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Myanmar EITI Annual Activity Report

July 2014- July 2015

Tuesday, November 24, 2015 - 21:45

Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative

EITI-logo.svg

Logo of EITI

Abbreviation

EITI

Motto

Seeing results from natural resources

Formation

17 June 2003

Products

EITI Standard

Membership

48 countries

Official language

EnglishFrench,Russian

Chair of the Board

Clare Short

Head of the International Secretariat

Jonas Moberg

Website

eiti.org

The Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) is an international organisation which maintains a standard, assessing the levels of transparency around countries’ oil, gas and mineral resources. This standard is developed and overseen by a multi-stakeholder Board, consisting of representatives from governments, extractives companies, civil society organisations, institutional investors and international organisations.

EITI Standard is implemented in 48 countries. It consists of a set of requirements that governments and companies have to adhere to in order to become recognised as 'EITI Compliant'.

The Chair of the EITI is Clare Short, former UK Secretary of State for International Development. The former Chair of the EITI wasPeter Eigen. The EITI International Secretariat is located in Oslo, Norway and is headed by Swedish former diplomat Jonas Moberg.

Contents

  [hide

History[edit]

The “Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative” (EITI) was first launched in September 2002 by UK Prime Minister Tony Blair at the World Summit on Sustainable Development in Johannesburg,[1] following years of academic debate, as well as lobbying from civil society and companies, on the management of government revenues from the extractive industries. In particular, the EITI is an answer to public discussions around the “Resource Curse” or the “Paradox of Plenty”. NGOs such as by Global Witness and “Publish What You Pay”, as well as companies such as BP pushed the UK government to working towards an international transparency norm.[2]

The organisation was founded at a conference in London in 2003. The 140 delegates[3] from government, companies and civil society agreed on twelve principles[4] to increase transparency over payments and revenues in the extractive sector. A pilot phase of the EITI was launched in Nigeria, Azerbaijan, Ghana and the Kyrgyz Republic. The management of the Initiative continued to lay with the UK Department for International Development.

The second EITI Conference on 17 March 2005 in London established six criteria based on the principles. These set out the minimum requirements for transparency in the management of resources in the oil, gas and mining sectors, laying the foundation for a rule-based organisation. This conference also established an international advisory group (IAG) under the Chairmanship of Peter Eigen to further guide the work of how the EITI is to be set up and function.[5] More countries, companies and civil-society organisations joined the initiative. The International Monetary Fund and the World Bank endorsed the EITI.

The report issued in June 2006 by the international advisory group recommended the establishment of a multi-stakeholder board and an independent secretariat, and these were set in place at the third EITI conference held in Oslo, Norway on 11 October 2006.[6] Oslo was chosen as the new location for the secretariat.[7]

In the following years the body further fleshed out the criteria, turning them into a set of 23 requirements, known as the EITI Rules . These were adopted as the EITI Board was renewed in on 2 March 2011 at the fifth conference in Paris, France. Clare Short was appointed as the new Chair of the Board.[8]

The EITI Standard replaced the EITI Rules[9] on 24 May 2013. The new standard contains new disclosure requirements.[10]

Structure and Funding[edit]

The EITI is organised as a non-profit association under Norwegian law.[11] It has three institutional bodies: The Members’ Meeting, the EITI Board, and the International Secretariat. The Members’ Meeting governs the EITI and convenes alongside of the EITI conferences, which are held every two to three years. The board is the executive body and is supported by the secretariat.

 

Former EITI head Peter Eigen and current EITI head Clare Short in 2011.

The EITI Board meets three times a year and is composed of three groups: countries, companies and civil society. The membership of the board reflects the multi.stakholder nature of the EITI. The board has seven committees to assist on selected issues on a more regular basis.

The funding of the EITI is two-fold. Countries can ask for financial assistence from a trustfund managed by the World Bank for the costs associated with implementing the EITI Standard in their country. This fund is supported by 15 donor partners.[12] The operation of the EITI is carried out by the secretariat and funded by supporting governments, companies and civil society.[13]

The EITI Standard[edit]

The EITI Standard is an international standard that ensures transparency around countries’ oil, gas and mineral resources. The EITI Standard provides the requirements and guidance on how to report activity in the oil, gas and mining sectors and ensures that this information is available to the public. The Standard also covers areas such as license transparency, transit and state oil sales.

