Friday, July 13, 2007

Auditing natural resource revenues...


When my editor and I were exchanging drafts of this piece, my spam blocker wouldn't let them through. There is too much talk of Nigeria and diamonds! Here is one excerpt:

Paul Collier, an economics professor at Oxford University, has a new and potentially powerful idea. In his recently published book, “The Bottom Billion: Why the Poorest Countries Are Failing and What Can Be Done About It” (Oxford University Press), Professor Collier favors an international charter — some widely publicized guidelines that countries can voluntarily adopt — to give transparency in spending wealth from natural resources. A country would pledge to have formal audits of its revenues and their disposition. Imagine PricewaterhouseCoopers auditing the copper revenues of Zambia and issuing a public report.

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