Annual Report 2012

The oil worker at Libya’s El Sharara oil field is a reminder that political changes in the Arab world, new openness in parts of Asia and Africa, and growing public demand for transparency and accountability are creating opportunities to improve the lives of citizens – from the ground up.

Photo: Alfredo Caliz/Panos

Oil and gas have dominated the economic life of Iraq, a dependency that fueled corruption, helped block the growth of democracy and undermined state institutions, including schools. Revenue Watch has held workshops with key legislators and civil society leaders on management of the oil sector.

Photo: Ed Kashi/VII

In every country, citizens have a right to know the return from the sale of public resources. In the U.S., this is especially critical for the communities on the Gulf of Mexico that shoulder the risks of energy projects, such as this offshore rig.

Photo: Lowell Georgia

In 2005, vast new oil reserves were discovered in Java, Indonesia, and began to replace artisanal production. Revenue Watch and local partners set out to help the regencies of Blora and Bojonegoro manage new oil wealth from the “Cepu Block,” which contains at least 1.4 billion barrels of oil.

Photo: Ivan Kashinsky/Panos

Revenue Watch’s media training program, created with partner organizations, has offered experienced journalists courses on the oil, gas and mining industry, including field visits to places such as the mines at Ghana’s Elmina Castle beach. The number of the journalists’ stories on the industry more than doubled in a year.

Photo: PenPlusBytes

The “open” signs held by a member of Tunisia’s parliament and a civil society leader are reminders that the demonstrators who helped overthrow authoritarian governments in the Middle East and North Africa have a chance to transform how oil and other resources are governed in the region.

Photo: Anthony Richter/RWI

In August 2012, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission approved rules for oil, gas and mining companies to make public their payments to governments. The rules will make information available that can reduce corruption and unlock opportunities for economic development.

Photo: Ramin Talaie/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Nigeria’s first oil well, in Bayelsa state, is a reminder that without transparent, accountable management of revenues, oil wealth may not generate economic development. Over the past 30 years, Nigeria has earned more than $400 billion from oil, while its poverty rate has risen to 70 percent from 26 percent.

Photo: Ed Kashi/VII

Peru depends on oil and mining for 70 percent of its exports, including gold from this mine in the Madre de Dios region. Revenue Watch and its Peruvian partners have successfully worked with local authorities to improve revenue forecasting and budgeting, and to give citizens a larger role in planning.

Photo: Ron Haviv/VII

Afghanistan has an estimated $1 trillion to $3 trillion worth of minerals, including iron ore and copper. Revenue Watch is working with civil society and government ministries to bring greater revenue transparency, to benefit all citizens, including these cousins about to take a boat ride on Lake Qarga, near Kabul.

Photo: Lynsey Addario/VII

Burmese leader Aung San Suu Kyi has supported reforms such as joining the Extractive Industry Transparency Initiative. Multinational firms are jockeying to exploit Myanmar's natural resources. To ensure citizens reap the benefits from those resources, it's crucial the government increases transparency.

Photo: Adam Ferguson/VII

A family’s camel and felt hut are in the Oyu Tolgoi area, which is becoming one of the world’s largest copper and gold mines. Members of Mongolia’s parliament, government officials and civil society leaders have attended Revenue Watch workshops on managing the revenues coming from the mining boom.

Photo: Davide Monteleone/VII