The Sustainability in the Extractive Industries Conference was birthed in conjunction with the Deputy High Commission of Canada in October 2012, in Lagos. The Sustainability in the Extractive Industries (SITEI) Conference is an annual workshop, established and organised by CSR-in-Action, to bring together key stakeholders to discuss critical issues in the industries and stimulate meaningful exchange of ideas and best practices among key stakeholder groups and industry experts. Over the years, the reach of the conference has continued to grow, and the conference is now a highly-anticipated event yearly. Annually, the conference is organised in partnership with key stakeholders in the industries, some of which include, The Nigeria Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI), Federal Ministry of Mines and Steel Development (FMMSD), and Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC).
SITEI from Inception
SITEI 1, 2012: Managing Your Value Chain
The 1st SITEI conference was jointly organized by the Deputy High Commission of Canada and CSR-in-Action at the Oriental Hotel Lagos, with special guests including H.E Chris Cooter, High Commissioner, Canada, Marcello DiFranco, Deputy High Commissioner, Chris Ogbechie, Chairman Diamond Bank, Carlos Rojas-Arbulu, Senior Trade Commissioner, Canada, Deji Haastrup, GM, Chevron, David Tudor, MD, Nexen, HRH Prof Walter Ollor, Ogoni King.
Drawing from country experiences and case studies, speakers from both Nigeria and Canada discussed CSR, sustainable techniques and benefits to the corporate organisation, host community and larger society within the extractive industries. These enabled participants have a better understanding of the concept of sustainability and, ultimately, how it works for the benefit of everyone concerned.
Some of the topics for discussion included: ‘Importance of the Value Chains within the Extractive Industries’, ‘Transparency & Accountability’ and ‘The Role of Government’.
Together, Canadian investors and Nigerian actors can make the CSR strategies in the extractive industries work to the benefit of Nigerian citizens. But it does require a demonstrated commitment from everyone
SITEI 2, 2013: Policy, Affirmative Action and Sustained Growth
The 2nd SITEI conference was themed Policy, Affirmative Action and Sustained Growth. BusinessDay partnered the second conference which held on November 7th 2013.
It focused on current challenges concerning implementation of policies to promote long term unity and development, by stimulating a meaningful exchange of ideas and best practices among key stakeholder groups and industry experts with a view to identifying effective strategies for improved development within the industries and local communities.
Dr. Obiageli Ezekwesili, Former Minister of Steel & Mining/Vice President of the World Bank, Africa Region; Zainab Ahmed (Mrs.), Executive Secretary, Nigerian Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI), represented by Obiageli Onuorah; Dr. Glenn Bestall, Vice President, QHSSEC, Seven Energy Nigeria.
Any society that is permanently resident in the whole of the extractive industries has not in any way gone beyond primary production level of development.
It was a well organized event. It is like a national conference.
SITEI 3, 2014: Local Content Participation, Accountability and Transparency
The 3rd SITEI addressed nagging issues that have threatened to stagnate the local content drive, such as quality of local content players - vendors, contractors and business men – who could play more active and dominant roles in the extractive industries. The conference featured workshops with a potpourri of sustainable solutions provided to enforce the key objectives.
To drive youth and mass participation in entrepreneurship, skills development and in other activities within the Extractive Industries, CSR-in-Action introduced an Essay and Logo Design competition.
One important outcome from SITEI 2013 was the creation of an advocacy partnership with the Forum for Oil and Gas Diversification (FOGARD), a Ford Foundation funded Working Group.
Speakers included John Momoh, Chairman, Channels TV, Fidel Pepple, Immediate Past Acting Group General Manager, NNPC-NAPIMS, Austin Avuru, MD, Seplat, Emeka Ene, Chairman, Petroleum Association Technology of Nigeria (PETAN), and many more.
The body must be unwavering in considering Nigeria content as the most important element…The most pragmatic means of achieving sustainability is diversification. Let us start now to extract more of the several solid minerals in a complete value chain process and broaden our income base, create more jobs and develop greater capacity
SITEI 4, 2015: Policy, Affirmative Action and Sustained Growth
The 4th SITEI addressed issues hampering the development of the extractive industries. Issues identified include lack of incentives to encourage the mining sectors, political uncertainty, insufficient and poor data required to give confidence of real investment among others.
One of the outcomes of the SITEI was some key recommendations highlighted by contributors to aid in harnessing the potential in the mining sector which included; the need for the immediate development of mining ports across the country; increased accessibility and awareness of the funds available to the extractive industries; the development and enforcement of a legal, regulatory and investment friendly environment; aggressive data collection, analysis and dissemination to showcase the opportunities in the sector; increased efforts to promote accountability through a transparent reporting process driven by institutions like NEITI, the designing of an inclusive Environmental Impact Assessment Act to take care of host communities, among others.
Speakers included Honorable Abubakar Bwari, Minister of State for Solid Minerals, Prof. Wale Omole, Chairman, CSR-in-Action/Chairman, Editorial Board, Guardian, Dr Ogbonnaya Orji, Acting Executive Secretary NEITI, and many more.
It is important to pursue an inclusive collaborative effort that will shift attention to unlock the potential in the solid minerals sector.” There should be an inter-agency collaboration between legislature, civil society, companies and the government to deliver better governance and reform for the extractive sector.
SITEI 5, 2016: Revitalising the Nigerian Economy Beyond Oil: Prospects for a Thriving, Export Driven Extractive Sector
The 5th Sustainability in the Extractive Industries Conference 2016 was held on 15 November, 2016, in Abuja, capital city of Nigeria, together with key private and public sector stakeholders, and was themed Revitalising the Nigerian Economy Beyond Oil: Prospects for a Thriving Export-Driven Extractive Sector. The theme was borne out of the desire to optimise the productivity of the extractive industries in order to attract foreign direct investment (FDI), induce capital retention and boost the National GDP.
The 5th SITEI conference was organised in partnership with the Nigerian Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI), the Federal Ministry of Mines and Steel Development (MMSD), the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), and had Ford Foundation as the keynote sponsor. A major high point of the conference was the launch of the Sustainable Extractive and Energy Principles (SEEP); a guidance document which seeks to put critical plans, structures and principles in place for the seamless operation of mineral resource-mining and energy operations, including renewable energy.
Speakers included Dr Kayode Fayemi (Hon. Minister of Mines and Steel Development) represented by Prof. Okey Onyejekwe (Senior Special Adviser to the Minister), Bekeme Masade (Founder/Convener, SITEI), O'Seun Odewale (Special Adviser Media to Minister of Mines and Steel Development), Prof. Olugbenga Okunlola (President, Nigerian Mining and Geosciences Society) and many others.
Many of the topics being addressed during SITEI are priority areas that the Mining Roadmap seeks to address.