New report: British companies leading new ‘scramble for Africa’ worth $1 trillion

11 July 2016 - 7:00pm
Press release

British companies, aided and abetted by the UK government, are at the forefront of a new ‘scramble for Africa’, according to a new report published today by War on Want.

The report, The New Colonialism: Britain’s scramble for Africa’s energy and mineral resources, reveals that as many as 101 companies listed on the London Stock Exchange (LSE), the majority of which are British, have mining operations in Africa and control resources worth in excess of $1 trillion.

British companies now control Africa’s key mineral resources of gold, platinum, diamonds, copper, oil, gas and coal, and the UK government is using its power and influence to give these companies increasing access to the continent’s wealth.

Saranel Benjamin, International Programmes Director at War on Want, said:

“The African continent is today facing a new colonial invasion, no less devastating in scale and impact than the one it suffered during the nineteenth century. 

“It’s a scandal that Africa’s wealth in natural resources is being seized by foreign, private interests, whose operations are leaving a devastating trail of social, environmental and human rights abuses in their wake.

“For too long, British companies have been at the forefront of the plunder, yet rather than rein in these companies, successive UK governments are actively championing them through trade, investment and tax policies. It is time British companies and the UK government were held to account.”

War on Want supports the call, by mining affected communities in sub-Saharan Africa, for mining revenues to stay in the countries where they are mined; for raw materials to be processed in the countries where they are mined; and for governments to act to protect the rights of people affected by the extractives industry rather than protecting companies’ profits.

 

Notes to editors

For further information or interviews, contact Ross Hemingway on +44 7983 550728

The new War on Want report, The New Colonialism: Britain’s scramble for Africa’s energy and mineral resources can be downloaded here.

 

Latest news

Morning Star: IMF & World Bank admit to inequality crisis but continue to create it

23 October 2017 - 10:45am

The World Bank and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) have been forced to admit to the crisis of soaring inequality. But it is the policies they have spent 40 years forcing on the world's poor that led us here. This charm offensive is unlikely to signal a significant shift in thier approach but it may be an indication that cracks in the system run deeper than they appear. 

By Marienna Pope-Weidemann, War on Want 

Read more

Migrant and Precarious Workers are Winning Britain a Pay Rise!

17 October 2017 - 3:00pm

Migrant and precarious workers are winning Britain a pay rise. Migrant and precarious workers are leading the fights to get organised. They are tackling precarious work, outsourcing and privatisation, the real drivers of low pay and insecurity at work.  Despite facing stigmatisation by a media that too often blames them for low pay and insecurity at work, they are standing up for themselves and winning. Their struggles tell an important story about how Britain can win a pay rise: by standing with migrant workers and ending precarious contracts.

Read more

Join the conversation

Our partner, #land defender Angelica Oritz from #Colombia on impacts of mega mining projects @MujeresWayuuhttps://t.co/3Y2yZDjG7H 4 hours 23 min ago
@MElmaazi @MariennaPW Yes sorry we replaced the original tweet with a working link you can now find on our feed! 9 hours 2 min ago
.@DHgovuk We're #patientsnotpassports - Access to healthcare is fundamental human right, regardless of your status… https://t.co/FlkviH7p5U 9 hours 4 min ago