Member countries[edit]

Any country with extractive industry sectors can adhere to the EITI Standard. Countries implementing the transparency standard include OECD states such as the US and Norway, as well as countries in Latin America, Africa, Central and East Asia.[14]

In total 48 countries apply the transparency standard to the management of their natural resources.

When a country intends to join the EITI Standard, is required to undertake four sign-up steps before applying.[15] These include a clear statement of the government’s commitment, developing a work plan that sets objectives for what the country wants to achieve with the EITI, and establishing a multi-stakeholder group together with companies and civil society.

Once the application of the country has been accepted by the board, the country is called a “candidate”. It then has two and a half years to fulfil the seven detailed requirements of the EITI Standard. The candidate country then undergoes a comprehensive examination called “validation”. If it passes the assessment, it is declared “compliant” by the board.[16]

Twenty-nine countries are considered "Compliant countries":

The following 17 countries are "Candidate countries":

The Democratic Republic of Congo, which was suspended as a Candidate country in 2013 for insufficient reporting, independent audits and monitoring, was given Compliantstatus in July 2014. Other countries, such as Germany, France and Australia have shown interest in implementing the EITI.[17]

Supporting Companies[edit]

Around 90 companies involved in oil, gas, and mining support the EITI.[18] Supporting companies publicly endorse the EITI and can contribute to covering the cost of the international secretariat of the EITI.

The EITI is furthermore endorsed by over 95 institutional investors with total assets under management of more than US $16 trillion.[19]

Extractive companies are involved on the national level in countries implementing the transparency standard. They are part of the stakeholders and are required to hand over numbers on payments as part of the reporting process under the EITI standard. Company advocacy has resulted in several countries beginning EITI implementation.

Criticism[edit]

Campaigning organisations have criticised the organisation for the lack of sanction possibilities.[20] Business representatives have commented that the EITI board is captured by civil society organisations.[21] The EITI has been seen as insufficient to bring full transparency to payments in the extractive industries, since it does not cover countries active in commodity trading.[22] The body's credibility was questioned after it permitted an Ethiopian application for membership in 2014.[23] EITI has also been criticised for ignoring the violations of human rights[24] in Azerbaijan, and for not reacting sufficiently strongly to the harassment of Azerbaijani civil society groups that are part of EITI's multi-stakeholder approach.[25]

References[edit]

1.    Jump up^ "Statement of Principles and Agreed Actions, EITI" (PDF). UK Web Archive. UK Government. Retrieved 1 September 2014.

2.    Jump up^ "History of EITI". Retrieved 1 September 2014.

3.    Jump up^ "Final attendee list, Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) London Conference 17 June 2003" (PDF). http://collections.europarchive.org. DFID, UK. Retrieved1 September 2014.

4.    Jump up^ "Statement of Principles and Agreed Actions, EXTRACTIVE INDUSTRIES TRANSPARENCY INITIATIVE (EITI) London Conference, 17 June 2003" (PDF).http://collections.europarchive.org. DFID, UK. Retrieved 1 September 2014.

5.    Jump up^ "History of the EITI"www.eiti.org. EITI. Retrieved 1 September 2014.

6.    Jump up^ "The EITI Oslo Conference: Making transparency a global norm". Retrieved 1 September 2014.

7.    Jump up^ "Norway to host EITI international secretariat"http://www.regjeringen.no/en/archive.html?id=115322. Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

8.    Jump up^ "PRESS RELEASE: Six more countries compliant with transparency and accountability standard". Retrieved 1 September 2014.

9.    Jump up^ Dawson, Stella (March 1, 2013). "EITI board raises bar on global standards to report natural resource revenues". Thompson Reuters Foundation. Retrieved 1 September 2014.

10. Jump up^ "Charting the next steps for transparency in extractives"EITI. Retrieved 1 September 2014.

11. Jump up^ "EITI Articles of Association".

12. Jump up^ "Abstract - EITI Multi-Donor Trust Fund (MDTF) annual report 2013 (English)".

13. Jump up^ "EITI - How we are funded".

14. Jump up^ "EITI Countries".

15. Jump up^ "FAQs for governments considering EITI implementation"eiti.org.

16. Jump up^ "EITI Validation"eiti.org.

17. Jump up^ http://eiti.org/countries/other

18. Jump up^ "Stakeholders"eiti.org. Retrieved 3 September 2014.

19. Jump up^ "Investors' Statement on Transparency in the Extractives Sector"eiti.org. Retrieved 3 September 2014.

20. Jump up^ "Extracting oil, burying data" (Feb 25th, 2012). The Economist. Retrieved 3 September 2014.

21. Jump up^ "Comment - Beyond transparency: EITI stretches 'civil society' role". Oil & Gas Journal. Retrieved 4 September 2014.

