Sunday, April 22, 2012

Bahrian: The Crackdown Continues

Normally, an island country with an area a quarter of the size of Rhode Island and a native population roughly the size of Oklahoma City would be a triviality in international politics. It's been a while since Trinidad and Tobago consistently made international headlines. But Bahrain is not a normal county.

For starters, the island is located in the Persian Gulf, right along one of the world's two most important shipping lanes. Since the 1990's the island has housed the U.S's Fifth Fleet, which helps the U.S control the shipping of petrol from the oil rich Gulf region. This is particularly important given the island's proximity to Iran.

The island is important for another reason as well. Shia Islam is followed by only about 15% of Muslims. However, in the Persian Gulf region, Shiites form the vast majority of the population. Iran is Shiite, Iraq is majority Shiite, as is much of Kuwait, and the oil producing regions of Saudi Arabia. Shiites have an expression that God must look favorably on the Shiites, because wherever there are Shiites, there is also oil. Of course, while the population may be Shiite, the oil producing regions are ruled by Sunnis.The royal families of Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, the U.A.E, and Qatar are all Sunni. So is Bahrain's ruling Khalifa clan. Like much of the rest of the Gulf, however, the population is overwhelmingly Shiite.

Needless to say, having a Shiite majority ruled over by a Sunni elite has created tensions. Major, protracted, and widespread protest movements are a periodic feature of the island's politics, and the government is adept at repression. For thirty years, the government retained Ian Henderson, a British torture expert, as head of National Security Agency. Torture, massacres, police repression, assassination, kidnappings, and indiscriminate violence are all instruments of government policy. During the protests of the Arab Spring, the King even outsourced this work to the security forces of other countries, and invited foreign armies to deploy to the island to repress demands for democracy and equality. 

The regime is brutal, sectarian, and undemocratic. It is also enthusiastically supported by the United States, which has designated the country a Major non-Nato Ally, and supplied it with weapons, training, and diplomatic support.

The U.S has a very serious concern that, should democracy take hold in Bahrain, it would set an example for other Shiites of the region, which would jeopardize the U.S allied despot who control the region's oil resources, and also strengthen the hand of Iran. Victory for democracy in Bahrain would also likely lead to the expulsion of the U.S's Fifth Fleet, which would be a significant setback to control of the Straits of Hormuz.

So, while human rights activists are being abducted and tortured by the police, as prisoners of conscience are fasting to the death, as security forces and foreign armies are massacring demonstrators, as half the country's population has taken to the streets to demand democracy, only to be attacked by the police, as the doctors and nurses who treat injured protestors are put on trial before military courts, and thousands of activists are being abducted for torture. As  the specter of a government at war with its own people rises over this small island kingdom, the American government remains adamant in its support for the ruling family. The closest the White House has come to criticizing the government, is to condemn the violence from "both sides", and then consider selling additional weapons to the government.  As France's former foreign minister Bernard Kouchner advised, "there is a permanent contradiction between human rights and the foreign policy of a state."

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Translation of Belgian Senate Inquiry into Illegal Exploitation of Congoles Wealth

The looting of Congo's wealth by its neighbors is one of the most unreported stories of the 21st century. Both in the popular press and in academia, there has been little discussion of the topic. Among the very few inquiries into the issues, the one held by the Belgian Senate is the most extensive. Surprisingly, it has never been published in English. Although my blog readers are welcome to look into the report, I'm publishing a (very rough Google) translation of the proceedings below so that they might be available to English speaking scholars:

Belgian Senate
SESSION OF 2002-2003

February 20, 2003
Parliamentary commission of inquiry to investigate the operation and legal and illegal trade of natural resources in the Great Lakes region in view of the present conflict and the involvement of Belgium


