Safeguarding REDD+ Finance: Ensuring transparent and accountable international financial flows
Funding forest protection in developing countries poses numerous financial risks: from inefficient allocation through to mismanagement of funds, misappropriation and corruption.
Financial flows from donors to developing countries under the REDD+ forest protection mechanism will need to increase significantly over the coming years if greenhouse gas emissions from forest loss are to be reduced. Detailed measures will be needed to ensure effective, transparent and accountable financial flows.
BP makes opaque payments for Angola oil block as petro-lobby seeks weak transparency rules
As oil industry lobbyists attempt to water down watershed transparency legislation in the United States and the European Union, Global Witness shows that BP has agreed to make multi-million dollar payments into obscure “social projects” controlled by the highly opaque state oil company of Angola as part of a deal to win oil exploration rights.
Read the full BP Angola briefing
Read BP's Letter to Gavin Hayman, Campaigns Director at Global Witness
Diamonds: A Good Deal for Zimbabwe?
Diamonds: A good deal for Zimbabwe? reveals that several directors of one of the largest mining companies operating in Zimbabwe’s controversial Marange diamond fields are drawn from the Zimbabwean military and police, and highlights the risk that off-budget funding of the security sector could be used to finance violence in any future election.
Rigged: The Scramble for Africa's Oil, Gas and Minerals
The intensifying competition for commercial access to the world’s remaining deposits of oil, gas and minerals brings with it a serious risk of exacerbating corruption and violent conflict. Our new report shows that in Angola and Nigeria there is a risk that complex deals struck between governments and corporations for access to natural resources could be used corruptly to benefit vested interests in these countries, rather than the citizens. The report also points to major concerns over opaque sales of mining assets in the Democratic Republic of Congo to offshore companies.
READ THE PRESS RELEASE
READ THE REPORT
Read the "Citizens checklist" aimed at preventing corruption in the award of oil, gas and mining licences.
Global Witness chapter for European Commission report: What are the risks for investing in REDD+ countries?
In recent years, new and significant amounts of money have been committed by the international community in an effort to reduce deforestation and forest degradation in developing countries (REDD+). This paper explores how REDD+ will work only if it is designed with human rights, political and financial risks in mind and with appropriate mitigation strategies.
In recent years, new and significant amounts of money have been committed by the international community in an effort to reduce deforestation and forest degradation in developing countries (REDD+). While this new investment provides an unprecedented opportunity to bring about significant and long-lasting social and environmental benefits to the forest sector, it is accompanied by a commensurate level of risk. Some risks are financial in nature, including theft and corruption, that could see funds diverted from their intended target and into private hands.
Forest Carbon, Cash and Crime
Corruption in the forest sector has until now been overwhelmingly linked to logging, both illegal and legal, which in many countries has led to significant depletion of valuable tropical forests. But today incentive mechanisms such as REDD+, intended to compensate governments, communities or other groups in developing countries for reducing forest loss, are beginning to change the face of corruption in the sector. While corruption and illegality in logging continue to be a significant international problem, the potential for future REDD+ earnings is bringing about new corrupt practices. This briefing paper maps out potential areas for corruption and illegality under the REDD+ mechanism and draws some initial recommendations for donors and policymakers.
Read executive summary of this report in Chinese
Curse or Cure? How oil can boost or break Liberia’s post-war recovery
International oil companies such as the US giant Chevron are beginning exploration off of Liberia’s coastline. However, this new report by Global Witness and Liberian Oil and Gas Initiative (LOGI) suggests that the war-ravaged country must implement urgent reforms to the functioning of its oil sector or risk any benefits being lost to the corruption and resource-fuelled instability that has blighted the country’s recent history.
Curse or Cure? How oil can boost or break Liberia’s post-war recovery shows that even before a discovery is made, there are deep-seated problems in Liberia’s oil sector: government officials and at least one company have paid bribes, contracts have been awarded illegally and companies with little experience in the oil sector have received concessions.
Read press release
Pandering to the loggers - Why WWF's Global Forest and Trade Network isn't working
WWF’s flagship scheme to promote sustainable timber – the Global Forest and Trade Network (GFTN) – is allowing companies to reap the benefits of association with WWF and its iconic panda brand, while they continue to destroy forests and trade in illegally sourced timber, a new briefing by Global Witness reveals. While GFTN is intended to reduce and eliminate such practices over the first 5 years of membership, systemic failures blight the scheme’s ability to deliver for forests. This briefing, outlines the main problems and proposes recommendations.
Read press release
Read Pandering to the Loggers
Beyond the Pledge: International Engagement After Sudan’s Comprehensive Peace Agreement
With only days before South Sudan is due to secede on 9 July, Sudan is the closest to war that it has been since the signing of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) between North and South Sudan in January 2005, said a global coalition of NGOs. In a new report published today, “Beyond the Pledge: International Engagement After Sudan’s Comprehensive Peace Agreement”, a coalition of 22 civil society organisations from Sudan, other African countries, Middle East, Europe and the US warn that Northern and Southern Sudan could slip into all-out conflict unless the international community adopts a more robust strategy of engagement, including targeted sanctions.
With only days before South Sudan is due to secede on 9 July, Sudan is the closest to war that it has been since the signing of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) between North and South Sudan in January 2005, said a global coalition of NGOs.
Congo's mineral trade in the balance: opportunities and obstacles to demilitarisation
Shifts in the control of eastern Democratic Republic of Congo’s (DRC) mines have created opportunities to begin breaking the links between the mineral trade and the conflict that has plagued civilians for over a decade. This report uses recent field research by Global Witness to highlight some significant changes and outline what the key players must do to capitalise on them. It says that while much of eastern Congo’s mineral trade remains under armed control, the departure of armed groups from Bisie - the region’s largest tin mine - is a promising development.
Read press release