By Sami Zaptia.
London, 1 April 2019:
Libya’s National Oil Corporation (NOC), reaffirmed its institutional commitment to good governance and fiscal accountability at a meeting on ‘Transparency in Commodity Trading’ hosted by the Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO) and the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) in Lausanne, Switzerland.
Speaking at the forum’s opening keynote session last Thursday, NOC chairman Mustafa Sanalla said: “EITI is the benchmark for international transparency for our industry. We are thus exploring further cooperation to help institutionalize good governance and transparency and pave the way for other national entities. Transparency makes business sense – deterring abuse of authority and corruption while building investor confidence”.
“Our mission is to transparently administer Libya’s resources for the benefit of all Libyans while ensuring good governance for future generations. Libya needs additional mechanisms of accountability that minimize corruption risks and the opportunity for those who would repeatedly attempt to illegally export oil. Transparency helps build a more responsible citizenry – these initiatives incentivize responsible behaviour towards the state’s resources,” added Sanalla.
The NOC has been regularly publishing its monthly oil revenues since June 2018. Additionally, the corporation publishes tender announcements, upstream investment, downstream capacities, as well as monthly official selling prices for crude oil.
It hopes that these initiatives can serve as a benchmark for other institutions in Libya, and contribute to the building of an overall good governance framework in the country.
Nevertheless, the NOC still comes in for criticism within Libya from the private sector for a lack of transparency with regards its tendering process. Critics believe it is not doing enough to create a level playing field for Libyan companies to compete with foreign contractors in order to train Libyans and transfer knowledge into Libya.
The EITI, launched in 2002, is a global initiative that seeks to ensure good governance in extractive industries across the world. It has overseen the disclosure of over $2.5 trillion worth of revenues to date, of which $1.4 comes from the sale of the state’s share of oil, gas and mining production. The EITI Standard is implemented in 52 countries including Nigeria, Indonesia, the Democratic Republic of Congo and Norway