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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.

SAIIA Occasional Paper, No 50, October 2009
Climate Change and Trade: the Challenges for Southern Africa Dates: 26-27 October, 2009 Venue: Southern Sun Hotel, Beatrix Street, Pretoria
How can we improve the lives of the more than 3 billion people living in natural resource endowed countries? The question appears paradoxical in that countries ‘blessed’ with oil and minerals have been endowed with a natural advantage in a frenetically competitive and increasingly resource-scarce globalised world.
SAIIA Occasional Paper, No 45, October 2009
 How can we improve the lives of the more than 3 billion people living in natural resource endowed countries? The question appears paradoxical in that countries ‘blessed’ with oil and minerals have been endowed with a natural advantage in a frenetically competitive and increasingly resource-scarce globalised world. Yet with few notable exceptions, resource rich countries, particularly in the global ‘South’, have been characterised by a paradox of plenty which manifests in the so-called resource curse. In summary, the resource curse has a number of national features, including a propensity towards conflict, corrosive corruption, acute inequality, state disengagement from and unresponsiveness…
Climate change, in part a result of rising greenhouse gas emissions, is seen as the most pressing environmental problem of our time. The Kyoto Protocol to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) marks the first step towards an international response to limit emissions of greenhouse gases. As the Kyoto Protocol comes up for review in 2012, negotiations towards the formulation of its successor are underway and will culminate in a Conference of Parties (COP) meeting in Copenhagen in December 2009 with a view to agree on a more ambitious, inclusive and effective international response.
Promoting peace and security in Africa is one of the goals of the EU-South Africa strategic partnership. Ongoing conflict in Darfur, Sudan and the crisis in Zimbabwe were high on the agenda of the 1st EU-South Africa summit held in July last year in Bordeaux, France, under the auspices of presidents Sarkozy and Mbeki. These issues were raised again this year at the 2nd EU-South Africa summit held in Cape Town on 11 September. At an academic forum held on the fringes of this summit, the question was asked whether the Zuma presidency has brought about a closer alignment of…
President Mamadou Tandja of Niger has joined the club of leaders who have overturned constitutions to overstay their welcome in recent years. Following victory in the referendum held on 4 August, he is the twelfth African leader in a decade to engineer a third term of office. Has the tide turned against the ‘third wave’ of democratisation in Africa?
Oh no, not another ‘new vision’ for Africa. Since the Lagos Plan of Action was launched in 1980, Africa has given birth to some 20 grand recovery plans, or continental developmental blueprints, the last of which was Thabo (‘I am an African’) Mbeki’s New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD). Even NEPAD had two previous incarnations, the Millennium Africa Recovery Plan (MAP) and the New African Initiative (NAI). Besides the messianic zeal of those who would save Africa and lift it from its dark abyss, there is an arrogance and naïve simplicity that permeates all such continental blueprints. That is, until…
SAIIA in collaboration with the  International Centre for Trade and Sustainable Development (ICTSD) and the International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD) organized a Regional Trade and Climate Change Consultation in Johannesburg, South Africa, on May 7-8, 2009. The objectives of the regional consultation were to explore the issues at the interface of trade and climate change of concern and interests to African countries and identify a positive agenda able to contribute to engagement of African countries in the process of negotiations towards the UNFCCC Copenhagen summit in December.
SAIIA’s Western Cape Branch will be hosting a public seminar to be addressed by Professor Geoff Brundrit on ‘The Impact of Sea Level Rise on the Great Harbour Cities of Africa - Alexandria, Lagos and Cape Town.’
The manner in which Eskom has been criticised for its proposed tariff hike can best be described by the West African saying that “for as long as the lion does not have a story teller, the hunter’s opinion will always dominate the story”. The criticism has largely been one sided. Indeed, the arguments against the tariff hike are subjective and “short-sighted”. The risk of exerting upward pressure on inflation and the need to protect the poor, have been advanced as the main reasons Eskom should not hike its tariff.
US PRESIDENT Barack Obama is the methadone of the US’s international relations rapid rehab programme. Driven by fear, intoxicated with the gluttony of hard power and addicted to military security solutions for the past eight years, Obama is now beginning to wean the world’s hyperpower off its toxic dependency. Indeed, Obama’s Africa policy speech delivered in Ghana at the weekend illustrated as much about the US’s own foreign policy renaissance as it did about its desired relationship with the continent of 54 countries and almost a billion people.
The Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) on 30 June was one year short of its 50th anniversary of independence. In the current political and economic context, this year’s mood was reflective rather than celebratory.  The anniversary day was therefore an opportune time for the South African Institute of International Affairs (SAIIA)’s Governance of Africa’s Resources Programme (GARP) to hold a roundtable discussion on the DRC. Attended by members of the governmental, diplomatic, academic, policy-making and business community, the event was aptly titled “Reviewing the Giant” and focused on the mining and forestry sectors.
Tuesday, 30 June 2009

