Crise et intervention étrangère au Mali : Que se passe-t-il au juste ?

Plus d’un demi-siècle après son accession à l’indépendance et malgré une volonté affirmée de construction nationale souveraine par le régime malien post-indépendance, le Mali est contraint de faire appel à son ancien colonisateur pour régler des problèmes internes. Paradoxalement, aucun pays africain n’a été en mesure de lui venir en aide. La nature négociée des indépendances, qui lient de nombreux pays africains à l’ancienne puissance coloniale par des clauses annexes en matière de défense, éclaire en partie cette situation.

Conférence d’Aziz Salmone Fall politologue au Groupe de recherches et d’initiatives pour la libération de l’Afrique (GRILA), coordonnateur de la Campagne internationale justice pour Sankara (CIJS) et président du Centre Internationaliste Stanley Bréhaut Ryerson Fondation Aubin (CIRFA).

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Community radio in Ghana

During the World Social Forum we are sharing audio with members of the World Association of Community Radio Broadcasters.

Preceding the official launch of the WSF there was a free media forum. One of the panels presented a overview of community radio around the world. Here is an interview with Joyce Anim Ayeko on community radio in Ghana.

The roots of inequality: Mining profits soar, but Africans are still poor

An article by Yao Graham from the Third World Network

The roots of inequality: Mining profits soar, but Africans are still poor | Embassy – Canada’s Foreign Policy Newspaper

Yao Graham from the Third World Network on mining in Africa

Based in Ghana, Yao Graham is the co-founder of the Third World Network-Africa. He was in Montreal recently to speak about mining and development in Africa as part of a Canadian awareness raising tour on mining issues organised by Canadian NGO Inter Pares.

Listen to his presentation
[The first minute is a french introduction]

And an interview with Yao Graham

About TWN-Africa

TWN-Africa has become one of the continent’s leading policy and campaigning organizations on economic justice and the environment. TWN-Africa conducts research on issues such as resource extraction, climate change, and the economy. It critiques national and international policies, and proposes solutions that address local, national, and pan-African concerns.

TWN-Africa analyzes mining projects for their impact on community well-being, human rights, the environment, and the economy. Through the establishment of the National Commission on Mining, they have helped mining-affected communities in Ghana hold government and corporations accountable to local concerns. And TWN-Africa has broadened its impact across the continent through founding a pan-African network called the African Initiative on Mining, Environment and Society.

TWN-Africa has successfully led the movement to transform the debate on mining in Africa.

Latest AMANDLA show: Kibale Health Project and Liberian refugees in Ghana

A look at the Kibale Health and Conservation Project (KHCP).

On this edition of Amandla, we focussed on McGill’s involvement in Africa and some initiatives that faculty and students have undertaken in recent years to address health issues in the areas where they are working. We specifically discussed the KHCP – an initiative spearheaded by Dr. Lauren and Colin Chapman from the departments of Biology and Anthropology at McGill University. A major goal of the KHCP is the construction of a medical clinic just inside the main gates of Kibale National Park in South-Western Uganda.

To discuss the project, we are joined by Jesse Jenkinson, a recent graduate of McGill, and member of the KHCP. Since graduating, Jesse has been actively involved in the KHCP, and recently returned to Uganda to assist with the construction of the clinic and other logistic aspects of the project. We discussed the goals of the health centre, recent progress and challenges that lie ahead.

 

Diana Sharpe’s interview. Listen

[For more information about this project, or to contribute, you can visit: http://www.arts.mcgill.ca/anthro/chapman_files/CWeb/Clinic/ClinicHome.html]

And Roberto Nieto talks to Shannon from the Center for Youth Empowerment on the plight of Liberian refugees in a Ghanean refugee camp. Listen

Ghana: la crise de l’énergie s’aggrave/ Ghana: the energy crisis worsens

(Lien en anglais/ link in english)

Bien que le Ghana ait découvert du pétrole. Le pays sombre dans une crise énergétique grave selon IRIN (voir plus bas).

Even if Ghana found oil lately, the country sinks into a serious energy crisis according to IRIN:

GHANA: Hydro-power crisis getting worse

ACCRA , 3 August 2007 (IRIN) – Ghana is undergoing its worst power crisis since 1998. People here currently have an average of only 12 hours of electricity a day, and, with insufficient rain to keep its hydropower stations functioning, the situation is likely to deteriorate, affecting individual livelihoods and the economy as a whole.

