Cobalt is a metal used in the development of electric cars as well as for lithium-ion batteries and other consumer electronics. However, by far the largest amount of cobalt in the world comes from Congo, a country that is tormented by violence and child labor.
Car manufacturers are therefore under pressure, the pressure exerted by the international community to avoid such “conflict minerals” obtained with the help of child labor. Blockchain technology offers the possibility to make these supply chains more transparent and to keep a close eye on them.
IBM, Ford, LG Chem, Huayou Cobalt, and RCS Global had already started the above initiative early this year. Volvo has now joined them and is the first manufacturer to complete the supply chain on the blockchain. The blockchain technology was developed by the American Oracle together with the British Circulor.
Doug Johnson-Poensgen, CEO of Circulor, however, says that blockchain technology will not be enough in itself:
No technology can completely replace due diligence. What it will do is improve standards enforcement by emphasizing when things don’t work as intended.