This morning the 4th EITI Global Conference is set to begin. Participants have been arriving from several dozen countries, companies and civil society organisations. Several sessions will be taking place today, led by many of our partners including Revenue Watch Institute, Publish What You Pay, the Norwegian and German governments and Oxfam America with the Integrated Social Development Centre (Ghana).
The 4th EITI Global Conference ended on a high note with a large number of new endorsements and commitments. During the final session of the EITI conference all stakeholders were invited to address the assembly. A number of EITI candidate countries re-affirmed their commitment to implementing the EITI. H.E. Samir Sharifov, Minister of Finance Azerbaijan,the first EITI Compliant country, stated that "we are ready to share our experiences and expertise with other countries."
This morning's plenary session was opened by H.E. Abdullah Bin Hamad Al-Attiyah, Deputy Prime Minster and Minster of Energy and Industry, State of Qatar. His Excellency stated Qatar's belief that promoting transparency in the extractives industry is of paramount importance in ensuring that natural resources wealth is translated into economic and social development for resource-rich countries. He assured the session of Qatar's strong support for the EITI.
The first day of the EITI conference got off to a busy start with nearly 400 participants in attendance. During the 7th EITI International Board meeting held, the Board discussed whether to accept Azerbaijan as the first EITI Compliant country and the approval of Tanzania as a Candidate country.
The EITI Board agreed to admit Tanzania as an EITI Candidate country.