What is the focus of this GGA Programme?
Articles from this programme
Given the fragile socio-political and environmental context in which the extractives industry so often operates in Africa, transparency is an absolute necessity for companies if they are to be regarded as good neighbours, and avoid becoming embroiled in destructive conflict.
Governance matters: How can transparency lead to real accountability in the extractives sector in Africa
Extractive resources are different from other resources in many ways. To begin with, extractive resources (petroleum, minerals, etc.) are strategic and can even make advanced countries such as Japan depend on less developed countries like Angola and Algeria.
When oil, natural gas, or similar natural resources are discovered the expectation is that their exploitation will dramatically and materially benefit the population of the host country.
Tune in to our first vodcast of the campaign above, in which GGA SADC Executive Director, Chris Maroleng, hosts colleagues, Busisipho Siyobi (Lead Researcher, Natural Resource Governance Programme), and Dr Ross Harvey (Director of Research & Programmes).
As we gain better understanding of how the Resource Curse manifests in developing countries, we now pay close attention to the key mechanisms that drive the Resource Curse even deeper. Rent-seeking and patronage are among the key contributing factors to this wicked problem.
In weakly institutionalised contexts, natural resource wealth tends to be a curse instead of a blessing. Where citizens are relatively powerless to hold ruling elites to account, resource wealth undermines development prospects.
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Natural Resource Governance
Our Natural Resource Governance team is committed to reversing the ‘resource curse’ – the paradoxical relationship between natural resource wealth (minerals and hydrocarbons especially) and underdevelopment. It turns out that institutional quality is the key determining factor for resource wealth to translate into broad-based development. We therefore aim to build institutions underpinned by transparency and accountability in the extractives industry. To these ends, we advocate for the implementation of the Africa Mining Vision in each mining jurisdiction across the continent.
The programme ensures that the various disparate attempts at improving extractive industry governance on the continent are better coordinated to gain maximum traction. Our NRG team works closely with the GIA team to produce our monthly Intelligence Reports, as the mining industry is a key element of our target audience.
We specialise in enhancing Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) performance for mining industry and related firms doing business in Africa. We differentiate ourselves by not only providing ESG improvement insights but also by being an independent broker between the private sector and African governments.
Our NRG programme provides politically workable, regional solutions that connect mining with green industrialisation. The continent, on average, is facing ‘premature deindustrialisation’ and associated extreme youth unemployment. As new technologies associated with the fourth industrial revolution advance, mining will no longer be a large employer, and this poses significant governance challenges that we specialise in helping governments and firms to navigate.
New technologies allow for mining to be both safer and less environmentally invasive. This allows for higher margins, creating wealth that should serve as a catalyst for connecting mining to other sectors of the economy. These connected sectors can feasibly be developed to tap into global value chains, especially those that feed the fourth industrial revolution, and specifically the energy and transport revolutions within that domain.