Reviewing the Giant

South African Institute of International Affairs Governance of Africa's Resources Programme invites you to a Roundtable Meeting on 'Reviewing the Giant': Progress, Problems and Prospects for Natural Resource Governance in the DRC. Venue: Jan Smuts House
SAIIA Research Report, No 4, June 2009  Download - English [.pdf] (1.11 MB) This case study on forestry governance in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) forms part of a three-year project entitled Strengthening the Governance of Africa’s Natural Resources, conducted by the Governance of Africa’s Resources Programme (GARP) of the South African Institute of International Affairs (SAIIA).
SAIIA Occasional Paper, No 35, June 2009
The Department of Minerals and Energy (DME) released its draft independent power producer (IPP) regulations on January 30 with a harsh deadline of March 2, for public comment. What is interesting is the timing of this release. The National Energy Regulator of South Africa (Nersa) released its consultation paper and draft guidelines on the renewable energy feed-in tariff (Refit) in December, conducted extensive public hearings and released its final draft of the Refit policy at the end of March. The question that arises is whether the DME was attempting to complement or thwart Nersa in its Refit policy.
This book wipes the lustre off Africa's sparkling success story, Botswana. Through the pages of a relatively slim volume, Australian Professor Kenneth Good, who was declared an ‘Undesirable Immigrant' and deported from Botswana in June 2005, painstakingly unearths a different reality to this much-vaunted case of African exceptionalism.
In Africa, as in the rest of the world, discussions are heating up in preparation for international climate change negotiations, to culminate in Copenhagen at the end of the year 
Has South Africa's foreign policy influence peaked? If the current state of our nation is difficult to divine, then assessing the state of the country's international relations is even more perplexing. A clutch of institutional, conjunctural and structural issues challenge the effectiveness of South Africa's foreign policy, all of which demand sober consideration.
Two key issues emerged from the tenth Southern Africa Energy conference, held in Sandton Johannesburg from 10 - 12 February 2009. These were the urgent need to hasten regional energy integration and the need for Africa to properly strategise on and harness the role of financial markets in the quest for energy security.
Should and can Zimbabwe adopt the Rand as its currency as a first step towards the recovery of its battered economy? The debate is moot. The media has greeted such a possibility with fanfare, yet very little serious engagement on its implications both for Zimbabwe and South Africa 
Poachers are not the core problem in the management of South African marine resources, it is poor policy. This poor policy effectively turns ordinary traditional fishers into poachers and traditional law enforcement strategies are failing to curb the problem. 
Illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing is essentially the theft of marine resources, whereby international fishing vessels enter a country's exclusive economic zone (EEZ) and fish without licenses, or use destructive fishing gear. As much as US$10 billion in revenues is lost annually to IUU fishing.
The Devils' excrement, or black gold? There are no neutral views on oil. Its exploitation has been the source of fabulous wealth and untold misery.
Human nature abhors a vacuum, to misquote Aristotle. This is apparent in the Kivu provinces of the Democratic Republic of Congo. Where Joseph Kabila's new government cannot secure the outer corners of a huge territory, other actors have rushed in.