22. Jump up^ "Rohstoffhandel blüht gleiches Schicksal wie den Banken". Tagesanzeiger online. 2014-08-25. Retrieved 3 September 2014.

23. Jump up^ Biron, Carey L. (21 March 2014). "In Accepting Ethiopia, Transparency Group 'Sacrifices Credibility'"Inter Press Service. Retrieved 21 March 2014.

24. Jump up^ "Extractive Industries: A New Accountability Agenda". Human Rights Watch. Retrieved 2014-08-25.

25. Jump up^ "Azerbaijan: Transparency Group Should Suspend Membership". Human Rights Watch. 14 August 2014. Retrieved 25 August 2014.

External links[edit]

• Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative website

• EITI and Sustainable Development, IIED

Authority control

 

Categories

 

Tuesday, November 24, 2015 - 21:30

Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) History and implementation in Myanmar

It has been controversial whether natural resources are a “curse” or a “blessing”. Although some resource rich countries benefit, others lose despite the richness of natural resources. Natural resources generally provide for economic growth and development in some countries such as Norway or Botswana, while many countries are cursed by natural resource wealth especially in developing countries. Consequently, the phenomenon of resource curse was becoming stronger and stronger. This phenomenon also entered into academic discussions. Many scholars argued that resource abundance combined with poor institutions leads to the resource curse, and socioeconomic development does not occur automatically although a country has an abundance of resources. The academic literature and research suggested that promoting the transparency in revenue in the resource sector is a starting point to overcoming the resource curse.  Various non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and civil society organizations (CSOs) stepped up a “Publish What You Pay” (PWYP) campaign, promoting the disclosure of the amount of payments made by extractive companies, including tax paid to the government. But extractive companies are concerned about the risk on competition among companies and investors, by disclosing data and information of their extractive operations. In September 2012, the UK Prime Minister, Tony Blair, initiated the idea of transparency in extractive industries in his speech at the World Summit on Sustainable Development in Johannesburg. Later, the UK government brought global stakeholders from civil society, companies and government representatives to discuss a reporting standard, to implement transparency in the extractive sector.

Twelve EITI principles and criteria were agreed at a conference in London in June 2003 to increase transparency of payments and revenues in the extractive sector and to contribute to better natural resource governance. Accordingly, the EITI source book was produced in 2015, which provides the guidelines on how to produce the reports for transparency. Later, the international advisory introduced the EITI validation guide, which set out the indicators for EITI implementing countries, the EITI criteria and principles. In 2006, the EITI international secretariat was established to provide oversight and support to the EITI implementing countries. 

EITI implementation has two core components: 

Transparency: oil, gas and mining companies disclose their payments to the government, and the government discloses its receipts. The figures are reconciled by an Independent Administrator, and published in annual EITI Reports alongside contextual and other information about the extractive sector. 

 Accountability: a multi-stakeholder group (MSG) with representatives from government, companies and civil society is established to oversee the process and communicate the findings of the EITI Report, and promote the integration of EITI into broader transparency efforts in that country

EITI aims to defeat the resource curse and bring benefits to the country for economic growth and poverty reduction through transparency and accountability. EITI implementing countries are needed to publish extractive companies’ payment to government and government’s receipt from extractive companies, and identify the discrepancy between the revenue government received and the companies’ payments made to government, to ensure all revenue from the extractive sector goes to the national budget without any loss. In addition, the government needs to publish the contextual information of extractive industries along the value chain of extractive industries, in accordance with the EITI standard.    

In order to implement this, the collaboration of government, civil society and companies needs to be established, via a “multi-stakeholders group (MSG)”, to oversee the implementation, through a dialogue process among stakeholders. The MSG dialog platform is where trust can be built among stakeholders for solutions, information shared and views/idea exchanged, and consensus-based decisions made.  An EITI champion of the country is also needed to identify the support (especially political support) of the MSG for EITI implementation.    Up to 2015, there are 48 EITI member countries, (16) candidate countries and (28) compliant countries. Three ASEAN countries have implemented EITI and Myanmar is one of them.

In July 2012, in an interview with the UK Financial Times, President U Thein Sein stated “We are preparing to be a signatory to the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative to ensure that there is maximum transparency in these sectors and try to make sure the benefits go to the vast majority of the people and not to a small group. The most important thing is to have completely transparent financial accounting to ensure that everyone knows where the revenues from these extractive industries are going.” During a visit by the EITI International Secretariat to Nay Pyi Taw on 16 July 2012, the government confirmed its intention to implement EITI. In December 2012, President Thein Sein issued Presidential Decree 99/2012 which formally established EITI and states the government’s intention and commitment to implement EITI. In December 2013, President Thein Sein said “we want to use the EITI to ensure that resources are developed and managed in a transparent manner for the sustainable benefit of our people.  Becoming a member of EITI will be a tangible result from these reforms.”[2]

 

The first “large multi-stakeholder meeting” was held in December 2013, during a visit to Myanmar by Ms. Clare Short, Chair of the EITI international board, and the composition of MSG membership was agreed. In February 2014, the Myanmar Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (MEITI) MSG was established officially according to the notification of the Myanmar EITI leading authority, chaired by a Union Minister of the President's Office.  The MEITI-MSG is composed of 21 members, including 6 key government representatives, 9 CSOs representatives and 6 private sector representatives, and led by the Chair of MSG and Vice Chair of MSG (see below). 

 

Myanmar EITI key stakeholdersThe MEITI- MSG approved the Myanmar EITI application and submitted it to the EITI international board on 7 May, 2014. On 2 July, 2014, at the EITI international board meeting, Myanmar was admitted as a candidate. According to EITI international board decisions, Myanmar needs to produce its first EITI report by January 2016 and to complete EITI validation processes by an independent validator by late 2017.

 

Initially, MEITI MSG had agreed to look at the oil, gas sector and mining sectors for possible Myanmar EITI scope, and recruit an international independent administrator to define which companies and government entities should be included and disaggregate levels for payment streams. 

Milestones of EITI in Myanmar

 

Year

Month

Activities

2012

December

Presidential Decree 99/2012 established the Leading Authority and committed the government to working with the private sector and CSOs for implementation of EITI.

2013

April

The Leading Authority issued a letter committing the government to work with all stakeholders and establishing the government ‘working committee’ for the purpose of EITI implementation.

May

MEITI team and stakeholders attended EITI Global Conference, Sydney – May 2013

August

The first meeting of CSOs and the government about EITI was held on 2nd August at Myanmar Insurance Enterprise in Yangon.

October

The first meeting of the government and private sector at Myanmar Insurance Enterprise in Yangon.

A wide range of private sector representatives attended, including representatives from both the international and national oil, gas and mining sectors (e.g. Wanbao, MFMA, Petronas, MPRL, Total, Chevron, Shell)

November

The first workshop bringing all stakeholders from every state and region in Myanmar, including representatives of CSOs, the government, parliaments, and the private sector, was held on 16-17 November in Nay Pyi Taw.

November

On 18 November, a large multi-stakeholder meeting was held in Nay Pyi Taw at which Union Minister U Soe Thane, the champion of the EITI which Senior Minister U Soe Thane reconfirmed the government’s commitment to work with CSOs and companies to implement EITI.

December

EITI Chair the Rt. Hon. Clare Short’s visit on 9-10 December

She also met the President U Thein Sein during her visit.

2014

February

The Leading Authority’s formal notification establishing the MSG (18 February 2014)

May

Submission of Myanmar EITI Candidacy Application (7 May 2014)

July

Myanmar became an EITI Candidate Country (2 July 2014)

October

Myanmar hosts the 28th EITI Board Meeting on 14-15 October and the Natural Resource Governance was held after the Board Meeting in Nay Pyi Taw.

2015

January

The EITI Secretariat Unit was established under the Budget Department of Ministry of Finance.

May

Mandalay Region Sub-National Unit was successfully formed.

July

Magway Sub-National Unit was successfully formed.

June – current

Scoping Study is being conducted to identify the scope for the Myanmar EITI 1st Report.

 

Tuesday, November 24, 2015 - 21:30

Myanmar Extractive Industries and EITI

Myanmar's natural resources include gems, industrial minerals, proven oil reserves of 50 million barrels and proven gas reserves of 10 trillion cubic feet (US Energy Information Administration). According to the Central Statistical Organisation, gas accounted for 29% of exports and gemstones 10% of exports in FY March 2013 – March 2014 and the extractive sector is the second largest source of foreign direct investment. The Central Statistical Organization reported total sales of gas in an amount of US $3.3 billion in 2013-14, up from US $580 million in 2003-04. Official revenues from gem stones sales in 2014 were estimated at US $3.4 billion (Myanmar Gems Emporium). Despite its mineral wealth, Myanmar is one of the least developed nations in the world, facing considerable challenges with managing its natural resource wealth.

