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Volkswagen Joins Blockchain-powered Responsible Minerals Sourcing Group

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German car maker Volkswagen Group joined an industry consortium that will use blockchain technology for the responsible sourcing of strategic minerals which are used in the production of vehicles. The members can contribute and access immutable data in a secure and permissioned way to trace and record the flow of minerals across the supply chain in near real-time.

Other members in the blockchain network include Ford Motor Co., Huayou Cobalt, IBM and LG Chem along with co-founding responsible sourcing specialists RCS Global Group.

All participants in the network are validated by RCS Global Group for compliance with responsible sourcing standards.

Joining the consortium will help Volkswagen to gain provenance of cobalt used in lithium-ion batteries for their electric vehicles and other types of minerals used elsewhere in the production of their vehicles.

The network is built on the IBM Blockchain Platform, and powered by the Linux Foundation's Hyperledger Fabric.

The technology will support responsible sourcing standards developed by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and complement both current assessment and audit procedures. It will create a permanent record to help address compliance requirements.

Miners, smelters and consumer brands traditionally rely on third-party audits and laborious manual processes to establish compliance with generally accepted industry standards.

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