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Friday, 29th November 2013

Conflict and Coexistence in the Extractive Industries

Source: Chatham House

From Executive Summary and Recommendations:

Clashes over the terms of mineral contracts have become a political lightning rod in many resource-rich countries. A series of bitter disputes in recent years – some ending in lengthy litigation, project cancellation or even expropriation – has unsettled investors and global markets. These disputes call attention to the fragile and complex relationship between companies and their host governments that characterizes the extractives sector.

The economic significance of the sector to producer countries is well known, as is its role in influencing the fate of political leaders. Consequently, it is often subject to intense global scrutiny – whether over revenue transparency or its environmental legacy. Its impact on the national economy or local communities also remains an area of contested rights, responsibilities and benefits.

A decade of high prices and fast-growing global demand has triggered a new generation of mineral mega-investments. Many of these ventures are located in countries with long-established extractive industries, such as Australia, Chile and Canada. But ‘emerging producers’ – such as Mozambique and Mongolia – are also attracting interest from extractive companies, whether private corporations or state-owned enterprises (SOEs).

Today, public anticipation of the benefits of extractives projects is again rising in many countries, with producer governments asserting greater control over their mineral endowments. But these expectations come at a time when the operational and political context for mineral investments is shifting across the world, raising questions about the long-term future of the extractives sector, especially in developing countries.

+ Direct link to document (PDF; 1.3 MB)

+ Executive Summary and Recommendations (PDF; 119 KB)

+ Supplementary Online Materials (PDF; 1.2 MB)



Having begun his career in academic libraries, Adrian Janes has subsequently worked extensively in public libraries, chiefly in enquiry work as an Information Services librarian. In this role he has had particular responsibility for information from both the UK Government and the European Union. He wrote a detailed report on sources for the latter which was published by FreePint in 2007, and has contributed articles to FreePint and ResourceShelf. He is involved in training in information literacy and the use of online reference resources.

A Contributing Editor to DocuTicker, he also write reviews for Pennyblackmusic.

More articles by Adrian Janes »

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