Mozambique launches second EITI reconciliation report

The Mozambican government has now concluded and launched the second Reconciliation Report on the payments made by extractive industries to the state, and the record of payments received.

The report covers the 2009 financial year, and has been drawn up to present the request to validate Mozambique’s request for membership of the Extractive Industry Transparency Initiative (EITI).

The report on payments the companies say they have made, and the revenue the government says it has received is a fundamental requirement for EITI membership. To this end, the government hired the consultancy company Ernst & Young to draw up the second reconciliation report, which was made public on Friday in the central city of Quelimane.

According to the ITIE national coordinator, Benjamin Chilenge, the government is very optimistic that Mozambique’s EITI candidacy will be accepted. Through membership of EITI, the government hopes that Mozambique will be recognised as complying with the rules of good governance in mineral resources.

Chilenge said that Mozambique is preparing to present the request to validate its candidacy, and the documentation could be submitted to the EITI International Committee at any moment.

“Arising from the new rules of the initiative, and following the publication of the second report, Mozambique can, before 15 February 2013, request revision of the validation process and be accepting as a compliant country”, he said. “We have begun the preparations for this request. Today we have published the report and we shall disseminate it throughout the country, while we gather all the documents required for requesting validation of our candidacy”.

Mozambique presented its candidacy to the EITI international secretariat in May 2009, and delivered the first report on the extractive industries in the country in February 2011.

But Mozambique’s candidacy to be recognised as country compliant with transparency in the extractive sector was rejected since it met only six of the 18 requirements for integrity required.

This rejection took into account the need for the government to follow international standards in “auditing the revenue from the exploitation of mineral resources and a clear definition of relevant payments and receipts”.

Participation by all the bodies that make or receive payments in the sector is also essential for Mozambique to be regarded as transparent in the extractive industries.

A further argument of the ITIE International Committee to justify rejection of last year’s request was the absence of information about petroleum and natural gas in the Mozambican report.

Thus in the second report the number of companies listed has increased from six to 36 and includes those operating in oil and gas.

According to the Deputy Minister of Mineral Resources, Abdul Razak, who is also chairperson of the EITI-Mozambique Committee, all the recommendations from the International Committee were accepted, and so he saw no further reasons for impeding the recognition of Mozambique as an EITI-compliant country.

“The aspects regarded as problematic have been solved, and the report was drawn up taking into account the new rules and the recommendations made so that the country could be considered as compliant with the initiative”, said Razak. “So this time there will be no reasons for the country not to be accepted”.

Post published in: Africa News

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