04 Jul 07 - A focus on revenue transparency in extractive industries

Oil RefineryThe Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) was recently endorsed by the Group of Eight in Heiligendamm. UNCTAD also supports the EITI and is happy to co-host a half-day seminar in Geneva on 6 July, to encourage more companies and Governments to commit to the process.

UNCTAD and EITI will host a half-day seminar on Revenue Transparency and Natural Resources Extraction at the Centre International de Conferences, Geneva.

Oil refinery
Oil, gas and mining are critically important economic sectors in more than 50 developing countries. Properly managed, revenues ought to serve as a basis for poverty reduction, economic growth and sustainable development. But inadequate governance and lack of accountability in the use of natural resource revenues keeps countries - that ought to be prospering from these resources - poor.

The EITI was first launched in 2002. Since then it has grown into a global coalition of a wide range of governments, companies and investors and civil society organisations working to ensure that oil, gas and mining activities contribute toward development and do not become what is sometimes called a resource curse.

What is required?

Revenue transparency in extractive industries requires that:

  • Governments provide basic information about their revenues from natural resources
  • Oil, mining and gas companies publish information about payments made to governments.

Chuquicamata, the largest open pit copper mine in the world, Chile
Photo Credits: Reinhard Jahn
The international community has taken its first steps towards recognising the importance of improved transparency and accountability of natural resource revenues.
  • Some twenty countries have either committed to, or are now actively implementing EITI-in Africa, Asia, Europe, and Latin America.
  • The question of poverty and energy were on the agenda of the G8 in June this year.
  • The Government of Azerbaijan has declared its intention to table a UN General Assembly Resolution later this year that expresses support for the EITI.

The half-day seminar will provide an opportunity to review progress of the EITI to date, discuss challenges ahead and explore efforts that can help ensure that local populations benefit more from what are after all their mineral assets.



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