The reform process initiated by President Thein Sein is continuing at a high pace, including in the extractive sector. The recently completed onshore and offshore oil and gas bidding rounds will see several international oil and gas companies entering the scene. Legal reforms are underway in the mining sector with a view to amend the current fiscal framework. EITI is a central part of the government’s reform agenda, in particular on public financial management reforms, and should provide access to reliable data about extractive industry revenues in a country where these figures still remain largely unknown. EITI is also seen as a tool for contributing to building trust between the government and communities and contribute to the peace process.

EITI Reporting

The country has not yet produced an EITI Report.

EITI Implementation

Myanmar was accepted as an EITI Candidate at the International EITI Board meeting on 2 July 2014. For more detailed information about their application process, please see Myanmar's Candidature application with annexes.

Since achieving Candidate status in July 2014, four MSG meetings have been held. Three sub-committees have been established to take forward the work on reporting, outreach and communications, and workplan and governance. Progress is being made on agreeing the scopeand Terms of Reference for the first MEITI EITI Report, which will cover data from financial year March 2013-March 2014. The report will be produced in accordance with the EITI Standard. Thescoping study which is being undertaken to prepare for the report will include an assessment of the feasibility to disclose contractual terms relevant to the EITI, explore mechanisms for disclosure of the beneficial owners of extractive companies operating in Myanmar, an overview of artisanal extractive activities and an overview of CSR programmes.

MEITI is also giving priority to outreach and awareness raising on natural resource governance and the EITI in the states and divisions where extractive activities are taking place. To this end, MEITI is establishing subnational coordination units in four pilot regions - Mandalay, Magway, Rakhine and Shan.

Read more

National Coordinator

Zaw OO

Myanmar

National Coordinator

Myanmar EITI

+951-654770

Contact

International Secretariat

Dyveke Rogan

Myanmar

Policy and Regional Director

EITI International Secretariat

+47 21 68 53 84 / + 47 90 79 79 37

drogan@eiti.org

Sam Bartlett

Myanmar

Technical and Regional Director

EITI International Secretariat

+47 9026 7530

sbartlett@eiti.org

 

 

Tuesday, November 24, 2015 - 21:00

History of EITI

In the late 1990s and early 2000s, there was an expanding library of academic literature around the resource curse by such acolytes as Jeffrey Sachs, Joseph Stiglitz, Terry Lynn Karl and Paul Collier detailing how the huge potential benefits of oil, gas and mining were not being realised and were associated with increased poverty, conflict and corruption. The problem went beyond just the well-known economic phenomenon of 'Dutch Disease' by which natural resource wealth made other export sectors uncompetitive. Other common effects were around the capturing of the revenues by elites, the stunting of the development of tax systems to capture revenue from non-extractive sectors, exacerbated regional and community tensions. These writings outlined out the complexities of the governance of extractive resources – from bidding, exploration, licenses, contracts, operations, revenues, supply chains, local content, transit, services, allocations, and spending. They noted environmental, social and political concerns. They each outlined remedies for addressing the curse, often noting that no single action would be capable of tackling all these challenges. However, the literature was clear – transparency and dialogue had to be part of the starting point.

Publish What You Pay and the Launch of the EITI

These academic analyses were followed by more and more journalistic pieces and a growing campaign by Global WitnessHuman Rights WatchOxfam America, other civil society organizations. International financier George Soros established a “Revenue Watch” programme under his Open Society Initiative, to investigate the flow of funds from oil companies to governments in the Caspian region. The NGOs were stepping up their enforcement of corporate social responsibility rhetoric and were looking for a law for companies to report their payments to developing countries. The civil society campaign slogan of “Publish What You Pay” (PWYP) was drawn from a Global Witness report, “A Crude Awakening”. Launched in December 1999, it focused on the opaque mismanagement of oil in Angola. The report had concluded by calling on the operating companies to adopt “a policy of full transparency [in] Angola and in other countries with similar problems of lack of transparency and gov­ernment accountability”.

