On Wednesday June 19th, 2013, the Security Council held an Open Debate on the Maintenance of International Peace and Security under the presidency of the United Kingdom. The focus of the debate was the link between conflict prevention and natural resource management. Deputy Secretary-General, Jan Eliasson's briefing was followed by the briefings of Chairperson of the Africa Progress Panel, Kofi Annan; Managing Director of the World Bank, Caroline Anstey; and Associate Administrator of the United Nations Development Programme, Rebeca Grynspan. Forty-one Member States, in addition to the European Union, addressed the Council.
Only the briefings of Deputy Secretary General Jan Eliasson and Associate Administrator of the United Nations Development Programme Rebeca Grynspan and the statement of Denmark noted that there is a gender dimension to extractive industries. They voiced the imperative need for multi-stakeholder consultations that represent affected communities. In particular, they mentioned the need for women's participation in such consultations regarding resource management.
Not one statement made direct reference to resolutions on women, peace and security: Resolutions 1325 (2000), 1820 (2008), 1888 (2009), 1889 (2009) or 1960 (2010). The recent Secretary-General's annual report on Sexual Violence in Conflict (S/2013/149), broadly discussed at the Open Debate on April 17th 2013, highlighted the direct links between sexual violence and the extraction of natural resources. We particularly regret that these links were not emphasized during this Open Debate on the Maintenance of the International Peace and Security.
The Security Council addressed the need for financial transparency and the creation of a level playing field in the extractive industry in order to decrease potential conflicts and to deter corruption. The debate acknowledged the need to engage local communities in the management of resources and called for Member States to exhibit inclusiveness, transparency, and accountability throughout the entire extractive industry value chain.
Chairperson of the Africa Progress Panel, Kofi Annan, made the important distinction that it is the competition for natural resources that can amplify and expedite conflicts. Consequently, Annan pointed out that the global community is responsible for securing global rules to minimize tax avoidance and eliminate exploitative transactions. Extracted resources should be used to contribute to higher development outcomes and the reduction of inequality.
Member States who spoke at the debate included representatives of: Argentina, Armenia, Australia, Azerbaijan, Belgium, Bolivia, Botswana, Brazil, Canada, China, Denmark, Ecuador, Egypt, Eritrea, Ethiopia, France, Gabon, Germany, Guatemala, India, Japan, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Morocco, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nigeria, Pakistan, Papa New Guinea, Qatar, Republic of Korea, Russian Federation, Rwanda, South Africa, Switzerland, Timor-Leste, Togo, Turkey, Uganda, United Kingdom, and the United States.
UN and Civil Society representatives at the debate included: Deputy Secretary-General of the United Nations Jan Eliasson, Chairperson of the Africa Progress Panel Kofi Annan, Managing Director of the World Bank Caroline Anstey, and Associate Administrator of the United Nations Development Programme Rebeca Grynspan. The representative of the European Union delegation also delivered a statement.
*States and representatives who referenced gender are in bold.