PH becomes a candidate for EITI
MANILA, Philippines – The Philippines has become a candidate for the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI), a seal of global approval that payments and receipts involving extractive industries — mainly mining – are properly disclosed.
In a press briefing on Wednesday, May 22, Deputy Presidential spokesperson Abigail Valte said the Palace was informed by Presidential Assistant on Climate Change Secretary Elisea Gozun that the Philippines’ candidacy was approved by the international board.
“We would like to congratulate those who have formed the multi-stakeholder group that will be working on this. We congratulate them for their hard work and candidate country na tayo for EITI,” Valte said.
EITI, launched by former British Prime Minister Tony Blair in 2002, is an international multi-stakeholder group that sets global standards for those involved in extractive industries by reporting how much the company pays while the government acknowledges how much its receives. The people of a country can then review the figures.
There are currently 37 countries participating in the EITI, 20 of which are already compliant and 17 are candidates.
By participating in the EITI and implementing internationally recognized transparency standards, will demonstrate the country’s commitment to reform and anti-corruption, Gozun said in a press conference in Malacanang last April.
Why join EITI?
Application to be part of the EITI has been on the drawing board since 2005, but the government pursued it only when Executive Order (EO) 79 of the government was passed in July 2012. The EO defines the specifics of the mining policy and mandating different mining stakeholders to pursue EITI accreditation.
The government plans to establish a multi-stakeholder group (MSG) that will oversee the implementation of the EITI.
Included in the tasks of the planned MSG is the crafting of a work plan that contains measurable targets, costs and timetable for the implementation of the country's transparency initiative.
This comes amid the efforts of the government to pursue a mining reform bill in Congress that will address issues about revenue sharing between the government and the mining operators. Finance Secretary Cesar Purisima said the mining reform bill will be a priority measure of the Aquino government in the next Congress. - Rappler.com