Records of public hearings

* GR 1 - Friday, November 30, 2001
Hearing of Mr. F. Reyntjens (AU) and Mrs Wickens, Tantalum-Niobium International Study Center
* GR 2 - Friday, November 30, 2001
Hearing of Mr. H. Leclercq and Mrs. P. Bouvier, Professor Emeritus (ULB)
* GR 4 - Friday, December 7, 2001
Hearing of Mr. J. Peleman, director of IPIS
* GR 5 - Friday, December 14, 2001
Hearing of Mr. Stefaan Marysse, Professor (AU), and Catherine André, researcher (AU and UCL)
* GR 6 - Friday, January 11, 2002
Hearing of Mr. Christian Dietrich, researcher (IPIS), diamond analyst
* GR 7 - Friday, January 11, 2002
Hearings of representatives of the Hoge Raad voor Diamant
o Mr. Charles Bornstein, president;
o Mr. Peter Meeus, Executive Director;
o Mr. Mark Van Bockstael, Director International Affairs
* GR 8 - Friday, January 18, 2002
Hearing of Mr Aldo Ajello, the Special Representative of the European Union for the Great Lakes
* GR 9 - Friday, February 8, 2002
Hearing of Professor J. Gorus (VUB)
* GR 10 - Friday, February 8, 2002
Hearing of Mrs. Annemie Neyts-Uyttebroeck, Minister Assistant Minister of Foreign Affairs
* GR 11 - Friday, February 22, 2002
Hearing of Mr. Francis Misser, journalist, co-author of "The gemmocraties. The political economy of African diamond "
* GR 13 - Friday, 1 March 2002
Hearing of Mr. Erik Kennes, a researcher at the African Institute (Africa Museum)
* GR 14 - Friday, 1 March 2002
Hearing of Mr. Deus Kagiraneza
* GR 15 - Friday, March 15, 2002
MM hearing. Cuvelier and Raeymaekers, IPIS the report "Supporting the War Economy In The DRC: European Companies & the Coltan Trade. Five Case Studies "in January 2002
* GR 17 - Friday, March 22, 2002
Hearing of Mr. Michel Van Herp, doctor, Nicolas Luc and Jean-Marc Biquet, Doctors without Borders, who presented the report "Access to care and violence in Congo - Results of five epidemiological surveys"
* GR 18 - Friday, April 26, 2002
Hearing of Mr Patrick Alley of Global Witness representative on the report "Branching Out: Zimbabwe's Resource Colonialism in Democratic Republic of Congo."
* GR 21 - Friday, May 17, 2002
Hearing of Mr. Marc Hoogsteyns journalist.
* GR 25 - Friday, May 31, 2002
Hearing of Mr. Guy Franceschi, an expert geologist
* GR 27 - Friday, June 7, 2002
Hearing of Mr. Emiel Leclair, Branch Manager, Alfred H. Knight Belgium
* GR 29 - Friday, June 14, 2002
Hearing of Mr. Gilbert Chartry, Chartered Geologist: historical overview of the diamond and Hugues Leclercq expert: setting the diamond in Congo
* GR 30 - Friday, June 14, 2002
Hearing of Mr. Luc Rombouts, Chartered Geologist: global economy and the role of diamonds in the Congo it
* GR 31 - Friday, June 21, 2002
Hearings of representatives of the Hoge Raad voor Diamant
o Mr. Peter Meeus, Executive Director;
o Mr. Mark Van Bockstael, Director International Relations.
* GR 32 - Friday, June 21, 2002
Hearing Professor Filip De Boeck, anthropologist
* GR 33 - Friday, June 28, 2002
Hearing of Mr. Mark Van Bockstael, Director International Relations of the Hoge Raad voor Diamant
* GR 34 - Friday, June 28, 2002
Hearing of Mr. Leslie Paesschierssens, Advisor, Brussels Licensing Department, and Ms. Frieda Coosemans, Deputy Advisor, Antwerp Licensing Department, Ministry of Economic Affairs
* GR 35 - Friday, July 5, 2002
Hearing of Mr. George Berghezan, senior researcher at Grip for Africa and the transport of weapons
* GR 37 - Friday, September 17, 2002
Hearing of Mr Stephen Denis, executive vice president of Umicore
* GR 38 - Wednesday, September 18, 2002
MM hearing. Christian and Yves Windelincx Vincke, Directors of the National Delcredere
* GR 41 - Thursday, September 19, 2002
Hearing of Mr. George A. Forrest, president of George Forrest International SA
* GR 43 - Tuesday, 1 October 2002
Hearing of Kimba M. George, President, and Mr. Robert Tshibob, Secretary General, Cokatom
* GR 44 - Tuesday, 1 October 2002
Hearing of Mr. Bernard de Gerlache de Gomery, president of the Chamber of Commerce, Industry and Agriculture Belgium-Luxembourg-Africa-Caribbean-Pacific
* GR 47 - Wednesday, October 23, 2002
Hearing of Mr. Johnny Cappelle, Inspector, Service Regulations diverse service Customs and Excise Department of Finance
* GR 49 - Friday, October 25, 2002
Hearing of Mr. Philippe de Moerloose, managing director of Demavia Airlines
* GR 50 - Wednesday, November 6, 2002
Hearing of Mr. Pierre Chevalier, MP
* GR 52 - Friday, November 8, 2002
Hearing of Mr. Jean-Claude Marcourt, Chief of Staff of the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Employment
* GR 53 - Friday, November 8, 2002
Hearing of Mr. Paul Van Goethem, Advisor, Office of the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs
* GR 58 - Monday, November 25, 2002
Hearing of Baron Maurice Velge, President, NV Polytra
* GR 60 - Thursday, November 28, 2002
o Mr. Jan Bayart, embassy secretary, department head "diamond cell," Department of Foreign Affairs, Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation;
o Mr. Koen Doen, Advisor, Office of the Deputy to the Minister of Foreign Affairs, in charge of Agriculture;
o Mr. Leslie Paesschierssens, Service Advisor licenses from the Department of Economic Affairs.
* GR 67 - Friday, December 6, 2002
Hearing of Mr. Alain Goetz, Tony Goetz & Zonen
* GR 71 - Friday, January 10, 2003
Hearing of Mr. Jean-Pierre Pauwels, Chairman of the Board of Directors of the National Ducroire

GR 1 - Friday, November 30, 2001
Hearing of Mr. F. Reyntjens (AU) and Mrs Wickens, Tantalum-Niobium International Study Center

(President: Mr. Andrew Geens)

Mr. F. Reyntjens. - I will try to sketch the outlines of geopolitical developments since 1996. The war continues today, albeit with less intensity, in fact, started in September-October 1996. The second Congo war, which erupted August 2, 1998, is actually an extension of the first.
A combination of two factors has resulted in the spectacular victory of Kabila and his alliance, which entered Kinshasa in May 1997 and returned to power with Mobutu.
The first factor is that black hole. (He means, on a map of Africa, the central region of the former Zaire) This was back in 1996 and remains today: a black hole. A country virtually without a state or a state that does not fulfill its basic functions. Boundaries clearly drawn here are in fact bogus and very porous. Formerly Zaire, the Congo is now a legal state, but not empirical.
Nature abhors a vacuum. This principle is also valid in geopolitics. When a State leaves a void and no longer fulfills its functions, this void is filled by other players who can play a positive role. Nongovernmental organizations or churches resume example a number of functions that the state does not, as the organization of education, small infrastructure, etc.. But there are other actors: the warlords, ethnic militias and foreign actors who benefit from the gap existing offshore operations to deploy both military and economic.
This brings us to the theme of your commission, the exploitation of Congolese very rich potential, especially by "entrepreneurs of insecurity."
The second factor in the success of Kabila and his alliance is the emergence of a formidable regional coalition. All players and all neighboring states and even non-adjacent are involved. The coalition was born and cyclical survives today on the basis of very simple reasoning that the enemy of my enemy is my friend. Everyone thinks in terms of self-interest, that is to say national, individual or group.
After the genocide in Rwanda in 1994, 1.2 million Rwandans fled to Congo, almost exclusively Hutu, sometimes armed. These armed elements were established in North Kivu, near Goma and Kivu around Bukavu Southern. From there they organized commando operations in the territory of Rwanda, which has created a problem of insecurity for the new regime in that country. These Hutu elements were supported by at least passive and sometimes active, the Mobutu regime. The enemy of my enemy is my friend! When Kabila, a creature of neighboring countries and especially in Rwanda, allegedly launched his rebellion, he is the enemy of Mobutu, and since it is the friend of the enemies of the Rwandan Hutu militias, namely, the choice of the alliance is quickly made.
Angola is a second example, but it might as well mention the Sudan, Uganda and Burundi. For 25 years, Angola is experiencing a bloody civil war. The Luanda regime is faced with the largest rebel movement still active in the region, Unita, supported very actively by Mobutu or less mercenary generals around him. The same reasoning applies here too: since Kabila is the enemy of Mobutu and Mobutu enemy of Angola, Angola supporting Kabila. When after the fall of Bunia, December 25, 1996, rebellion, mainly composed of Rwandan and Ugandan troops, monitoring a buffer zone rather limited in eastern Congo, the security problems of Uganda, Rwanda and Burundi is resolved. The Angolan military leaders and then to insist that advance farther west, because the security problems in Angola are not resolved by the establishment of this buffer zone in eastern Congo.
In May 1997, Kabila seized power and faces a great problem of internal legitimacy. It must take a visible distance himself from his Rwandan sponsors and to a lesser extent, Uganda.
The large Congo considers intolerable the idea of ​​being controlled by the small Rwanda. I call this syndrome Luxembourg. A strong anti-Luxembourg indeed be born in Germany if the country was occupied by Luxembourg or whether to participate in the leadership of Germany, Luxembourg supported a rebel movement seeking to take power. Originally, the Congo, it was not a racist sentiment, but he has become.
When Kabila took his distance from his sponsors East, another war broke out. The same problems have the same effects. Rwanda, Uganda and Burundi were again attacked from Congolese territory, and August 2, 1998, began a conflict that initially looked like a rehash of previous wars.
