For the 3.5 billion people who live in countries rich in oil, gas and minerals, the extraction of those resources has the potential to generate large revenues to foster economic growth and reduce poverty. It has been recognised that, when governance is weak, the extraction of such resources can result in poverty, corruption and conflict. The EITI (Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative) aims to strengthen governance by improving transparency and accountability in the extractives sector.
As a global standard, the EITI promotes revenue transparency. It has a robust yet flexible methodology for monitoring and reconciling company payments and government revenues at the country level.
Each implementing country creates its own EITI process, which is overseen by a multi-stakeholder group with representatives from government, companies and national civil society. The international EITI Board and the International Secretariat, based in Norway, are the guardians of the EITI methodology internationally.
TI Australia and the TI movement support the EITI and Peter Eigen, founding Chair of TI, was the chair of the EITI Board until 2011. TI Australia joins with the TI movement globally as members of the Publish What You Pay movement, globally and in Australia. PWYP has more than 750 affiliates globally and is the principal civil society advocate for the EITI, seeking to widen and deepen its mandate and standards.
There are currently 36 countries implementing the EITI, 14 of which have been judged by the EITI Board as compliant with the rules and criteria after validation by an independent consultant to the Board. In our region, Timor Leste and Mongolia are compliant countries, and Indonesia, Solomon Islands and Afghanistan are implementing the EITI. Many of the 36 implementing countries are in Africa and Central Asia.
In 2011 the Australian Government announced its commitment to undertake a Pilot Implementation of the EITI. TIA is represented on the multi-stakeholder group overseeing the Pilot. Norway is the only developed nation implementing the EITI. In 2011 the USA announced its intention to implement the EITI.
The Australian Government is the leading financial supporter globally of the EITI. AusAID supports the World Bank’s Multi-Donor Trust Fund which provides support to EITI implementing countries, as well as to the EITI Secretariat.
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