Including technical assistance towards the Management of Oil and Gas
WASHINGTON, April 21, 2011—The Board of Executive Directors of the World Bank has today approved the Extractive Industries Technical Assistance Project (EITAP) worth US$4 million of additional financing to the Government of Sierra Leone’s Extractive Industries sector to help finance the costs of scaling up activities to address the country’s current governance and transparency challenges within the sector.
This additional IDA grant will be pooled with DFID co-financing of GBP 2.1 million and is specifically meant to help build needed capacities in the country for the preparation and negotiation of mining agreements and for monitoring their implementation and regulatory compliance. The co-financed grant will also strengthen government’s capacity for revenue collection, especially revenues that were not originally specified under the previous project due to resource constraints.
The 2009 discovery of oil in Sierra Leone and the 2010 confirmation of the find resulted in Government of Sierra Leone’s urgent request to the World Bank to include the oil and gas sector into their technical assistance framework as well as assist with the development of sustainable sector strategy and requisite implementation frameworks.
The project is a part of an integrated approach to extractive industries reforms that extends the goal of sound management and transparency along the full spectrum of the extractive industries management chain, from the awarding of licenses and contracts, to the monitoring of operations, to the collection of taxes and sound equitable distribution of revenues, and finally to the implementation of sustainable development projects. The project will form a nexus of ongoing complementary activities by (a) being a coordinated part of the broader reform framework in the country; and (b) ensuring that mining sector reform fits within the regional context and is aligned with regional objectives such as the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), and the Africa Action Plan.
The project will fulfill the ongoing commitment by the World Bank to supporting governance, security and peace in Sierra Leone in line with its Joint Assistance Strategy (JAS), particularly on outcomes that involve improving government’s capacity to administer mining sector and implementing anti-corruption measures applicable to the sector.