Just two nations pass the EITI’s latest testApril 2010
Only two countries met last month’s deadline for external verification of their progress on transparency under the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI).
The two-year deadline set in 2008 was met by only Azerbaijan and Liberia out of the 22 ‘candidate countries’ in the multi-stakeholder scheme. The pair have now been designated ‘EITI-compliant’.
Draft validation reports have been submitted by eight more countries, including Ghana, Kazakhstan and Nigeria, but five countries – Guinea, Madagascar, Sao Tome & Principe, Sierra Leone and Yemen – have not even started validation. Many others have requested extensions.
The total number of EITI countries has risen to 32. However, some of the world’s most resource-rich but corrupt nations have yet to comply with its requirements.
The EITI, which was established in 2002 to ensure revenue payments to governments from oil, gas and mining companies are fully disclosed to the public, says the deadline has ‘spurred activity to improve transparency’ in the countries concerned.
Others, however, feel the EITI should do more to bring the laggards up to standard. Radhika Sarin, an EITI board member and international co-ordinator of the Publish What You Pay campaign group, said: ‘The EITI is at a crossroads. The way its stakeholders handle this difficult situation is under great scrutiny.
‘Liberia was able to complete its validation process... due to support and ownership of the EITI at the highest levels. Similar levels of commitment are needed in all countries.’
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