Past the Tipping Point? Contract Disclosure within EITI
When governments and private sector companies agree to exploit publicly held natural resources, citizens have the right to know the terms of the resulting deals. These terms are contained in licenses, contracts, regulations and legislation. While regulations and legislation are usually public, licenses and contracts are not.
This report shows that it has become the norm among Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) implementing countries to disclose the contracts and licenses that lay out the terms for resource exploitation. Based on a review of 51 EITI implementing countries and one subnational region, we find that 29 EITI implementing governments – well over half – have disclosed at least some of these agreements, and several more are taking concrete steps to join their ranks.
The decision to disclose contracts or licenses demonstrates that governments and companies are increasingly finding that the benefits of contract transparency outweigh restrictive confidentiality concerns surrounding commercial sensitivity, trade secrets or intellectual property.