Last year, more people than ever could see how much their government received from their resources.
Last year, a record 26 countries published what their government had received from natural resources, 50% more countries than the previous record.
The almost ½ billion citizens in these countries can now see how much their government is being paid for extraction of their natural resources. These figures are informing the debate about how countries’ resources should be managed, such as in Nigeria.
It is almost ten years since stakeholders from government, civil society and extracting companies came together and agreed that “natural resource wealth should be an important engine for sustainable economic growth” in the EITI Principles.
"Transparency is becoming the global norm"
The Head of the EITI International Secretariat, Jonas Moberg, said in a comment:
“It is worth taking a step back and recognising how far we have come. The information published through EITI Reports used to be government and company secrets. Now the data is available in printed reports and online websites for the world to see. Transparency around these vast revenue flows is becoming the global norm.”
“The challenge for 2013 will be to ensure that the disclosed figures are scrutinised and used to improve accountability, public debate, and better management of natural resource wealth,” Mr Moberg added.
Currently 37 countries are implementing the EITI standard, which requires full disclosure of all payments to the governments from companies extracting oil, gas and minerals in the country. The disclosed data are independently compiled and reconciled, and published in an annual EITI Report.
To date, 32 governments have published resource revenues covering 159 fiscal years, totalling around US$1 trillion.
More countries set to disclose this year
In addition to the 26 countries that last year published revenues from 2010, some countries have disclosed their 2011 figures, including Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Mongolia, Norway, Congo,Timor-Leste.
Iraq, Peru, Mauritania, Mozambique, Tanzania and Zambia became EITI Compliant last year and another 12 of the remaining 19 Candidate countries are expected to complete EITI Validation, EITI’s quality assurance mechanism, in 2013.
In the near future transparency about revenues from natural resources will also be enforced in a number of other countries, such as the United States, Myanmar, Philippines, Tajikistan and Ukraine, which all have already announced their intention of implementing the EITI Standard.