Anglo American and Jiangxi Copper Co., one of China’s largest copper producers, have signed a memorandum of understanding to work together to provide greater assurance on the way copper is mined, processed, and brought to market.

Anglo American said this is part of the company’s work with customers to create sustainable value chains beyond its own mining operations, recognizing consumers’ increasing expectations for sustainably sourced and supplied raw materials.

“We are developing a series of partnerships to shape a more sustainable and customer-centric value chain – one that meets consumer-driven demand for copper with demonstrably strong provenance credentials,” Peter Whitcutt, CEO of Anglo American Marketing, said. “That value chain begins with our portfolio of high-quality and long-life assets, now also including our world-class Quellaveco mine in Peru which began production in 2022.

“In line with our Sustainable Mining Plan goal to establish ethical value chains for our products, this collaboration aims to support Jiangxi Copper’s efforts to contribute to the Chinese industry’s long-term decarbonization goals and transition to a greener economy, as we work to provide materials solutions that are responsibly produced, sourced and delivered.”

China is the world’s largest copper-consuming nation, representing more than half of global demand for refined copper, fueled by traditional applications in construction, appliances and machinery as well as the fast-growing renewable energy and electric vehicle sectors, with copper expected to play a pivotal role in enabling the country’s own decarbonization progress.

“Jiangxi Copper is committed to green, sustainable and high-quality development,” said Chen Yunian, Deputy General Manager of Jiangxi Copper. “Through this cooperation with Anglo American, we will focus on advanced technologies and innovative applications of mining, processing and smelting, and promote the development of a sustainable and responsible copper supply chain with a focus on renewable energy utilization, energy conservation and emissions reduction.”

Anglo American’s managed copper operations in Chile – the Los Bronces and El Soldado mining operations and the Chagres smelter – were awarded the Copper Mark, the assurance standard for responsible production practices, in 2022.