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Myanmar: Global Witness report on oil & gas companies' beneficial ownership


In February 2014, Global Witness sent information requests to companies that were awarded onshore oil and gas blocks in Myanmar in October 2013 – asking for the names of the individuals who are at the top of their ownership chains, and details of any owners with high-level political connections. This was followed by further efforts to obtain responses. Their findings are in the report, “The shell starts to crack? Real owners of Myanmar’s oil and gas blocks come forward”, linked below. Related reports are also included.

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13 October 2014

Global Witness says 25 oil & gas companies in Myanmar have set “global precedent" by publishing beneficial ownership

Author: Global Witness

“Myanmar takes global lead on company ownership transparency”, 9 October 2014

25 oil and gas companies in Myanmar have set a global precedent by publishing who their real owners are, said Global Witness in a new report…In June 2014, Global Witness raised concerns that secrecy surrounding company ownership could result in the money being lost to corruption. Anonymous or secret company ownership structures are routinely used across the world to hide illicit activities from public scrutiny and law enforcement…In response to the Global Witness survey, all companies investing in 17 of[newly awarded oil and gas] blocks have now declared who ultimately owns and controls them…However, a hard core of 18 companies have not yet declared their ownership…[refers to A-1 Mining, Apex Geo Services, Berlanga Holding, BG Group, Brunei National Petroleum, Canadian Foresight Group, CAOG s.a.r.l, Century Bright, Chevron, ConocoPhillips, Eni, IGE, JSOC Bashneft, Machinery & Solutions, Mercator Petroleum, Mitsui Oil Exploration, MPRL E&P, Myanmar Petroleum E&P, Oilmax Energy, Oil India, Oil Star Management Services, ONGC Videsh, Ophir Energy, Pacific Hunt Energy, Parami Energy Development, Petroleum Exploration (PVT), Petronas, Precious Stone Mining, Petrovietnam Exploration Production, PTTEP, Reliance Industries, ROC Oil, Royal Marine Engineering, Shell, Siren E&P, Smart E&P International, Statoil, Tap Oil, Total, Transcontinental Group, United National Resources Development Services, UNOG, Win Precious Resources, Woodside Energy, Young Investment Group]

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13 October 2014

Hailing Myanmar as ‘world leader in transparency’ may be premature, says analysts, citing crony companies’ reluctance to disclose information

Author: Feliz Solomon, Irrawaddy (Myanmar)

“Is Burma a ‘Global Leader’ of Corporate Transparency?”, 10 October 2014

Newly disclosed corporate ownership data has prompted one international advocacy group to label Burma as a “world leader” in transparency and urge the government to maintain pressure on industry stakeholders as the country moves toward achieving global standards. Transparency watchdog Global Witness…published a 30-page breakdown of 25 foreign and domestic oil and gas companies operating in Burma that have—upon being solicited by the group—published full or partial information about their “ultimate beneficial ownership,” which has been defined as the individual person or persons “right at the very top of the chain.”…[S]ome analysts argue that proclaiming the notoriously corrupt nation as a success story and a potential precedent may be premature, speaking more to the inadequate state of global transparency than to Burma’s accomplishments…The Global Witness report focused specifically on gas and oil companies freshly permitted to work in Burma, and does not yet examine the transparency of any other sector, which some suggest could offer misleading conclusions about investment and industry in Burma on the whole…

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