US Sanctions: Step Forward to End Impunity for DRC’s Illicit Gold Trade

We applaud the recent action by the US Treasury Department to sanction Alain Goetz, the African Gold Refinery, and a network of associated companies.

IMPACT’s research has highlighted that urgent action is needed to end impunity for the worst offenders of Democratic Republic of Congo’s (DRC) illegal gold trade. Gold is smuggled over the border from DRC to neighbouring countries, and then sent onto international gold trading centres like the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

Our recent investigations into the illicit trade of gold from DRC and neighbouring countries has highlighted the role played by African Gold Refinery in Uganda, as well as Agor DMCC and Goetz Gold LLC in the UAE.

The sanctions from the United States are an important step forward in addressing IMPACT’s calls to end the impunity of illicit gold traders and ensuring conflict-free, responsible artisanal gold supply chains from DRC are viable.

All gold importing and producing countries, especially those where the sanctioned entities are located, must take immediate steps to investigate and take action against those engaged in the illicit trade of gold.

For a full list of recommendations to end the illicit trade of gold, please see: