Reports from neighbouring Democractic Republic of Congo (DRC) indicate that the state mining company Gécamines is undergoing an intensive investigation.
Details reveal that the General Inspectorate of Finance (IGF) is taking a keen interest in the mining company, one of the pillars of the Congolese economy.
This large survey, which has just been launched, covers a period from 2010 to date.
According to reliable information, this investigation covers the conditions of sale or transfer of Gécamines’ mining assets for the benefit of private actors, the leasing contracts signed by the latter on its mining assets and, finally, its results over the last ten years.
Gécamines has been at the centre of controversies since President Felix Tshisekedi took power and promising to fight endemic corruption in the central African nation.
Gécamines — once one of the world’s biggest copper producers until years of mismanagement nearly bankrupted the company.
Alleged corruption in mining transactions in DRC has led to financial sanctions and multiple ongoing investigations by law-enforcement agencies around the world.
For example, recently a transfer of lucrative cobalt and copper assets by Gécamines enabled a little-known investor to make U$40 million within weeks.
The transaction and almost immediate resale of control of the assets to Eurasian Resources Group Sarl is the latest deal in DRC to face scrutiny by anti-graft campaigners.
On Nov. 7, 2018, state miner Gecamines leased rights to process billions of dollars worth of copper and cobalt reserves to Evelyne Investissement SAU, an entity Berros had created two months earlier, according to a copy of the agreement, Congolese corporate records and an ERG filing.
In exchange, Evelyne made an initial $10 million payment, the documents show. Later in the same month, Gécamines signed off on Berros’ sale of 51% of Evelyne to ERG for $50 million, according to ERG’s annual report.