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From VOA Learning English, this is the Economics Report.
Western governments want to cut links between the conflict in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo and mineral exports. Both the United States and the European Union have acted to tighten control of their mineral imports to avoid fueling the conflict in eastern Congo. The United States Congress passed the Dodd Frank Act in 2010. The law deals mainly with financial rules. But it also includes a special requirement for American-listed companies. It says buyers of tin, tantalum, tungsten or gold need to show they have not supported conflict in Africa’s Great Lakes area. Now the European Union is also writing a bill to prevent deals that help private armies in eastern Congo. A delegation from the European parliament has been visiting Rwanda, Burundi and Congo to see how the proposed law would affect those countries. Judith Sargentini is leading the delegation. She says the European move is not a reaction to an increase in Chinese imports by companies that are not concerned about the Dodd Frank Act. But she says discussion of trade and raw materials is influenced by a fear in Europe that China will buy out everything. Critics say the Dodd Frank Act has reduced trade and jobs and led to the illegal transport of minerals through nearby countries. Ms. Sargentini says the EU legislation should have a different effect. She says it will reward businesses that make an effort to trade minerals fairly and openly. She says the EU trade commissioner wants to increase trade with Congo. Some Congolese experts say they think the Dodd Frank Act has helped cut the flow of money to militia leaders.