ChevronTexaco Addresses Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative
LONDON, June 17, 2003 - Speaking today before the Multistakeholder Conference of the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative in London, U.K., Sam Laidlaw, ChevronTexaco Executive Vice President of Business Development, outlined criteria that are necessary to achieve "meaningful and achievable" progress in the challenge of establishing greater transparency in the accounting for and management of revenues generated by oil, gas and mining extraction.
In addressing the conference, Laidlaw said, "There have been many transparency 'change initiatives' put forward over the past few years, and a constant message from our company has been that for any of these initiatives to be meaningful and achievable, they must meet three fundamental criteria.
"Firstly, any transparency process must honor the sanctity of contracts, because any actions or initiatives that would undercut this most fundamental building block of global commerce would also fatally undermine economic growth, social development and prosperity.
"Secondly, this needs to continue as an inclusive process, without a unilateral focus on companies. We have to acknowledge that the fundamental issue is the need to balance both sides of the oil, gas and mining revenue ledger sheet: the payments by companies into the government treasuries, against an accounting of receipts of those funds by the various components of that government. By the same token, host government participation in the process is essential. We cannot - and we will not - act unilaterally without the full consent and participation of our partners in government.
"Thirdly, the process as we move forward must remain voluntary. This ensures a level playing field, since market-oriented mandatory 'fixes' applied to public companies often won't affect many of the world's largest oil players. At the same time, we should be mindful of past lessons that attempting to dictate to governments how to behave is often neither particularly productive nor reflective of unique cultural differences."
ChevronTexaco is the second largest U.S.-based energy company and the fifth largest publicly traded integrated oil and gas company in the world, based on market capitalization. Headquartered in San Ramon, Calif., the company is involved in every aspect of the energy industry, including exploration, production, refining, equity gas marketing and transportation, power generation and energy services.
Updated: June 2003