The Australian Government works with multilateral organisations, other government agencies, non-government organisations, universities and the private sector to assist partner governments to maximise the development potential of their extractives sectors. Our activities focus on strengthening the capacity of governments in resource-rich developing countries in the Indo-Pacific region.
Below is an overview of global initiatives currently managed by DFAT. The overall budget estimates for Australian support to the extractives sector includes global, regional and country-specific initiatives. Additional information is available on relevant country and regional program pages.
Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI)
Australia is one of the largest and longest-serving donors to the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI). We have committed more than AUD20 million in funding since 2007 through a range of global, regional and bilateral aid investments to support the governance and implementation of EITI. Australia's current support is principally provided through the Extractives Global Programmatic Support Multi-donor Trust Fund; our contribution to EITI International Secretariat ($350,000 annually 2017-2020) and through the Natural Resource Governance Institute. Our support through the IMF Topical Trust Fund on Managing Natural Resource Wealth (MNRW TTF) also provides complementary support.
The EITI assists countries to gain the maximum benefit from their resource wealth by promoting structures for open and accountable management of natural resource revenues. It is an international coalition of governments, multilateral organisations, companies and civil society. Countries implementing the EITI Standard publish reports reconciling the monies companies pay with those received by governments. There are currently 51 EITI implementing countries including several countries in our region: Indonesia, Mongolia, Myanmar, PNG, Philippines, Solomon Islands and East Timor.
On 6 May 2016, the Australian Government announced it would implement the EITI domestically. By joining the EITI, Australia ensures that its domestic approach is consistent with international efforts to increase transparency, including in tax systems. This will provide significant benefits for Australian companies through improved global investment conditions resulting from consistent and open reporting standards for the world's resources sector. The Department of Industry, Innovation and Science is leading Australia's domestic implementation in collaboration with DFAT.
Extractives Global Programmatic Support (EGPS) Multi-donor Trust Fund
$11 million, 2015-2020
The EGPS Multi-donor Trust Fund seeks to improve the ability and capacity of current and emerging resource-rich developing nations in using their oil, gas and mineral resources sustainably and transparently for poverty alleviation, shared prosperity, economic diversification, and sustainable economic growth. The EGPS Trust Fund is anticipated to reach USD35 million by the end of the year, with pledges made by eight donors to date: Australia, Canada, EU, Finland, Germany, Norway, Switzerland and UK. Australia is the largest donor.
Previous support was provided through the EITI Multi-Donor Trust Fund and the Extractive Industries Technical Advisory Facility; both closed at the end of 2015.
EGPS supports a wide range of projects across the extractive industries value chain. It supports transparency and governance, legal and regulatory reform, local economic diversification, institutional strengthening and social and environmental sustainability. An estimated 75% of projects are broadly supporting EITI implementation. For example, EGPS has supported the Africa Mining Legislation Atlas (AMLA). This project has:
- trained 44 African law students, 20 women and 24 men, from 17 countries some of whom are beginning to work, publish, and serve as opinion leaders in the sector.
- supported the online publication of all 53 mining codes ensuring free access in searchable and downloadable formats (at www.a-mla.org), with an average of 500 unique visits monthly.
IMF Topical Trust Fund on Managing Natural Resource Wealth
$5 million, 2011-2017
The IMF Topical Trust Fund on Managing Natural Resource Wealth (MNRW TTF) delivers technical assistance to resource-rich developing countries for improved macroeconomic and fiscal management. Australia provided $5 million to the USD 25 million Phase 1, which ended 30 April 2017. Other donors to the fund included the European Commission, Kuwait, the Netherlands, Norway, Oman and Switzerland. Technical assistance was provided through the MNRW TTF Phase 1 under five areas:
- extractive industries fiscal regimes;
- extractive industries revenue administration;
- macro-fiscal policy and public financial management specific to resource-rich countries;
- natural resources-related financial asset and liability management; and
- statistics for natural resources, complementing the implementation of EITI.
26 countries have benefited to date including numerous countries in Africa and the following countries in the Indo Pacific: Indonesia, Laos, Mongolia, Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands, and Timor-Leste.
MNRW-TTF Phase 2 was launched by the IMF on 14 June 2016. Australia is currently finalising its support for this second phase.
Natural Resource Governance Institute and Transparency International
$2.5 million, 2015-2017
The Natural Resource Governance Institute (NRGI) helps people benefit from their countries' oil, gas and mineral wealth by promoting accountable and effective resource governance. Formed from the merger of the former Revenue Watch Institute and the Natural Resources Charter, NRGI focusses on bringing a strong evidence base for the field via data, research and analytical work. Working with civil society, governments, parliament, private sector and media, NRGI enables reform dialogue and constructive policy advocacy. Through this initiative, NRGI seeks to expand extractives transparency in Indonesia, Myanmar and Mongolia.
This initiative also includes support to Transparency International Australia ($300,000) to increase transparency and regulation in awarding mining permits, licences and contracts, which is co-founded by the BHP Billiton Foundation. The DFAT funded Transparency International chapters include Niger, Kenya, Mongolia, Cambodia and Indonesia.
The Kimberley Process
The Kimberley Process (KP) is a joint government, industry and civil society initiative to stem the flow of conflict diamonds – rough diamonds used by rebel movements to finance wars against legitimate governments.
Australia is currently the sixth largest producer of diamonds by weight and value in the world. Australia is the Chair of the KP in 2017.
Voluntary Principles on Security and Human Rights
The Voluntary Principles (VPs) are a set of guidelines that provide a practical human rights framework for the security operations of companies working in the mining, oil and gas industries. They are a useful risk management tool that increases companies' competitiveness while advancing human rights.
Australia is an active member of the Government Pillar. Australia released its National Plan for the Voluntary Principles in 2016 and will work with other government departments, industry and civil society to implement the plan.