The water level of Lake Volta, the largest man-made lake in West Africa, which normally supplies 60 percent of Ghana’s energy needs, is at an all-time low, 234.96 ft below the critical minimum. [Picture: Akosombo Dam who created the Volta lake in Ghana]

Akosombo DamThe lack of water in the lake has created a 300 MW power shortfall.

Weather forecasters predict drought in all three northern regions of Ghana where the sources of the rivers that feed Lake Volta are located.

“The masses are suffering.” John Atipoe, an electrician and father of four, told IRIN.

“The frequent power cuts destroyed my refrigeration system and I had no money to repair it,” said 51-year old Juliet Adjoa Serwah who used to make money selling food and drinks. “Now I have to resort to basket weaving to look after my three kids.”

Economic warning
According to Ghanaian economist Nii Moi Thompson, “It’s almost certain now that low productivity due to the crisis will block the attainment of the 6.5 percent GDP [Gross National Product] growth forecast for this year.”

The impact of the power cuts have already been huge for small and medium scale enterprises, which, according to Ghana’s finance and economic minister, account for about 90 per cent of all businesses in the country.

Big industries are also feeling the pinch: The mining industry is currently spending 8.6 million dollars a month to make up for the shortfall from the national grid. In March, Ghana’s only aluminum smelter company, VALCO, shut down due to the inadequate supply of power, laying off 500 workers.

Energy conservation
In the offices of the Ministry of Energy posters encourage people to save energy. The ministry said it was importing 6 million energy-saving bulbs to be distributed to the public free-of-charge.

“Conserving energy is the best way to deal with this crisis,” Energy Minister Joseph Adda told IRIN. “We expect to save up to 200 MW of energy with this approach.”

The government said it was also encouraging independent power producers to assist in meeting the energy shortfall. The Wood Group, a private company from the UK has agreed to provide 50 MW; mining companies in Ghana have come together to create an 80 MW plant.

In the meantime Adda said the government was setting up emergency thermal plants that are expected to generate up to 126 MW.

But the costs of power from fossil fuels are high. The government said it has been spending close to US $42 million a month to fuel the generators. “The consumer must be prepared to pay more if we are to run these emergency plants at full capacity,” Adda said.

The ministry is commissioning additional power plants to be installed in the next 12 to 18 months. “This forms part of the plan to have an installed capacity of over 3,000 MW by 2010,” Adda told IRIN.
But switching from renewable hydro power to power fueled by gas and diesel is also likely to have negative environmental impacts

Political fallout

The government has started construction of another hydro-electric plant which is expected to be completed in 2012, providing 400 MW. But leaders in the main political opposition, the National Democratic Congress (NDC), have criticized the move, questioning why the government thinks it can successfully build a new hydro plant given the on goings problems with the old one.

Political analysts say the handling of the power crisis could determine whether the ruling New Patriotic Party wins or loses next year’s general elections.

Émissions Amandla du 20 et du 27 juin 2007/ Amandla shows from June 20th and 27th 2007

Voici les thèmes qui ont été abordés pendant les émissions Amandla du 20 et 27 juin dernier sur les ondes de CKUT 90.3FM (Montréal). Vous pouvez les télécharger ici (lien valide pour deux mois seulement).

Le 27 juin

Entrevue avec Béatrice Umutesi présentant son livre: “Fuir Umutesiou mourir au Zaïre. Le vécu d’une réfugiée rwandaise” – en français. Mme Umutesi est une ancienne réfugiée originaire du Rwanda qui s’enfuit au Zaïre suite au génocide rwandais. Elle travaillait comme coordonnatrice d’ONG avant de fuir au Zaïre. Elle découvre que le Front Patriotique Rwandais (FPR), mouvement de libération qui est aujourd’hui au pouvoir au Rwanda, aurait aussi perpétré des massacres contre les hutus pendant le génocide. La situation rwandaise a donc été plus confuse que ce qu’a bien voulu présenter la presse internationale. Paradoxalement, c’est le FPR que Mme Umutesi dut fuir. Elle quitte pour le Zaïre. Mais la guerre la rejoint avec des soldats du Rwanda qui traversent la frontière pour attaquer les camps de réfugiés. Mme Umutesi dut encore fuir marchant 2000 km dans la jungle congolaise pour trouver la paix.

