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Governance of Africa’s Resources

Based in Cape Town, GARP provides advisory and research support to governments and other stakeholders on governing Africa’s natural resources to maximise their equitable and sustainable development contributions. Regular field research, policy convening and dialogue activities are led by GARP experts in the three focal areas of mining and development; energy and the green economy; and the governance of ecosystems and commons resources (including fisheries and forestry).

Increasingly acknowledged as an influential African voice on resource governance, the programme works closely with local, regional and other international partners, including through the SAIIA Change-Makers forum and the Governance of Africa’s Resources Research Network (GARN). Co-ordinated by GARP, the network facilitates capacity-building, knowledge-sharing and the up-scaling of research outputs beyond the respective national levels.

View a playlist of videos related to this programme on YouTube. Contact the programme on resourcegov[@]saiia.org.za.

The governance of Africa's natural resources continues to be a heatedly discussed topic. Alex Benkenstein, a senior researcher with SAIIA, speaks with leading researchers about their views on the key issues that need to be addressed to achieve effective governance of Africa’s natural resources. Watch the video [Duration: 8min 16sec] Download the podcast [Duration: 9min 41sec]
SAIIA Policy Briefing No 60, November 2012
The nationalisation of resources has been the subject of heated debate in recent months, both within Africa and beyond. Abroad, the Canadian government’s recent refusal to accept a foreign buy-out of a locally-owned gas exploration company has raised eyebrows. At home, emotive exchanges over the possible nationalisation of the mining sector have dominated the public discourse in the run-up to Mangaung.
South African Institute of International Affairs cordially invites you to a Roundtable Discussion on Sustainable Prosperity: New Challenges for Natural Resource Governance Theory in Africa Date: Tuesday, 27 November 2012 Time: 09h00-16h00 (Registration 08h30 to 08h50) Venue: Jan Smuts House, East Campus, Wits University, Johannesburg Parking: Parking is available on both sides of Jan Smuts House and the surrounding area
International climate change talks will kick off in Qatar today (26 November). The next two weeks will witness intense negotiations at the eighteenth session of the Conference of the Parties (COP 18) between the UN and leaders from around the globe about the future of the climate change regime.
SAIIA Policy Briefing No 59, November 2012
Minerals as a catalyst for growth and development was the key focus of the Eighth African Development Forum, 23-25 October 2012. Under the title 'Governing and Harnessing Natural Resources for Africa’s Development', the meeting sought to highlight the role that Africa’s natural resources can play in the continent’s economic transformation and socio-economic development.
The African Development Forum (ADF) is a biennial event hosted by the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) in collaboration with the AU Commission, the African Development Bank, and other partners. The theme of the eighth ADF, concluded recently in Addis Ababa on 23-25 October 2012, was “Governing and Harnessing Natural Resources for Africa’s Development.” The forum focussed on key natural resource sectors on the continent, namely mining, forestry, fisheries and land.
A SAIIA researcher, Romy Chevallier, will be attending the eighteenth session of the Conference of the Parties (COP 18) on climate change over the next two weeks. She will be available to provide some commentary, updates and analysis from Doha. Other SAIIA staff specialising in climate change and African resources will also be available, based in Cape Town.
SAIIA Policy Briefing No 57, October 2012
It is widely acknowledged that well-functioning ecosystems provide reliable and clean flows of fresh water and air, productive soils, healthy and balanced biota, and many other services that contribute to the well-being of humans. It is also widely documented that many ecosystems and the services they provide are under severe threat globally. Human pressure and economic activities are currently compromising the resilience of these ecosystems and eroding their natural capacity to deliver vital regulating, provisioning, supporting and cultural services.
SAIIA Policy Briefing No 56, September 2012
SAIIA Occasional Paper No 122, September 2012
The Department of Mineral Resources recently lifted the moratorium on shale gas exploration in the Karoo. According to the US Energy Information Administration, this area potentially holds 485 trillion cubic feet of shale gas.
SAIIA Policy Briefing 55, August 2012
