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The Minister for Finance and Treasury, Hon Rick Houenipwela, will give the key note address at a workshop on the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) to be held at the Heritage Park Hotel on 26 - 27 January 2012.

The workshop will bring together landowners, government officials, and representatives of non-government organisations and mining companies to learn about the nature and benefits of EITI.  EITI is a global standard for promoting transparency and accountability in countries rich in oil, gas, and mineral resources. It is a government-led initiative which provides a mechanism for reporting, reviewing and assessing what money is being paid by mining companies and what money is being received by governments. The Solomon Islands government officially announced its endorsement of the initiative at a regional EITI workshop hosted by Timor Leste in August 2011.

The workshop participants will nominate representatives to form a multi-stakeholder group which will play a critical role in implementing the Solomon Islands’ EITI process. This multi-stakeholder group will provide oversight and strategic direction to the entire process.  The group will develop the EITI work plan, determine the scope of the EITI program, and conduct the process of audit and reconciliation of information. 

Representatives of government and civil society from Timor Leste and Mongolia, countries already implementing EITI, will present case studies on their country experiences at the workshop and offer advice on implementing EITI in the Solomon Islands. EITI will generate publically available information to allow Solomon Islanders to see how much revenue is being generated from mining and ensure that these funds are flowing to government in an appropriate manner.

Over the next few months the Government intends to take the final steps to achieve EITI candidacy and progress this important initiative.

The workshop is being organized by the Ministry of Finance and Treasury and the World Bank, with the assistance of the British High Commission.

For more information on this press release contact Shadrach Fanega, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Finance and Treasury on 22556.

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