Décès de Ousmane Sembène (photo plus bas) – en français et anglais. Icône du cinéma africain, né en Casamance (Sénégal). Revue de sa carrière et de sa vie. Il a écrit 5 romans, 5 recueils nouvelles et 14 films.

Les États-Unis cherchent une base pour l’AFRICOM – en anglais. Tel que présenté dans le blog, les pays d’Afrique du Nord refusent d’héberger l’AFRICOM sur leur territoire.

 

L’Union Européenne négocie une entente de libre-échange avec la CEDEAO (Communauté économique des États de l’Afrique de l’Ouest) – en anglais. Une telle entente lierait l’une des plus riches régions du monde avec l’une des plus pauvre. Les négociations ne se font donc surement pas sur une base “d’égal à égal”. L’Europe pourrait avoir un accès total au marché de la CEDEAO.

Comment le monde arabe ignore le Darfour – en anglais. Analyse d’un article paru dans le New Internationalist, intitulé “Salaam Darfur”, et qui critique le silence et même le déni du monde arabe devant les événements du Darfur. Cet article a été écrit par deux activiste arabes: Moataz El Fegiery et Ridwan Ziyada.

 

Le 20 juin

 

Émission entièrement en anglais.

Commentaires sur les discussions entre le Front Polisario et le Maroc sous les auspices des Nations Unies – en anglais. Les discussions se sont faites sous les regards d’observateurs Algériens et Mauritaniens. Elles se sont tenues à la suite d’une résolution de l’ONU datant d’avril 2007. Jusqu’à maintenant, rien n’a bougé, si ce n’est la décision de continuer les discussions en août 2007. Pendant ce temps, une génération de réfugiés vit toujours en Algérie, et beaucoup d’entre eux n’ont jamais vu le Sahara Occidental.

Découverte du pétrole au Ghana – en anglais. Le Ghana espère exploiter son pétrole sans tomber dans le piège de la mauvaise gestion de la ressource.

SIDA et développement en Afrique – en anglais. SIDA et développement ont mauvaise presse en Afrique. Le SIDA n’est pas qu’un enjeu de santé publique, il bloque le développement économique. Même dans un pays riche comme le Botswana, il peut faire des ravages.

Grèves générales en Afrique du Sud – en anglais. L’Afrique Du Sud entre dans sa 18ème-19ème journée de grève générale alors que les syndicats et le gouvernement n’arrivent pas à s’entendre. Des reportages provenant du terrain sont présentés.

Here are the subjects that were addressed in the June 20th and 27th Amandla radio shows on CKUT 90.3 FM (Montreal). You can download the shows here (link valid for two months only).

June 27th

United States try to find an african base for AFRICOM – in english. Countries from Northern Africa don’t want the opening of the base. The subject was addressed in a previous post.

European Union wants to build a free trade deal with ECOWAS (Economic Community of West African States) – in english. This agreement could link one of the wealthiest zone of the world with the poorest countries of the world. This deal might not be negotiated in equal terms. Europe could have total access to the ECOWAS countries…

Death of Ousmane Sembène (see picture) – in english and french. Born in Casamance Ousmane Sembène(Senegal), he was the first african film director to have an international recognition. Review of his career and his life. He wrote 5 novels, 5 short story book, and 14 films. He died on June 10th 2007.

How the arab world ignores Darfur – in english. Analysis of an article from the New Internationalist (“Salaam darfur”) who criticizes the heavy silence and denial from the Arab world regarding the events occuring in Darfur. It was written by two arabic human rights activists: Moataz El Fegiery and Ridwan Ziyada.

Interview with Béatrice Umutesi author of the book: “Surviving the slaughter. The ordeal of a Rwandan refugee in Zaïre” – in french. Mrs Umutesi is a former Rwandan refugee who fled the genocide and went to Zaïre (today called Democratic Republic of Congo). She worked for an NGO before fleeing to Zaïre. She discovered that the Rwandan Patriotic Front (FPR), the liberation movement in Rwanda who’s now in power, also perpetrated mass murders against the Hutus during the genocide. The situation in Rwanda was therefore more complex than what the international medias depicted. Oddly enough, it’s the FPR Mrs Umutesi had to run from. She fled to Zaïre. But the war caught on her with Rwandan troops crossing the border and attacking refugee camps. She had to run into the jungle and walk 2000 km to find a safe place!

June 20th

Show entirely in english.

