Many African countries have received billons of dollars in revenues from oil and other natural resources over the last 25 years. Yet, the per capita income of most of these countries remains at less than $3 a day.
In many cases, the lack of accountability and transparency in the management of revenue exacerbates poor governance and often fuels cycles of corruption, conflict and poverty.
And the global demand for Africa’s resources is increasing. In response, Sub-Saharan Africa is increasing its output and by 2015 could supply America with one-quarter of its oil.
The challenge facing democrats in Africa is to prevent corruption in resource-rich states and fight authoritarian governments seeking to consolidate their power by controlling these resources.
In response to this problem, NDI is conducting a program aimed at strengthening transparency and good governance in resource-rich African countries. Specifically, the Institute is identifying effective policies and techniques for overseeing revenues from extractive industries and helping reformers in various countries develop strategies for increasing democratic oversight of these industries.
In countries where revenues and expenditures derived from natural resources are not transparent, NDI and its local partners are identifying the obstacles and publicizing the findings.
The African Extractive Industries program is currently active in Angola, Congo, Chad, Nigeria, Sao Tome & Principe, Sudan, Botswana, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Ghana, Sierra Leone and South Africa.
Published on June 12, 2006