Responding to the campaign in February 2001, BP published the signature bonus of US $111 million it paid to the Angolan government for an offshore license. It committed to publish more. This sparked a strong reaction from Angola. In his 2010 memoir, “Beyond Business”, Lord John Browne, the then Chief Executive Officer of BP, recalled how he received a cold letter from the head of the Angolan national oil company, Sonangol, stating that, “[I]t was with great surprise, and some disbelief, that we found out through the press that your company has been disclosing information about oil-related activities in Angola”. The backlash and threats from the Angola government, led Lord Browne to conclude “Clearly a unilateral approach, where one company or one country was under pressure to ‘publish what you pay’ was not workable”.

The oil companies argued for a shift away from company reporting, as sought by PWYP and others, to reporting by governments, in order to reduce conflict with host governments and put contracts at risk. If company reporting was to be required they wanted a global effort to level the playing field that required all companies in a country to disclose.

The UK government – the Cabinet Office, the Department for International Development, the Treasury, the Foreign Office, and the Department of Trade and Industry - was listening both to the Publish What You Pay campaign and to the oil companies. They saw the opportunity to develop an initiative built on the notion of equal transparency from the governments and the companies.

The EITI is often thought to have been launched in 2002. It is true that the then UK Prime Minister, Tony Blair, outlined the idea of the EITI in a speech intended for the World Summit on Sustainable Development in Johannesburg in September 2002. However, the problematic relationship between Prime Minister Blair and President Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe, meant that the British Prime Minister never actually delivered his prepared remarks as intended.

Bringing stakeholders to the table: agreeing the EITI Principles

Following the publication of the Blair speech, the UK Department for International Development (DFID) convened a meeting of civil society, company, and government representatives. There was agreement that some kind of reporting standard should be jointly developed. At a conference in London in June 2003, a Statement of Principles to increase transparency of payments and revenues in the extractive sector was agreed. These 12 EITI Principles centred on the need for transparent management of natu­ral resources. They affirmed that there was a belief that “a workable ap­proach to the disclosure of payments and revenues is required, which is simple to undertake and use”. Over 40 institutional investors signed on to a statement of support for the EITI which argued that information disclosure would improve corporate governance and reduce risk.

Following this meeting, a few countries, like Nigeria, Azerbaijan, Ghana, and the Kyrgyz Republic, explored how these principles might be applied. They were later joined by Peru, the Republic of Congo, Sao Tome e Principe, Timor Leste, and Trinidad and Tobago.

Transparency in natural resource development was championed at a series of G8 Summits – in 2003 in Evian, in 2004 in Sea Island, Georgia. The G8 subsequently, called on the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank to provide technical support to governments wishing to adopt transparency policies. This led to the establishment of the World Bank-administered Multi-Donor Trust Fund (MDTF) for the EITI in 2004. The MDTF has disbursed almost US $60 million in technical and financial assistance to EITI programmes in 37 countries.

Drawing from countries’ first experiences with EITI: The EITI Criteria

In March 2005, the EITI stakeholders and implementing countries again met in London for the Second Conference. UK Secretary of State for International Develop­ment, Hilary Benn, summarized:

Our experience in the four countries that have piloted EITI… is that while dif­ferent countries have taken different approaches to implementation, this needs to be backed up by clear international rules of the game for the initiative to be effective and credible.

These different approaches to the principles were boiled down to six EITI Criteria, which sought to establish “the rules of the game”. Benn also an­nounced the establishment of an International Advisory Group, which would include representatives of governments, companies, and civil soci­ety organizations, to take the EITI forward.

It became increasingly clear that the EITI was not evolving, as some had anticipated, into a voluntary corporate social responsibility standard for companies, but rather into a disclosure standard implemented by countries. The criteria focused on:

Regular publication of all material oil, gas and mining payments by companies to governments (“payments”) and all material revenues received by govern­ments from oil, gas and mining companies (“revenues”) to a wide audience in a publicly accessible, comprehensive and comprehensible manner.

They also recognized that civil society had to be actively engaged in the process to ensure accountability.

How the EITI works

Assessing transparency: EITI Validation

By the time of the third EITI Global Conference in Oslo in October 2006, the implementing countries (now joined by Niger and Cameroon) were preparing their first EITI reconciliationreports. Azerbaijan had al­ready produced reports covering revenue from 2003–2005 and Nigeria a report covering 1999–2004. Alongside the production of an EITI Source Book in 2005, which provided guidance on how to produce these reports, the International Advisory Group had sufficient emerging approaches to introduce the EITI Validation Guide, which set out the indicators that implementing countries had to meet in order to become EITI Compliant. The guide was introduced at the Oslo conference, effectively marking the end of the beginning for the EITI. The guide also included for the first time a formal process to sign-up to become an EITI “Candidate” country.