Comments on the talks between the Polisario and Morocco under United Nations’ auspices – in english. Talks were held between Morocco and Polisario front with observers from Algeria and Mauritania. They were held following a resolution from April 2007. So far, they lead to nothing concrete and they will continue in August 2007. Meanwhile, a generation of refugees still live in Algeria and most of them were born there and have never seen Western Sahara.

Oil found in Ghana – in english. Ghana hopes to exploit its oil without falling into mismanagement.

AIDS and development in Africa – in english. AIDS and development are treated negatively in Africa. AIDS isn’t just a health issue; it hinders economic development and social capabilities. Even in a rich african country like Botswana, it can be a really serious problem.

General strikes in South Africa – english. South Africa enters its 18-19th day of general strike as the unions and the government can’t find an agreement. Reports from the field are presented.

Voici un court vidéo d’Ousmane Sembène recevant “l’Akira Kurosawa” award au Festvial de film de SanFrancisco en 1993. Here is a short video of Ousmane Sembène receiving the Akira Kurosawa award at the 1993 San Francisco International Film Festival:

Du pétrole au Ghana!/Oil found in Ghana

Le Courrier International reprend une dépêche du Accra Daily News: on a trouvé du pétrole au Ghana:

“Thank God, oil at last, thank God” (“Merci Seigneur, enfin du pétrole, merci Seigneur”). Ainsi titre le journal ghanéen Accra Daily Mail.
Et pour cause, cinq compagnies pétrolières, américaines et britanniques, viennent de découvrir des gisements de pétrole offshore dans les zones d’exploration de Mahogany-1, dans l’ouest du Ghana. C’est une première dans le pays, qui suscite bien des espoirs. Grâce à cette découverte, “le secteur de l’énergie, qui, il y a peu, était tourné en dérision sur la scène politique, éclaire soudain le futur d’une lueur nouvelle”, souligne l’Accra Daily Mail.
Pour le président ghanéen, John Kufuor, cela devrait relancer l’économie du pays. Il voit déjà le Ghana faire partie de la même lignée que des pays producteurs de pétrole comme le Nigeria et l’Angola. Car non seulement les compagnies confient qu’elles ont trouvé du pétrole en grande quantité dans les eaux ghanéennes, mais, en outre, elles assurent qu’il est d’excellente qualité. Toujours selon les explorateurs pétroliers, il est possible que l’exploitation de ces gisements commence cette année. En attendant, les compagnies continuent leur prospection, dans l’espoir de trouver d’autres champs pétrolifères au Ghana.

Il faut par contre préciser, selon Ouestaf.com, que

les réserves sont de l’ordre de 300 à 600 millions de barils mais le premier baril ne devrait sortir des puits que dans quelques années.

According to the Accra Daily Mail, oil has been found in Ghana.

Accra Daily Mail:

It is nature, through dwindling rainfall, that has brought the Akosombo Dam almost to its knees, supplying only a fraction of its capacity and crating an “energy crisis” in Ghana. It is nature, paradoxically, this time, through the bowels of the earth that is promising a major solution. Ghana’s energy sector, which barely only a few hours ago was the source of much derision and political point-scoring, all of a sudden, is the shining star of the future; the source of optimism.

Yesterday Ghana’s President, John Agyekum Kufuor received a delegation from Kosmos Energy. Subject: Oil.

Kosmos is one of the five companies exploring for oil in the West Cape Three Points of the country’s territorial waters.

The delegation was at the Castle to share with the President and the nation, the happy news of their discovery of oil in substantial quantities.

Mr. James Musselman, Chief Executive Officer of Kosmos, announced that the company had made what it believed to be a significant oil discovery at the Mahogany Number One, in water depths of about 1,320 meters (4,330 feet).

“We’ve encountered 885 feet of gross hydrocarbons with a net pay of 312 feet. This is a very significant discovery but I am going to beg your patience as we have been talking with the Ministers and GNPC to ask your patience because we are looking at how we are going to go about developing it. I know this is an exciting moment for the country and an exciting moment for us too but we have high expectations.

We are extremely optimistic of where this is going to lead Ghana and certainly our country is going forward… We obviously have a lot more work to do, this is just a tip of the iceberg so we get a lot more to do before we can specifically give you specific details” he said.

