G8 Summit Urges Oil, Mining Sector To Disclose Revenues, Payments

By Agence France-Presse Leaders from the Group of Eight industrialized nations announced a pilot scheme June 2 to encourage oil, gas and mining industries to take voluntary steps to disclose revenue flows and payments in their sector. G8 heads of state and government said in a statement that under the plan, companies would disclose the information to the International Monetary Fund or another independent third party. The data would then be published "in accessible and understandable ways, while protecting proprietary information and maintaining contract sanctity." Corporate ethics advocates have urged complete transparency with regard to extractive industry payments in developing nations, which they say has been hampered because of confidentiality agreements built into most such contracts with host governments. The measures targeting extractive industries also include a commitment to pursue programs with participating governments "to establish high standards of transparency with respect to all budget flows . . . and with respect to the awarding of government contracts and concessions," the G8 statement said. The proposals formed one part of a declaration aimed at fighting corruption and improving public transparency. It called for urgent progress on improving public financial management and accountability, and urged the private sector to "develop, implement and enforce corporate compliance programs" on foreign bribery. The G8 groups Britain, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Russia and the United States. Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2003

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