Companies and other organisations making up a broad coalition have signed the Responsible Gold Agreement on International Responsible Business Conduct (IRBC) in the gold sector. The aim is to have a positive impact within the international gold chain and to reduce (potential) negative effects.

Steering Committee

The signatory parties have set up a Steering Committee to guide the implementation process. The members of the Committee represent the signatories to the Agreement. The Steering Committee is chaired by an independent chairman, Giuseppe van der Helm.

Members of the Steering Committee

Dirk-Jan Koch – Ministry of Foreign Affairs 
Joost Vos – Ministry of Foreign Affairs  
Chris Kuscher – Cookson Drijfhout B.V. 
Patrick Thio – Gold and Silver Federation
Mark van der Wal – IUCN Netherlands
Pauline Neefjes – UNICEF Netherlands 


Implementation of the Agreement is supported by a secretariat, which is accommodated at the Social and Economic Council of the Netherlands (SER) in The Hague. The Council also assisted in the negotiations that ultimately led to the Agreement. The secretariat supports the Steering Committee and the workgroups. 


The Dutch government has made funds available from the budget of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for implementation of the Responsible Gold Agreement; these funds will be available for the duration of the Agreement. In addition, the Council will also provide 20% of the necessary funding. The signatory parties are also contributing EUR 500 each, with an annual increase of EUR 50. 

Complaints and disputes committee

A complaints and disputes committee has also been appointed.