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Regional Partnership for Better Governance in Extractive Industries

Efforts by Indonesian civil society have generated gains in Extractive Industries area, including the 2010 decision by government to join the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI). In this project, we aim to share and expand those experience to the region by conducting a cross-national capacity building and advocacy that seeks to improve extractive industry transparency and accountability by supporting Indonesian civil society to consolidate and disseminate their experience.

Revenue Watch Institute, together with Indonesian CSOs: The PATTIRO Institute (PI); the Institute for Essential Services Reform (IESR); and the Indonesian Parliamentary Center (IPC); and with counterparts from Cambodia (Cambodians for Resource Revenue Transparency/CRRT), Malaysia (Research on For Social Advancement/REFSA), the Philippines (Bantay Kita), Timor Leste (Luta Hamutuk) and Vietnam (PanNature/CODE); are working to mount effective transparency campaigns that target regional, national and sub-national authorities.

These partnerships will pursue change at three levels: 1) Advocacy campaigns, led by IESR, will push for ASEAN to advocate extractive sector transparency as part of its broader program of economic integration. 2) In Cambodia, Malaysia, the Philippines and Vietnam, national civil society, led by regional partners with IPC support, will push for their governments to join EITI so as to increase transparency and multi-stakeholder dialogue about oil and mining operations and revenue management. Finally, 3) at the community level, civil society in the Philippines, Timor Leste and Vietnam, with support from PI, will empower communities to access and utilize information so they can better ensure that sector activities advance rather than counteract their interest.

Success in these activities could generate tangible improvements in extractive sector governance, and these can trigger broader gains. Transparency and participation reduce tensions in producing communities, lessening the likelihood of conflict. More information and better systems cause investment climates can improve, leading to sector growth and higher revenues. Disclosures and public accountability encourage more spending on poverty reduction and development priorities. Transparency in turn deters corruption, which undermines the integrity and efficiency of the state. By building the capacity of civil society to perform its oversight functions, Revenue Watch and its partners are working to support the development of robust democracies across Southeast Asia.

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