Blood diamonds may get Hollywood attention, but it is the sourcing of lesser-known natural resources, known as conflict minerals, that fuel civil wars in the Democratic Republic of Congo and Uganda.

Conflict minerals (including tin, tantalum, tungsten and gold, among others) are core components in many high-tech products that consumers use every day, from smartphones and laptops to auto-mobiles and medical devices.

The sourcing of conflict minerals is a large and confusing issue for many companies but an increasingly important issue as legislative pressure around ethics and sustainability increases. Many of these companies are turning to new technologies to help them find a solution, realising that supplier value management and spend analysis tools can help them meet compliance regulations.

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