Mr. Brian Maxted, Vice President of Kosmos, said the discovery is indeed significant based on three factors: “First, we have encountered oil in substantial column in a well of 312 feet and that is not a small column; it’s a significant column in the context of not just Ghana but certainly West Africa. The second thing is that the host reservoir on which this oil is contained is of excellent quality and thirdly the oil at a first glance appears to be of premium quality”.

President Kufuor, in his remarks, said his confidence is strengthened with the discovery that the hit made is in significant proportions, likening Ghana’s situation to what has been found in Nigeria and Angola.

The president talked about the impact of the discovery to Ghanaian especially at this moment when “the country is going through a crisis [energy] that has been exploited by Ghanaians along the political scene. Some talk as if the country is on the threshold of doom. But today you have come to tell us that Ghana at long last has hit oil more likely in large quantities.

This is a message I believe Ghanaians should welcome and pray that you succeed in your continued effort so that Ghana will not become a beggar nation in the petroleum sector.”

Finally, it would seem then, Ghana is at last going to have some self-sufficiency in the “black gold”.

The President said the good news should tell all Ghanaians and all people of good will towards Ghana that “we have the silver lining in our clouds and that the pessimists lurking in the dark praying that this country will go down will be put to shame”.

He pledged the government’s continued support for the project and advised the company to be careful in its operations. “We are with you and we would urge you to take very good care of your operations here. This one I would insist on. You shouldn’t allow any one who has no business to do over there to be there; kick them out”, he said.

Mr. Maxted said discoveries of this nature of which there are a number in Africa takes somewhere between 3 and 5 years to bring into production. He said the project is going to involve several wells and is going to face some operational difficulties. He cited in particular what he termed as a “tight market” for rigs within the petroleum industry at the present time “because of current activities around the world”.

He said “it is possible we start this year or probably next year but you are assured Kosmos will be pursuing all options open to it to try and accelerate the pace…We are going to make more explorations in order to find more oilfields for Ghana. We are very pleased as a young company to find what others couldn’t find in the last twenty or thirty years”.

For those who think this discovery means another curse for Ghana, Kufuor answered to the BBC:

[Kuofor] dismissed suggestions that Ghana may follow in the footsteps of other countries that have mismanaged their oil wealth.

“Some are doing it well and I assure you if others failed, Ghana will succeed because this is our destiny to set the good pace for where we are. So we’re going to use it well,” he said.

“We’re going to really zoom, accelerate, and if everything works, which I pray will happen positively, you come back in five years, and you’ll see that Ghana truly is the African tiger, in economic terms for development.”

Émission Amandla du 9 mai 2007/ Amandla show from May 9th 2007

Voici les thèmes qui ont été abordés pendant l’émission Amandla du 9 mai dernier sur les ondes de CKUT 90.3FM (Montréal). Vous pouvez la télécharger ici (lien valide pour deux mois seulement).

Interview avec la présidente d’AMARC-Africa (World Association ofGrace Githaiga Community Broadcasters (AMARC) Africa): Grace Githaiga (photo ci-contre) – en anglais. Elle est aussi directrice-exécutive d’Econews Africa. Elle nous parle de l’impact des radios communautaires en Afrique de l’Est (Ouganda, Kenya, Tanzanie). Elles opèrent dans différents contextes politiques et abordent les sujets liés à la justice sociale.

Analyse sur une division au sein du parti d’opposition zimbabwéen, le MDC – en anglais. Analyse tirée du New-York Times. Le Movement for Democratic Change vit un tumulte interne, alors que la situation sur le terrain s’aggrave. En effet, depuis longtemps déjà, la population du Zimbabwe est affamée et rien n’est fait pour améliorer sa condition (voir Zimonline).

Mini-revue de la musique ghanéenne – en anglais.

Les agro-industries, nourrir la planète ou gonfler les profits?- en français. Analyse de l’industrie agro-alimentaire tirée du site d’Agoravox. On s’inquiète de la mainmise des multinationales de l’alimentation qui contrôlent la chaîne alimentaire et qui transforment la faim en marché.

Scandale à la Banque Mondiale – en français. Analyse du pétrin dans lequel Paul Wolfowitz, président de la Banque Mondiale s’est mis.
Here are the subjects that were addressed in the May 9th Amandla radio show on CKUT 90.3 FM (Montreal). You can download the show here (link valid for two months only).