From 2002 to 2006, the EITI had been valiantly run by a small team in the UK Government’s Department for International Development, with little administrative capacity or political support. It was therefore also agreed at this time that the EITI should have its own gov­ernance structure: a Board, Secretariat, and a members’ Conference every two years to appoint the Board. Peter Eigen, co-founder and former Chair of Transparency International and hitherto the chair of the EITI’s Advisory Group, was appointed as the first chair of the Board. The EITI International Secretar­iat was later established in Oslo in September 2007 with Jonas Moberg appointed at its Head. After two terms of office, Peter stepped down as Chair and Rt Hon Clare Short was appointed as Chair in Paris at the Fifth EITI Global Conference in March 2011.

With the principles setting out its aims, the criteria containing its minimum requirements, and the guide establishing its indicators, it was thought that the EITI had a structure in place that would clearly frame the expectations of implementing countries. The EITI, in effect, had evolved into a collective governance standard. In February 2009, Azerbaijan became the first country to be compliant with this standard, and was soon followed by Liberia, Timor Leste, Nigeria and Ghana.

Making the EITI meaningful: the EITI Standard

It quickly became clear that many issues had been left open, such as how long implementing countries had before they had to meet the standard and how regular and timely the reporting needed to be.

So, in 2009 (Fourth Conference in Doha) and 2011 (Fifth Conference in Paris), the EITI Board issued versions of the EITI Rules. Replacing the EITI Validation Guide, these included six “policy notes” that provided further clarification and guidance. The “indicators” became “require­ments” and were addressed more as steps to be followed by implementers than as indicators to be assessed by external validators. The 2011 edition of the EITI Rules, for the first time, crucially included the need for the data to be both timely and regular.

Shortly after the 2011 Paris Conference, an evaluation of the EITI by Scanteam was published. The evaluation recognised exciting innovations from many of the implementing countries – eg. Liberia had included forestry and agriculture; Nigeria’s reports included physical and process audits, as well as financial audits; Ghana and Peru’s reports included data on the amounts paid to subnational levels of government, etc. However, Scanteam concluded that “little impact at the societal level can be discerned … largely due to [EITI’s] lack of links with larger public sector reform processes and institutions”. It found that EITI’s narrow focus was not systematically delivering on the Principles established in 2003. Following this, the Board and other stakeholders recognised that the EITI needed to do more to encourage countries to use the EITI as a platform for wider improvement of natural resource management.

The Board undertook an extensive strategy review to address three main challenges:

  • How to ensure that the EITI provided more intelligible, comprehensive and reliable information;
  • How to ground the process in a national dialogue about natural resource governance i.e. linking the EITI with wider government processes around tax collection, extractive policy and budget arrangements;
  • How to incentivise continuous progress beyond Compliance.

The resulting EITI Standard launched at the Global Conference in Sydney in May 2013 therefore sought to:

1) Make the EITI Reports more understandable

EITI reports were required to contain contextual information such as the contribution of the extractive sector to the economy, production data, a description of the fiscal regime, an overview of relevant laws, a description of how extractive industry revenues are recorded in national budgets, an overview of licenses and license holders, and a description of the role of state-owned companies. Countries were encouraged to publish contracts and details of the beneficial owners of companies.

2) Making EITI more relevant in each country

Countries were required to agree a work plan with objectives that articulated what they wanted to achieve with the EITI and set out how they wanted to achieve it. The scope of EITI implementation and links to other reforms had to be tailored to contribute to these desired objectives.

3) Better and more accurate disclosure

The Standard required for the first that EITI Reports disclose the payments broken down by each company, and by each revenue stream and, in due course, by each project. EITI reports were also be made available electronically and codified to allow for international comparisons.

4) Recognising countries that go beyond the minimum

The Standard introduced more frequent and nuanced validations to create incentives for more innovative use of EITI to the benefit of the country.

5) A clearer set of rules

The EITI Standard was restructured, in order to condense the previous 21 requirements and policy notes into a shorter and more concise seven requirements.

Over 40 coun­tries were implementing the EITI, with Colombia, France, Italy, Mexico, the United Kingdom, the United States, amongst others, preparing to begin implementation. Over 200 EITI reports had been published covering well over a trillion US dollars of revenues paid. While the International Secretariat has remained relatively small, with a staff of 18, over 400 people were working around the world on implementing the EITI.

