By: Johanna Jansson, Christopher Burke & Wenran Jiang
The Centre for Chinese Studies at Stellenbosch University embarked on a research undertaking in 2008 and 2009 supported by the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) and Revenue Watch Institute (RWI). The report, now released, aims to ascertain perceptions held by Chinese stakeholders of African operational environments and transparency in general, and the EITI in particular.
Titled “Chinese Companies in the Extractive Industries of Gabon & the DRC: Perceptions of Transparency”, the report builds on field research conducted in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and Gabon in 2008 and 2009. While few of the Chinese company representatives in both Gabon and the DRC consulted for this study were aware of the EITI, all of them expressed great interest in the notion of an overarching transparency initiative. Notably in the DRC, the respondents expressed that poor governance is the single biggest challenge to their operations. It is concluded that implementation of the EITI can indeed be a useful tool to improve the operational environment for African, Chinese and other stakeholders active in Africa’s extractive industries.