactive approach to conflict mineral surveys.
  • In the 2013 fiscal year we conducted conflict mineral surveys using the CFSI template for the main products in every business of every business segment.
  • In the 2014 fiscal year we expanded the conflict mineral surveys to include all companies from whom we purchase production materials--approximately 950 suppliers around the globe--and had a 96% response rate. However, despite analyzing survey answers and performing due diligence, we were unable to determine whether minerals were procured from sources not engaged in conflict.
  • We asked suppliers to understand and cooperate in our responsible mineral procurement efforts at a meeting held in April 2015 to brief them about Epson's procurement policies.

Initiatives in 2015 and Beyond

We found from the surveys performed to date that there is room for improvement in terms of answers to survey questions. In the 2015 fiscal year we will continue to survey suppliers, mainly those who supplied problematical answers, those who responded that they were unable to identify all smelters, and those who are new for us. We at Epson will continue our efforts to deepen supplier partnerships, improve the accuracy of survey answers, raise the rate at which smelters/refiners are identified, and increase supply chain transparency.

Going forward, we, along with our suppliers, will seek to help curb human rights abuses in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and adjoining countries by continuing to pursue initiatives that are designed to exclude conflict minerals, profits from the sale of which are used to fund armed conflict, from Epson products.