The South African Institute of International Affairs, Western Cape Branch, hosted a seminar on 30 August 2012 on "The South African mining industry on the road to Mangaung", addressed by Peter Leon.
The South African Institute of International Affairs, Western Cape Branch, invites you to a public seminar to be addressed by Peter Leon on "The South African mining industry on the road to Mangaung".Venue: Cape Town Holocaust Centre, 88 Hatfield St, Gardens, Cape Town
The Centre for Africa’s International Relations, in collaboration with the South African Institute of International Affairs (SAIIA) and the office of the Dean of Humanities of the University of the Witwatersrand (Wits) hosted a roundtable at Jan Smuts House on 20 August under the theme Dr Dlamini-Zuma’s election: The future of African integration and South Africa’s foreign policy.
‘Cui bono?’ or ‘Who benefits?’ is a question often asked by well-known political economist Susan Strange. This was also the guiding question of a recent SAIIA study on the tropical timber trade in Africa’s Great Lakes region. The report, entitled Timber Trade in Africa’s Great Lakes: The road from Beni, DRC to Kampala, Uganda focuses on international, regional and local demand-side drivers of tropical timber exports from the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) to and through Uganda.
SAIIA Policy Briefing No 53, August 2012
SAIIA CLOSED ROUNDTABLE: "New World Energy Trends after the Fukushima Accident" presented by Mr Nobua Tanaka, former Executive Director of the International Energy Agency.Venue: Jan Smuts House
In 2011 Parliament’s mineral resources committee conducted public hearings on the amendment of the Broad Based Socio Economic Empowerment Charter for the South African Mining Industry, namely the Amended Mining Charter of 2010. This occurred against the backdrop of negative press surrounding the mineral licensing process, managed by the Department of Mineral Resources (DMR) and the ongoing debate surrounding the nationalisation of South Africa’s mines.
SAIIA Report No 11, July 2012  Download - English [.pdf] (2.82 MB) Governance of Africa's Resource Programme The report provides a political economy analysis of the trade in tropical timber from the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) to and through Uganda via the Northern Transit Corridor. The study focuses on international, regional and local demand-side drivers for tropical timber exports from the eastern DRC to and through Uganda.
The intentions of the recent UN Conference on Sustainable Development in Brazil, Rio+20, compared to its 1992 precursor, were less about revisiting the outcomes from past events than crafting its own path towards sustainable development for the next decade. Top of the discussion list during the meeting from 13-22 June 2012 were seven critical issues, namely jobs, energy, cities, food, water, oceans and disasters.
Address by Nicolas Dasnois on "Africa's Uranium and the Global Nuclear Renaissance", Mountain Club of SA, Gardens, Cape Town
Like Libya last year, the rapidly deteriorating situation in Syria is forcing tough foreign policy choices the world over. In Ankara, the Turkish government has made its opposition to the Bashar al-Assad government crystal clear. The country's border with Syria is nowadays a porous line across which refugees flee to get away from a country going up in flames. Dissidents and elements of the loosely defined Free Syrian Army also use this border as a space to run logistics. Factions that support either the Assad government or opposition forces in Syria clashed in Lebanon during recent weeks.
World Oceans Day (8th June) is celebrated this year just days ahead of the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development, also known as Rio+20, where ocean governance will be one of the key themes under discussion. The world's oceans have become an increasingly crowded and contested arena of human activity in recent decades. Fishing and merchant shipping fleets have expanded dramatically in number and vessel capacity, with significant impacts on marine life. Technological innovations and high prices have fuelled exploration and competition for marine minerals and energy resources. Piracy has resurfaced as a major security threat in many parts of…
An unexpected wave of popular protests broke on Africa's northern shores in 2011, starting with the political demise of the Tunisian and Egyptian presidents, leading to more deadly conflict in Libya. These events – particularly those in Libya – have divided the African Union (AU), and shaken the organisation's fragile new foundations of democracy promotion and conflict prevention.
How do we ensure that Africans benefit maximally, equitably and sustainably from the continent's natural resource riches? This is not a new question. Questions about wise and accountable stewardship of earth's resources have long preoccupied both decision-makers and ordinary citizens the world over.