The illicit trade in diamonds has funded brutal wars and human rights abuses for decades. Despite significant progress, the problem has not gone away.
A Rough Trade
A seminal Global Witness report on the role of diamonds in funding the Angolan civil war.
Oil, Gas & MiningCampaign
Oil, Gas and Mining
Money from oil, gas and mining can help lift entire countries out of poverty in much of the developing world. Properly managed, it can build schools, hospitals and roads, and reduce dependency on international aid. But all too often, the revenue goes missing because deals are done behind closed doors, allowing small, corrupt elites to profit at the expense of ordinary citizens.
Oil, Gas & MiningStory
The Turn Towards Transparency
The global movement to end the corruption that has helped keep citizens in resource-rich countries poor.
Press Release / May 20, 2010
Goldman Sachs backs Angolan oil deal despite corruption risks
The investment bank Goldman Sachs is backing an oil deal in Angola by U.S. firm Cobalt International Energy, despite a risk that local partners in the deal could expose Cobalt to prosecution for corruption in the United States, Global Witness revealed today. Goldman Sachs is a major shareholder in Cobalt and two of its executives sit on Cobalt's board. Agreements with the Angolan state oil company, Sonangol, give Cobalt shares in two Angolan oil exploration blocks and assign it two local partners, Alper Oil Limitada and Nazaki Oil and Gáz S.A.1
Press Release / March 15, 2010
Link between Angolan president's son-in-law and state oil company raises questions about transparency
Sonangol, the state-owned oil company of Angola, nominated the son-in-law of Angola's President dos Santos to the board of a holding company that owns a third of the listed Portuguese oil firm Galp Energia, Global Witness has learned.
Press Release / Oct. 28, 2009
Global Witness welcomes French "Angolagate" verdict as victory for justice
A Paris court's decision to convict 36 people in connection to illegal arms sales to Angola during its civil war in the 1990s, including arms dealers, middlemen and French politicians, is a victory for the rule of law and Angolan victims of the conflict, Global Witness said today. "Justice has prevailed despite Angolan government attempts to stop the case," said Simon Taylor of Global Witness, which has been investigating corruption in Angola since 1999. The country is rich in oil but its people mostly live in dire poverty.
Press Release / Oct. 5, 2009
IMF risks condoning corruption with new loan to Angola
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) should not go ahead with plans for a multi-million dollar loan to Angola, whose oil-rich government is highly corrupt, without stringent conditions that require the opening up of the country's oil industry to public scrutiny, the anti-corruption watchdog Global Witness said ahead of the IMF's Annual Meeting in Turkey.
Press Release / Aug. 5, 2009
‘Resource Curse’ should be key focus of Clinton’s Africa visit
US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton should put a strong emphasis on how best to manage natural resource wealth and avoid conflict and corruption on her official tour of Africa this week, said campaign group Global Witness today. Among the seven countries she will visit, Angola, Liberia, the Democratic Republic of Congo, and Nigeria are key examples of how abundant natural resource wealth - such as oil, minerals, and timber - can be more of a curse than a blessing, causing or exacerbating conflict and corruption.
Press Release / Aug. 4, 2009
Private oil firm's shareholders have same names as top Angolan government officials
A private oil company in Angola, given permission by the state oil company Sonangol to bid for potentially lucrative oil rights, has shareholders with the same names as Sonangol's chairman and other top officials, Global Witness has learned. Angola is one of the two top oil-producing countries in sub-Saharan Africa but most of its people still live in dire poverty.