Get to know us!
The International Alliance on Natural Resources in Africa (IANRA) is a global network of organisations that combine community organising, research and evidence-based advocacy to strive for more just and sustainable use of natural resources in Africa.
The current network includes 51 non-governmental and community-based organisations, mostly in Africa, with an international linkage in the Netherlands. National groupings of IANRA members can have up to 30 member organisations, including civil society and social movements.
We seek to create a united Africa where poor and excluded people can enjoy their rights to equitable benefits from natural resources in a sustainable way.
To this end, we enable social, environmental and economic justice in the natural resources sector towards the empowerment of excluded communities through research, lobbying, advocacy and campaigning.
This continent, with 600 million hectares of uncultivated arable land, holds the world’s greatest known reserves of minerals. But Africa suffers from the resource curse, with many communities affected by mining ending up worse off than before the mining began. Entire villages have been forcibly removed from their ancestral land, in many cases with no replacement land. Members of the communities have been arrested and imprisoned for protecting the only asset they have, their land, which is most often their only source of livelihood.
In addition, rivers and land have been contaminated from mining processes and communities have lost access to water. The African Charter on Human and People’s Rights, established to guarantee these communities’ rights, is often violated.
Governments are burdened with the high costs of subsidising natural resource operations and profits. They also lose revenue due to tax evasion, tax breaks and revenue hiding by companies. Governments use extensive state resources to provide health care for thousands of mine workers and affected mining community members, clean up polluted areas and rehabilitate mined land.
The question remains whether the mining revenue obtained by governments equals the subsidisation provided by them.