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Novice and junior miners struggle to raise traditional debt capital when acquiring or developing a mine. However, the successful implementation of a variation on the streaming contract theme provides an interesting alternative for miners lacking the requisite balance sheet capacity to attract traditional debt finance. This form of alternative financing can ensure that junior miners have sufficient cash upfront to acquire, operate and generate profit from a mine. As such, the possibility arises that the ideals laid out in the Preamble of the Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act can be realized, specifically that the minerals of South Africa can be used as vehicle for socio-economic upliftment.

In this article, we will discuss the underpinnings of the European Union’s ambitious plan, the “European Union Green Deal”, an agenda to advance the sustainability of member economies and have far-reaching implications for Asia Pacific and Thailand in particular. Given the stringent environmental, sustainability, and other regulatory standards in the EU Green Deal’s Sustainable Products Initiative, it is essential that businesses in Asia Pacific monitor the targets and ambitions of the EU Green Deal to be prepared to comply with higher standards for imports into the EU.

At the UN Climate Change Conference in Glasgow known as COP26, countries agreed to advance the implementation of the Paris Agreement and accelerate its action plans to cut global greenhouse gas emissions. Along the line of this endeavor, the Prime Minister of Thailand, Prayut Chan-o-cha, announced Thailand’s enhanced ambition towards a low carbon society, aiming to reach carbon neutrality in 2050, and Net Zero GHG Emissions in or before 2065.

In this update, we set out the extent to which new Swiss ESG reporting, disclosure and due diligence requirements apply to Swiss companies and foreign companies operating in Switzerland. We also provide further details about the due diligence requirements in relation to conflict minerals and child labor, and give an overview of developments outside of Switzerland that are relevant for Swiss companies doing business abroad, including the recently proposed EU Directive on Corporate Sustainability Due Diligence and the German Supply Chain Act. Finally, we share some of the key points senior leadership should consider as extended ESG reporting and due diligence obligations take shape in Switzerland and abroad.

As part of the measures to help ease the impact of the rise in fuel prices, the Cabinet, on 29 March 2022, approved, in principle, the reduction of the contribution rate to the Social Security Fund. This new measure, once the regulations are issued, will reduce the monthly contribution rates of employers and employees from 5% to 1% of wage applicable for three months starting from May until July 2022, to help reduce the cost of living for employees and costs for employers through the SSF system.

On 23 February 2022, the European Commission gave the green light to the proposal for a Directive of the European Parliament and of the Council on Corporate Sustainability Due Diligence and amending Directive (EU) 2019/1937. The Proposal aims to promote sustainable business behavior with regard to supply chains, in particular activities affecting human rights and the environment. To this end, the Proposal introduces a legal obligation to conduct due diligence in the field of human rights and the environment.

At the UN Climate Change Conference in Glasgow known as COP26, countries agreed to advance the implementation of the Paris Agreement and accelerate its action plans to cut global greenhouse gas emissions. Along the line of this endeavor, the Prime Minister of Thailand, Prayut Chan-o-cha, announced Thailand’s enhanced ambition towards a low carbon society, aiming to reach carbon neutrality in 2050, and Net Zero GHG Emissions in or before 2065.

Following the government’s announcement of the creation of a new Future System Operator to oversee the UK’s energy system including emerging technologies and the arrival of the UK Energy Security Strategy, on 8 April 2022, the UK government published a package of proposals in support of UK hydrogen policy, including in particular a policy paper titled “Hydrogen Investor Roadmap: leading the way to net zero”. The paper reiterates the government’s pledge made in the Strategy to double its 5GW low-carbon hydrogen target to 10GW by 2030, with the intention that at least half of this production will come from electrolytic hydrogen. The paper aligns with the approach laid out in the Strategy to utilise excess offshore wind power to drive down hydrogen production costs.

On 7 April 2022, the Supreme Court of Justice of the Nation (SCJN) resolved the matter of unconstitutionality, filed by a parliamentary group of the Senate, against the modifications to the Electric Industry Law, published on 9 March 2021. The precedent created by the resolution of the unconstitutionality action by the SCJN, could be relied upon by the District Courts and the Collegiate Courts when ruling in amparo trials.