In addition, various international institutions routinely cited their association with the EITI as evidence of their own commitment to good governance. The EITI’s tenets were reflected and exceeded in US, European, Nigerian and Liberian legislation, the World Bank’s International Finance Corporation’s standards for extractive projects, and an increasing set of country-level policies such as the publication of contracts.

Before 2013, the authors were worried that EITI was going to become irrelevant by simply focusing on revenue transparency when the debate had moved on. By 2014, the concern was that everyone was trying to hang everything on it, because the EITI was the only game in town. In many countries, it was beginning to play host to some topics had previously been considered politically taboo: beneficial ownership, production and consumer subsidies, the role and behaviour of state owned companies, secretive contracts, aggressive transfer pricing, non-payment of taxes, smuggling, fraud, etc. The debate had clearly shifted and transparency was no longer an aspiration. It was an expectation. And through collective governance, it was beginning to lead to accountability.

Conclusion

In little over a decade, the EITI has developed from a vague initiative, to a multi-country multi-stakeholder forum, to a global rules-based transparency standard, towards an accountability process with minimum requirements. Each stage represented an important step in the progression. This experience with the EITI is another reminder of the importance of collective approaches to governance. It took civil society organisations campaigning as well as engagement; it took company leadership; it took representatives from supporting countries such as the UK to provide facilitation; and finally and arguably most importantly, it took leaders from implementing countries to respond and take ownership.

It is a story of a moving consensus; learning and adaption; increasing confidence; and strong leadership. Most of all it has been a story of governance entrepreneurship.

Timeline

2014

March: The United States becomes the 44th implementing country. 26 countries are Compliant.

2013

July: UK launches EITI process and USA MSG held its first meeting.
June: World Leaders discuss the EITI during the G8 summit and commit to transparency: Italy and Canada announce its commitment to implement the EITI and Germany announces its pilot program.
June: Commonwealth Secretariat announces its support to the EITI.
May: Albania becomes the 20th EITI Compliant country.
May:  More than 150 fiscal periods covered in EITI Reports disclosing US$ 1 trillion revenues in 33 countries rich in oil, gas and mineralsTransparency is [now] becoming the global norm.
May: France and the United Kingdom declare of its commitment to transparency and the EITI at the 6th EITI Global Conference
April: EU reaches deal requiring EU companies to disclose tax payments.

2012

February:  Extracting Data provided a statistical overview of more than 70 EITI reports produced by 30 implementing countries in six years.

 

July:  10 years of EITI in Nigeria shows how the country has increased government take and shed light to important challenges in the governance of their oil and gas.

 

October: 100th EITI reconciliation report published.

2011

MarchClare Short is appointed as Chair of the EITI during the 5th EITI Global Conference in Paris. The 2011 EITI Rules were adopted.

March: Niger becomes a 10th EITI Compliant country.

SeptemberPresident Obama announces that the US will implement the EITIOpen Government Partnership program is launched.

OctoberAustralia announces that it will pilot the EITI.

2009

FebruaryAzerbaijan became the first EITI Compliant Country and Norway admitted as EITI Candidate Country during the 4th EITI Global Conference in Doha.

May: Four new countries were admitted as EITI Candidate Countries bringing total number of EITI implementing countries to 30.

December: 97 fiscal periods amounting US$ 200 billion of fiscal revenues covered in the EITI reports.

2008

February: Validation methodology agreed by Board at meeting in Accra, Ghana. The EITI welcomes seven new Candidate Countries.

2007

September: International Secretariat opens in Oslo with a 'Transparency Week'. 15 countries welcomed as EITI Candidate Countries.

2006

October: Following the International Advisory Group report irst international EITI Board is formed consisting of 20 members representing implementing countries, supporting countries, civil society organisations, industry and investment companies during the 3rd EITI Global Conference in Oslo. Peter Eigen is appointed as Chair of the Board.

DecemberOslo was selected as the location of the International Secretariat.

2005

March: International Advisory Group (IAG) formed to decide on the governance and future direction at the second EITI Conference.

June: EITI support and implementation recommended in the Commission for Africa Report at the G8 Gleneagles Summit.

2004

February: EITI Paris Implementation Workshop.

JuneEITI endorsed by G8 leaders at Summit at Sea Island.

2003

JuneEITI Principles agreed at the  first EITI Plenary Conference, Lancaster House in London.

2002

OctoberTony Blair announces the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative(EITI) at the World Summit for Sustainable Development in Johannesburg

 

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