There is global consensus about the need to fight corruption within the extractives sector. The Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) has a renewed agenda to explore how member countries can use the EITI Standard to reduce corruption in the oil, gas and mining (‘extractive’) sectors.
Through the EITI, over 50 resource-rich countries have committed to disclosing information about their extractive sectors, including the licensing and contracts phase of the value chain which is a known hotspot for corruption. This discussion paper draws on the Transparency International Accountable Mining Programme’s assessment of corruption risks in the mining licensing process of five EITI member countries – Argentina, Ghana, the Kyrgyz Republic, Madagascar, and Mexico. The paper highlights key lessons for combatting corruption through effective implementation of the licence allocation disclosure requirements in the EITI Standard (Requirement 2).
Improving transparency is a necessary and important strategy for fighting corruption. However, as the country examples in this paper demonstrate, transparency alone is not sufficient to reduce corruption. To effectively tackle corruption, countries need to go beyond disclosing how the process works on paper to deal with the factors that make the licensing stage in mining vulnerable to corruption in practice.