The Board discussions today were the culmination of two days of strategic discussions, committee meetings and extensive deliberations aiming towards one goal: to improve governance of the extractives in EITI countries.
Suriname captured the spotlight on day two as it was welcomed by the Board as the 52nd EITI implementing country. The Board also took key decisions on Liberia and Mali’s progress towards meeting the EITI Standard.
Adding numbers, adding value: Suriname becomes 52nd EITI country
If you want to go quickly, go alone. If you want to go far, go together (African proverb)
On 28 March 2017, Suriname submitted its candidature application to the International Secretariat to become an EITI member, to join 51 others in implementing transparency in the extractive sector. Today the EITI Board approved Suriname’s application, making it the seventh Latin American and Caribbean country to implement the EITI.
Fredrik Reinfeldt, Chair of the EITI, in welcoming Suriname as a new member of the EITI family hoped that “the EITI will help Suriname to ensure that its natural resources are used for the development of the country”.
On his part, the Minister of Natural Resources in Suriname, Hon Regilio Dodson, emphasised that the country aims to use the EITI to build trust and national consensus amongst stakeholders on how to develop their natural resource wealth to aid the development of its society and people.
He noted that Suriname will include disclosure on environmental impact and local development reporting as priorities, particularly regarding the indigenous people of Suriname.
Suriname is required to publish its first EITI Report within the next 18 months in accordance to the EITI Standard.
Board applauds meaningful progress in Liberia and Mali despite difficult times
Implementing the EITI isn’t easy. When faced with external challenges beyond national control, the opportunities for successful implementation become narrower.
Despite being hit by the Ebola endemic, Liberia has continuously safeguarded the implementation of transparency within the extractives. This was recognised by the Board as Liberia was found to have made meaningful progress against the 2016 EITI Standard. The Board noted the pioneering efforts done by the country and the role it has played in shaping the Standard.
In Mali, EITI implementation has proved resilient despite political instability and terrorist attacks. The EITI Board concluded that Mali has made meaningful progress in implementing the EITI Standard.
Both Liberia and Mali are expected to undertake some corrective actions before the second Validation commencing on 24 November 2018.
Until we meet again…
Close to 100 participants left the meeting with renewed commitment to the EITI’s continued progress towards extractive sector governance.
The Board will convene again in Manila on 23-24 October 2017. Until then, the members will participate in committees to discuss Validation assessments and ways to improve implementation of the global Standard for good governance of the extractives sector in EITI countries.
Image: Suriname Minister of Natural Resources, Regilio Dodson, speaks as Suriname is accepted as 52th member of the EITI. EITI International Secretariat, flickr