Michael Barron + Tim Law – Contract Transparency: benefits for responsible companies


There is growing pressure for contracts and licences for the extraction of minerals to be published. Some governments require contracts to be published. EITI has introduced a requirement that all contracts entering in force after 1 January 2021 should be published. Resourcecontracts.org has placed hundreds of contracts and licences online. At the same time, there are concerns about the publication of commercial terms and undermining competitive markets. Contract transparency is about more than knowing the commercial terms underpinning mineral extraction. It is about understanding the full terms and obligations on both companies and governments including the environmental, safety and social obligations. Responsible companies can use contract transparency to demonstrate that they are adhering to their obligations, have a well informed debate over contract terms and increase the scrutiny on less responsible companies. Companies should take a proactive approach to contract transparency.