Interview with the president of l’AMARC-Africa (World Association of Community Broadcasters (AMARC) Africa): Grace Githaiga (see picture above) – in english. She’s also the executive director of Econews Africa. She talks about the impacts of community radios in eastern Africa (Uganda, Kenya and Tanzania). They operate in different political contexts and are located in places where there are no other radios. They address social justice issues which makes them popular and the public response is important.

Mini-review on music in Ghana – in english.

Analysis of a split within the MDC, the zimbawean opposition party – in english. Taken from the New-York Times. A split occurs within the MDC (Movement for Democratic Change) while the situation in Zimbawe worsen. People are starving and nothing seems to be done.

The agrobusiness, feeding the world or pumping up profits ? – in french. Analysis of the agrobusiness from the Agoravox website. The influence of that industry is worrying. The agro-multinationals control the food chain and turns hunger into a market.

Scandal at the Worldbank – in french. Analysis of the trouble that Paul Wolfowitz, president of the Worldbank, has fallen into.

Rumeurs: Barrick Gold achèterait Newmont Mining/ Rumors: Barrick Gold could buy Newmont Mining

(Liens en anglais/ links in english)

Une nouvelle économique d’importance pour le continent africain vient de paraître. Par contre, on demeure au stade des rumeurs. La compagnie minière canadienne, Barrick Gold, première productrice d’or au monde, pourrait acheter sa principale rivale, l’américaine Newmont Mining (liens aux sites de Forbes et du Denver Post). Barrick réfute cette rumeur alors que Newmont Mining demeure silencieuse. Les marchés semblent favorables à une telle fusion puisque l’action de Newmont a monté Vendredi dernier.

Il faut savoir que Barrick Gold et Newmont possèdent plusieurs sites miniers en Afrique, au Ghana et en Tanzanie, les plus grands producteurs d’or du continent après l’Afrique du Sud:

Barrick Gold; sur 27 mines en opérations, elle exploite trois grands sites en Tanzanie:Barrick Gold Bulyanhulu, North Mara et Tulawaka JV. Le continent africain compte pour 23% des réserve d’or de l’entreprise.

Newmont Mining Corporation; elle a deux mines africaines en opération, toutes deux au Ghana: Ahafo et Akyem.

NewmontIl faut savoir que Barrick et Newmont sont impliquées dans plusieurs projets d’exploration minière sur le continent africain. Déjà considérées séparément comme des géantes par les États du continent qui font affaires avec elles (avec le Ghana et la Tanzanie en première ligne), quelle sera la nature de la relation lorsqu’une méga-entreprise “Barrick-Newmont” verra le jour? Sachez que, selon le dernier rapport annuel de Newmont (2005; pdf téléchargeable ici), ses revenus d’opération étaient de 374 millions de dollars US. Les revenus nets de Barrick Gold étaient de 401 millions en 2005 (dernier rapport ici – pdf). Les actifs des deux entreprises se comptent en milliards de dollars. Cela signifie qu’il existe une asymétrie flagrante dans les pouvoirs de négociation entre l’État et l’entreprise étrangère…

An important economic news item for the African continent just came out. But it could only be a rumor. The Canadian gold mining giant, Barrick Gold, world’s first gold producer, could buy it’s main rival, the american Newmont Mining Corp. (links: ForbesDenver Post). Barrick denies the rumor and Newmont remains silent. But the market showed positive signs for such a merger since the stock value of Newmont went up last Friday.

It’s important to know that Barrick and Newmont operate several mining sites on the African continent, in Ghana and Tanzania, the two biggest gold producers of Africa after South Africa:

Barrick Gold; from the 27 mines the company has, 3 are in Tanzania: Bulyanhulu, North Mara and Tulawaka JV. The african continent represents 23% of the total gold reserves Barrick has.

Newmont Mining Corporation; the company operates two african mines: Ahafo and Akyem, both in Ghana.

Both companies are also involved in several exploration projects throughout the continent. Already considered as giants seperately by the African States who deals with them (with Ghana and Tanzania on the front line), what will be the nature of the relation involving a “mega-Barrick-Newmont” company? We must know that, according to Newmont’s last yearly financial report, in 2005 (download pdf here), the company’s operation revenues were 374 millions dollars US. Barrick’s net revenues were 401 millions the same year (last report here – pdf). The assets of both companies are calculated in billions of dollars. All this means that there is a blatant asymmetry between the negociation powers of the African States and Barrick Gold/Newmont.