As the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) is new to Solomon Islands, overtime implementing stakeholder’s including the Government, Civil society Groups and Mining Industries faces many challenges with rolling the Initiative.
And from 8-11 September 2015, the SI EITI implementing Multi-Stakeholders Group(MSG) visited Timor-Leste for an EITI capacity building training. The visitaim to increase the MSG member knowledge and understanding of EITI processes and requirement through learning from Timor-Leste counterparts, the first EITI Compliance country in the Asia Pacific.
Thevisiting Team comprises of the MSG representative from the Ministry of Finance and Treasury, VoisBlong Mere Solomon, The Nature Conservancy and Sumitomo Metal Mining Solomon Limited. There are total of 12 MSG members in Solomon Islands- 6 from Civil Society Groups, 4 Government, and 2 Industries. MSG Members travelling on the trip are selected as therepresentatives of all SI EITI MSG members.
TheHead of the SI EITI National Secretariat Office Vincent Obimae, explained that EITI is aglobal standard for promoting transparency and accountability in the revenue from mining. What it does is the mining industries declare what they paid to the Government and the Government declare what it receives from the mining companies. The Civil Society Groups always acted as watchdog.Solomon Islands had signed to EITI in 2011.
In Dili, Timor-Leste, the Group participated on different capacity building activities for a week which includes meetings with senior public officers, which included a meeting with Timor-Leste Minister of Petroleum and Timor Leste Central Bank senior managements. While in Dili, the team also talked with various civil society groups and industriesrepresentative. The group also made a visit to a non-metallicmining operation outside Dili.
The event is organise by the Solomon Islands EITI National Secretariat office, in working with Timor-Leste EITI National Secretariat Office in Dili with funding from the World Bank.
Mr. Vincent Obimae also thanked the World Bank Group for the financial support towards the trip.