Validation

On 23 February 2016, EITI Board approved the 2016 EITI Standard with revised Validation procedures. An overview of the changes is available here, including a summary of changes to EITI Validation.

What is Validation?

Validation is an essential feature of the EITI process. It serves to assess performance and promote dialogue and learning at the country level, and safeguards the integrity of the EITI by holding implementing countries to the same global standard. It is intended to provide all stakeholders with an impartial assessment of whether EITI implementation in a country is in line with the provisions of the EITI Standard. The Validation report, in addition, seeks to identify the impact of the EITI in the country being validated, the implementation of activities encouraged by the EITI Standard, lessons learnt in implementation, as well as address any concerns stakeholders have expressed and recommendations for future implementation of the EITI.

All EITI countries have a Validation deadline. When the EITI Board accepts a country as an implementing country, it establishes deadlines for publishing the first EITI Report and undertaking Validation. An implementing country’s first EITI Report must be published within 18 months from the date that the country was accepted as an EITI country and Validation is required to commence within two and a half years of becoming an EITI country. Section 8 of the EITI Standard sets out the timeframes that implementing countries have to adhere to, and the consequences of noncompliance with the EITI Requirements.

Validation schedule and decisions

As of 13 January 2017, five countries have been validated and 16 are under way.

Find the full schedule and overview of decisions linked below.

Validation methodology

Validation assesses progress against the EITI Standard (set out in section 3 of the EITI Standard). The methodology is set out in the Validation Guide, with guidance on assessing each provision of the EITI Standard. In some cases, the Validation Guide specifies the evidence that the validator must use to ensure that a provision has been satisfied. In other cases, there are different approaches that a country might take to address an EITI provision, and the Validation Guide provides examples of the types of evidence that the validator might consider.

Validation procedures

Given the multi-stakeholder nature of the EITI and the importance of dialogue, the Validation procedures emphasise stakeholder consultation. Validation is carried out in four stages.

1. Preparation for Validation. Prior to the commencement of Validation, the multi-stakeholder group (MSG) is encouraged to undertake a self-assessment of adherence to the EITI Standard. The Validation Guide includes a provision that: “where the MSG wishes that Validation pays particular attention to assessing certain objectives or activities in accordance with the MSG work plan, these should be outlined upon the request of the MSG”. The national secretariat is requested to collate the documentation and other sources that demonstrate compliance, including MSG minutes. Stakeholders are also invited to prepare any other documentation they consider relevant. A guidance note on preparing for Validation is available.

2. Initial data collection and stakeholder consultation undertaken by the EITI International Secretariat. The International Secretariat reviews the relevant documentation, visits the country and consults stakeholders. This will include meetings with the MSG, the Independent Administrator and other key stakeholders, including stakeholders that are represented on, but not directly participating in, the MSG. The Board maintains a standardised procedure for data collection, addressing stakeholder consultation and deadlines for the completion of the initial assessment.

Based on these consultations, the International Secretariat will prepare a report making an initial assessment of progress against requirements in accordance with the Validation Guide. The initial assessment will not include an overall assessment of compliance.

The report is submitted to the Validator. The National Coordinator (NC) receives a copy. Comments on the facts are welcome but NC and the MSG are encouraged to defer any major commentary until they receive the Validator’s report.

3. Independent Validation. The EITI Board will appoint an Independent Validator through an open, competitive tendering process. The Validator will report to the Board via the Validation Committee.

The Validator assesses whether the Secretariat's initial assessment been carried out in accordance with the Validation Guide. This will include: a detailed desk review of the relevant documentation for each requirement and the Secretariat’s initial assessment of each requirement, a risk-based approach for spot checks, and further consultations with stakeholders. The Board may request that the Validator undertake spot checks on specific requirements.

The Validator comments on the Secretariat’s initial assessment and prepares a Draft Validation Report. The MSG is invited to comment on the Draft Validation Report. Having considered the MSG’s comments, the Validator compiles a Final Validation Report. The Validator writes to the MSG to explain how it has considered their comments.  The MSG receives a copy of the Final Validation Report.

The Final Validation Report will include the Validator’s assessment of compliance with each provision, but not an overall assessment of compliance. The Validator will be invited to present their findings to the Validation Committee.

4. Board Review. The Validation Committee will review the Final Validation Report and the supporting documentation (including the MSG’s comments). The Validation Committee will make a recommendation to the EITI Board on the country’s compliance with the EITI Requirements and, where applicable, any corrective actions required.

The EITI Board will make the final determination of whether the requirements are met or unmet, and on the country’s overall compliance in accordance with provision 8.3.a.ii of the EITI Standard.

The initial assessment, Validation Report and associated MSG comments are considered confidential until the Board has reached a decision.

For additional deatils, see the documents listed below.

Validation scorecard

The Board bases its decision on extensive assessments of the country's extractives sector. 

The colour-coded scorecard presents the progress made by countries to meet the requirements. It also presents an overview of the country overall status. The Validation Report and initial data collection provide the background on how each requirement was assessed.

Validation consequences

The outcome of Validation can have different consequences for the status of the country as member of the EITI.

The following figure illustrates the consequences of Validation results. It can also be found in the EITI Standard after requirement 8.8.

EITI Validation flow chart

You can find more information on the statuses of countries by following the link below.

Background to the changes to the Validation system

The first Validation Guide was published in 2006. The Validation procedure has since been updated and improved on a number of occasions. In 2015, the EITI Board conducted a review of the Validation process, including an extensive consultation process. At the EITI Board meeting in Berne in October 2015, the EITI Board agreed to conduct five pilot Validations (an example of the work done in Mongolia is available here). This led to the changes to the Validation system, as outlined above. 

For further information about EITI Validation, please contact Sam Bartlett at the EITI International Secretariat.