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Report / Oct. 16, 2015

How to lose $4 billion

Credibility test for global transparency standard as £4bn lost to anonymous oil and mining companies.

This report reveals how oil and mining assets worth a staggering $4bn have been allocated to companies whose ownership is obscure. In Nigeria, Democratic Republic of Congo and Angola, lucrative oil and mining licences were awarded to companies with hidden owners, diverting vast resource revenues to unknown private pockets. In a fourth country, Republic of Congo, a company whose beneficiaries remain uncertain – and which has historical connections to high ranking public officials - has recently received lucrative stakes in several oil fields. These deals deprive states of revenue that should be spent on education, health care and basic services for some of the most impoverished people on the planet.

The report comes ahead of a pivotal meeting of the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI), a global standard that promotes greater transparency throughout the value chain in the oil, gas and mining industries. At a meeting in Berne on 21-22 October 2015, the EITI International Board will decide whether to make disclosure of the true owners of oil, gas and mining companies a requirement on all 48 countries involved in the initiative.

It is now time for the EITI to show leadership and follow through on its commitment to shine a light on anonymous oil, gas and mining companies. 

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