Natural resources, such as oil, gas, metals and minerals, belong to a country’s citizens. Extraction of these resources can lead to economic growth and social development. However, when poorly managed it has too often lead to corruption and even conflict. More openness around how a country manages its natural resource wealth is necessary to ensure that these resources can benefit all citizens.
In most countries, natural resources below the soil and offshore are owned by the government. Establishing which resources the government has, and whether they can technically and commercially be extracted, are key activities prior to extraction. Transparency around these findings also benefit investment prospects.
EITI Reports often provide details on the country’s natural resources, differentiating between “possible”, “probable”, and “proven” reserves, and the definitions associated with these classifications. There are also a number of other sources for this data. These include the national mining or oil and gas regulator, the BP Statistical Review, the US Geological Service, the US Energy Information Administration, the International Energy Agency, the World Bank and the various international mining associations (e.g: World Gold Council, World Nuclear Association among others). See links below.