Azeribaijani children swimming in the Caspian Sea (AFP)
October 17, 2006 -- The third Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) conference on fighting corruption in the energy and mining sectors today urged poor but resource-rich countries to protect their wealth with fiscal transparency.
A final statement recommends moving ahead with a plan to allow countries to seek independent confirmation that they meet the standards set by the initiative.
The criteria include the disclosure of all company payments made to and received by governments, and credible audits of such transactions.
At the meeting, Azerbaijan pledged to be the first country to complete the validation process, by late 2006 or early 2007.