The Swiss-based commodities company Glencore International PLC has rejected claims by two non-governmental groups that it profits from child labor and lax safety in Congo's small-scale copper mines.
Bread For All and the Swiss Catholic Lenten Fund say a Zambian subsidiary of Glencore buys copper ore from artisanal mines, including some in the Tilwezembe area where the Swiss company holds a concession.
Their report Monday claims the miners, who include children, are exploited by middlemen and work under dangerous and unhealthy conditions.
Glencore spokesman Simon Buerk says the company doesn't buy copper ore from the artisanal mines at Tilwezembe and takes measures to ensure none of it can enter its supply chain by other means.
The NGO report was produced in cooperation with the British Broadcasting Corporation.