Extractive Industries Reporting Transparency Draws More Attention

In mid-June, the European Parliament voted in favor of new European Union transparency and accounting directives relating to payments by companies in the extractive industries to governments. At approximately the same time, separate announcements by Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper and by a working group that includes the Mining Association of Canada (MAC) and the Prospectors & Developers Association (PDAC) addressed the issue of reporting standards for Canadian extractive companies, with a view to enhancing transparency on the payments they make to governments.

The European Union directives create a binding legal requirement for EU-listed and large privately owned oil, gas, mining and logging companies to publish— country by country and project by project—all payments of more than €100,000 to governments wherever they operate. This brings the European Union in line with similar rules that take effect this year in the United States under the 2010 Dodd-Frank Act.

In Canada, Prime Minister Harper announced that the government of Canada intends to establish a new, mandatory reporting regime with a view to “improving transparency, ensuring Canada’s framework is consistent with existing international standards and aligned with other G-8 countries, ensuring a level playing field for companies operating domestically and abroad, enhancing investment certainty, helping reinforce the integrity of Canadian extractive companies, and helping to ensure that citizens in resource-rich countries around the world are better informed and benefit from the natural resources in their country.”

As featured in Womp 2013 Vol 07 - www.womp-int.com