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Prevent bribery and corruption

Corruption corrodes the fabric of society; it delegitimises the rule of law and the democratic system, depletes government revenues and can lead to environmental damage.

It is also considered to be a leading factor in the emergence of the ‘resource curse’. This is when countries with significant resources experience lower economic growth, less democracy and worse development outcomes. If a government does not need to tax its citizens because its income comes from resource wealth, the accountability thread between government and citizen becomes frayed over time and eventually the social contract breaks down.

Major mining companies have historically operated in developing countries in which other companies from the industrialised West would not have operated because of political risk-related issues. Mining companies have little choice but to operate wherever the resources are located. Many of these developing countries had, and in some cases still have, poor rule of law, underdeveloped mining regulations and little to no oversight from either parliament or citizens over government decision-making. It is in this context that the mining industry has gained a reputation for corruption.

Two of the ways that ICMM is addressing this challenge and changing perceptions is by actively supporting the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) and by requiring contract transparency.

Strengthening operational capacity

Ethical business practices that aim to prevent corruption are at the heart of ICMM’s membership requirements and central to our members’ efforts to ensure mining benefits host countries and communities.

ICMM has supported the EITI since its inception and it is now widely acknowledged to be the leading governance initiative in the extractive industries.

ICMM members have committed to disclosing all mineral development contracts granted, entered into or amended from 1 January 2021 that they have signed with host governments. Members are also encouraged to disclose contracts signed prior to January 2021. The purpose of this commitment is to allow both companies and governments to be held accountable for the decisions made on behalf of a country’s citizens.

ICMM’s support of Transparency International’s Accountable Mining Programme and our collaboration with other international organisations leading on these issues is another concrete example of our efforts to reduce corruption in the mining industry.