By the numbers — the fight for oil and mining company transparency

By the numbers — the fight for oil and mining company transparency


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Ian Gary, senior policy manager for extractive industries at Oxfam America, takes a look at the facts and figures of corruption in Africa. This piece was originally published on the Politics of Poverty blog. This is a part of a larger blog series on transparency in the extractives industry. Stay tuned for more updates on this topic.

1504 : Section in Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform Act requiring companies to disclose taxes, royalties, and other payments made to the US and foreign governments

1.5 billion: People living on less than $2 a day in “resource-rich” countries

$30 million: Value of Malibu mansion owned by Teodoro Nguema Obiang, son of oil-rich Equatorial Guinea’s dictator

1: Number of white crystal-covered “Bad Tour” gloves in Teodoro’s Michael Jackson memorabilia collection valued at $3 million (See “US vs. One Crystal-Covered ‘Bad Tour’ Glove” court filing.)

270: Days after enactment that Congress required the SEC to issue a final rule (regulation) to implement the law

559: Days since Dodd-Frank enacted into law by President Obama

289: Days that the SEC has been in violation of the law

13: Months after Dodd-Frank that the European Commission issued a legislative proposal that would place a similar requirement on oil and mining companies

0: Host country laws oil companies have been able to cite that would prohibit disclosure of payment information as required by Dodd-Frank

3: Commissioners eligible to vote on the final rule (Chairwoman Schapiro and Commissioner Paredes are recused because of conflicts of interest.)

$50 million: Estimated amount Exxon says that it would cost to comply with law, even though it provides no backing data for the estimate and presumably already collects and tracks payment information

$41 billion: Exxon’s 2011 profits — a 35 percent increase over 2010

$100,000: Cost Barrick Gold, world’s largest gold producer, says it would cost them to comply

$1.2 trillion: Approximate combined assets under management of investors who have told SEC to issue a strong final rule

3: Companies and industry associations (Shell, Exxon and API) who say that payment disclosure “could allow terrorists” to target a project

2: Nigerian oil workers unions who say it would actually make them safer

5: Companies who met SEC Commissioner Gallagher on December 2, 2011, to lobby for a weak final rule—Shell, Exxon, Chevron, ConocoPhillips, and Occidental

15: Oil and mining companies who “support” the voluntary Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) program who are also members of American Petroleum Institute (API). API has threatened to sue the SEC to keep payment info secret.

5: Companies on the EITI board who are also API members

11: Luxury sports cars worth at least $5 million belonging to Teodoro seized by French police in Paris as part of an investigation into possible corruption

20: Days after auto seizure that President Obiang scored his son a UNESCO envoy post in Paris

$5,000: Teodoro’s reported monthly government salary as Equatorial Guinea’s minister of agriculture

2010: Year Equatorial Guinea was expelled from EITI for failing to meet its minimum transparency requirements

5: Companies producing oil and gas in Equatorial Guinea who will be covered by Dodd-Frank (Exxon, Marathon, Hess, Noble, and Mitsui produce the vast majority of oil and gas in Equatorial Guinea. The first four are members of the American Petroleum Institute. API sent a letter to the SEC on January 19 saying it would be unlawful to issue a final rule to implement the Dodd-Frank provision.)

No data: Percent of Equatorial Guinea’s population living below the poverty line. An estimated 60 percent lived on less than $1 a day according to a 2006 UN report.

700,000: Population in Equatorial Guinea still in the dark about the country’s finances and waiting for full implementation of Dodd-Frank Section 1504

Ian Gary is the Senior Policy Manager for Extractive Industries at Oxfam America and the author of Oxfam America report Ghana’s Big Test: Oil’s Challenge to Democratic Development. He has been quoted in major media outlets, has testified twice before the US Congress, and has given presentations at the World Bank, the UN, and other venues.


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