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The Africa Steering Committee (ASC) of Publish What You Pay, which coordinates the work of 23 African coalitions, welcomes the proposals made by the European Commission (EC) last Tuesday October 25 2011 to introduce mandatory disclosure of all payments made to governments of countries rich in natural resources by listed and large private mining, oil, timber and gas companies.
The ASC fully supports these proposals and calls on the European Parliament and all the heads of state of the EU to adopt strong and effective final rules which will provide citizens of resource-rich countries an important tool necessary for the fight against corruption and embezzlement of public funds.
The final rules should fully define the data that will be subject to disclosure including a strong definition of ‘project’ and remove any provisions that exempt companies (listed and unlisted) from the requirement to publish country by country and project by project payments to African governments. We support this initiative and encourage the EU to include the disclosure of other information about profits, sales, production levels, production costs and reserves that would allow us to evaluate if our country is receiving an equitable transaction from the exploitation of our natural resources. In addition, for maximum effect, we urge the EU to consider the publication of contracts and licenses on the basis of which certain fees are calculated and certain exemptions are granted to companies.
Such improvements will have the advantage of contributing to the establishment of fair and innovative legislation that would give African citizens the information needed to move towards comprehensive transparency and accountability of extractive industries while at the same time creating a safe environment for investors and lasting peace for resource rich African countries.
In addition, this legislation will strengthen the implementation of the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative in our countries and encourage other African countries to join the process.
The Africa Steering Committee of Publish What You Pay believes that only a fair distribution of profits between companies and the African people will ensure justice for all and sustainable use of natural resources for the benefits of citizens in Africa.
Accra, 28 October 2011
For the Africa Steering Committee:
Steve Manteaw, Chairman & Gilbert Maoundonodji, Vice-Chairman
The Africa Steering Committee of Publish What You Pay was set up during the last Africa Regional Meeting in Kinshasa in May 2011. Its main function is to represent the African constituency of the PWYP campaign at continental and international levels. The mandate of the ASC encompasses three main roles: a) to lead on advocacy with African and international institutions; b) to ensure the adoption and implementation of a protection strategy for African campaigners; c) to ensure that the principles of PWYP are enshrined in the African campaign and guide the practices of national coalitions.
The members of the first Africa Steering Committee are:
• Steve Manteaw (Ghana), Chairman – Stevemanteaw@yahoo.co.uk
• Gilbert Maoundonodji (Chad), Vice-Chariman – email@example.com
• Mamadou Taran Diallo (Guinee) – firstname.lastname@example.org
• Bubelwa Kaiza (Tanzania) – email@example.com
• Hannah Koranteng (Ghana), EITI Board member – firstname.lastname@example.org
• Jean Claude Katende (DRC), EITI Board Member & Protection and Prevention Committee – email@example.com
• Ali Idrissa (Niger), EITI Board Member & Prevention and Protection Committee – firstname.lastname@example.org