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Posts Tagged ‘corruption’

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Today I fell into conversation with a long-time mining consultant on the topic of invoices and payment thereof by clients.  He has been a specialist consultant to both the private sector mining industry and governments charged with closing mines abandoned by their former owners.  Here is a summary of the story he told me. (more…)

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   I know at least twelve families who live in North Vancouver.  They all work in mining and earn good incomes.  They all pay their taxes on time—well almost always on time.  Do you want to know what is done with the money they earn from mining to pay taxes? (more…)

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   We note without comment this statement by Rio Tinto on their web site regarding the conviction of executives for taking bribes:  (more…)

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    The title of this piece, El Salvador–Gold, Guns, and Choice,  is the title of a report that recently came my way.  If you are interested in the issues of social justice, mining, and death in Central America, I recommend you follow the link I provide to the full document.  It will repay your time, although it may leave you dispirited. (more…)

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Another coup in another African country is hardly news.  That the coup will affect mining in that country, Guinea, is hardly news.  Another group of powerful seeking to exact their share of the resources, and it is inevitable that we will have to go through the dreary litany of review of permits, renegotiation of licences, and various and subsidiary bribes distributed by legal means.

Here is a summary of the basics of the country from the CIA Handbook:

Guinea possesses major mineral, hydropower, and agricultural resources, yet remains an underdeveloped nation. The country has almost half of the world’s bauxite reserves and is the second-largest bauxite producer. The mining sector accounts for over 70% of exports. Long-run improvements in government fiscal arrangements, literacy, and the legal framework are needed if the country is to move out of poverty. Investor confidence has been sapped by rampant corruption, a lack of electricity and other infrastructure, a lack of skilled workers, and the political uncertainty due to the failing health of President Lansana CONTE.

The president has died and a group of military officers has taken over: a new round in the African tragedy unfolds.  The interesting New Year issue is the opportunities and obligations of the mining industry and  miners in this equation. 

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A fine first day in California, although some pretty depressing news and views from mining Africa–but then corruption and incompetence in Africa is so routine I hesitate to write about the common-place, for it is so common.   Seems to me if you choose to invest or work in mines in Africa, you must be prepared to take the tough along with the profit or loss.  Them guys are not angels–they are tribalists, and tribalists look after the tribe first, and maybe the white worker or investor last, if at all. 

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