…as countries disclosed over $150bn in 2018
Efforts to tackle hidden ownership, corruption and mismanagement in the extractives advanced, as EITI countries raced ahead, with new laws, regulations and registers in Nigeria, Ghana, Kyrgyz Republic to name a few, the Chair of the global Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative Fredrik Reinfeldt, has said.
Speaking in his 2018 end of year message, Reinfeldt disclosed that over $150 billion in extractives revenues was disclosed by the EITI countries in total.
He said over half of EITI’s 51 implementing countries were assessed against the Standard, of which Colombia, Mongolia, Senegal and Timor-Leste reached the highest level of progress.
“At the national level, data disclosed by the EITI was analysed and used by civil society, governments, companies and media to challenge misconceptions, identify poor practices and encourage reforms for better governance of the sector,” Reinfeldt said.
“This multi-stakeholder, data-driven reform approach is what first attracted me to the EITI. We must remember that in an age of growing political polarisation, cross-sector partnerships that build trust and common understanding are a precious commodity,” he added.
Reinfeldt who joined the EITI in 2016, listed three trends which he believes will continue to shape the organisations work in the coming year to include, the Validation procedure which has demonstrated that data is increasingly being published online, in open data formats.
Second is the ripple effects of the implementation of the EITI Standard, as more disclosures embed good practices. “Notably, the EITI’s supporting companies voluntarily drafted and signed up to a set of expectations in 2018 to enhance their commitment to greater transparency. These commitments included full tax transparency, promotion of contract transparency in countries of operation, beneficial ownership disclosure, and due diligence down the procurement chain,” he said.
According to him, in the aftermath, Total became one of the first oil majors to announce that they would advocate countries for the public disclosure of their petroleum contracts and licenses, and Rio Tinto issued a transparency statement, amongst others.
He also noted that knowledge and expertise has deepened on frontier issues that are critical for the good governance of the sector such as beneficial ownership, contract transparency and project-level reporting as a major trend.
“The EITI is increasingly publishing data that can be used in conjunction with larger data sets. Powerful and sophisticated analysis is being conducted and, consequently, citizens are gaining more knowledge about who is operating in their sector, how much they are making and under what terms at the project level,” Reinfeldt said.