At that time, alliances have started to slip. This new war, which was only the continuation of the previous, was in fact not a reprint. The alliances have begun to change because the reasoning that the enemy of my enemy is my friend again played. When the Rwandans and Banyamulenge troops landed at Kitana and quickly controlled the Lower Congo, the Angolan army has turned against them, that is to say against their former allies, as in 1996-1997, Rwandans were part of the anti-Mobutu alliance. Angolan intelligence services were convinced that there are good contacts between UNITA and the rebel movement that was forming in the East. It later emerged they were right. Angola also knew that General Mobutu had gone to Kigali and feared that it makes the game of Unita. The rest is history. The war took a different turn. The advance of the various rebel movements backed by Uganda, Rwanda and, to a lesser extent, Burundi have been stopped on a line dividing the whole country. (He draws a line running roughly northwest to southeast) Angola and Zimbabwe have sent thousands of men in Congo and 11,000 Zimbabwean soldiers, one third of the army, are still Congolese territory. They do not think in terms of international law, human rights or sovereignty, but in terms of self-interest.
I turn to economic activities offshore. There were two interrelated phenomena, in my opinion frightening and highly visible in Central Africa, even if they exist on the continent: the criminalization and privatization of public spaces.
I give two examples of privatization of public spaces.
First there is the privatization of maintaining law and order. In fact, there is no law and no order. It would be better to speak of maintaining security and population control, even massacres. The function is normally provided by the state monopoly of legitimate violence. Ethnic militias of all stripes, rebel movements and foreign armies in Congo maintain a certain order allowing the economic exploitation of the territory.
Second, the privatization of the tax function. All kinds of taxes and fees are deducted. Being erected barricades on the road and it requires a certain amount to those who want to get from A to B. It is a form of tolls. For example, to transport vegetables from field to market, must pay 10% of their value.
Privatization has been partially met by security firms, in fact mercenaries, but much less "romantic" and more dangerous than the armies of mercenaries that were there previously. I think organizations such as Executive Outcomes or Sandline. This goes so far back as July 1997, the U.S. Defense Intelligence Agency organized a seminar on Privatization of peacekeeping in sub-Saharan Africa and attended by Tim Spicer, head of Sandline, MPRI employees, representatives and Diplomats in Angola and Uganda, and even nongovernmental organizations like Worldvision and the International Red Cross. This shows that in some countries, the privatization of security is to some extent accepted.
There is a criminalization of states and economies. Both Congolese territory in the border areas, more and more entrepreneurs are active in insecurity that can only function thanks to the absence of a state. In fact, they did not need much. They must be able to carve out an enclave, preferably outside of state control and without obligations to it. In addition, transportation routes, including air, must be protected. It does not take over because the exploitation of certain resources is still traditional and requires low technology. This is the case for coltan and diamonds.
If I insist particularly on the Great Lakes region, because this is your domain, but also elsewhere in Africa, certain criminal activities such as dumping of toxic waste are perfectly possible.
The criminalization of states and economies is clearly a threat to them and is still favored by a particular characteristic of African economies, which are mostly cash economies. Number of countries that have seen their banking system collapse, the only method of payment is cash. If a transaction leaves no trace, for example, because the diamonds or coltan are paid through a briefcase full of dollars is particularly easy to launder money from the arms trade, drugs, etc.. and this phenomenon has international repercussions.
In this context, we must keep in mind that all actors, state and non state, local, regional and national levels, not only think in terms of national interests - rarely - personal or group and therefore according to the principle that the enemy of my enemy is my friend, but also act accordingly. If you want to know why Mugabe Kagame or such act a certain way, just ask yourself what you would if you reason according to their logic. I'm sure you'll understand.
Remember, it is very rational actors. Often we underestimate that. They often seem irrational because they do not act as we would like. Human rights, the management of their countries, democratization and the fate of the population does not interest them, but they are very rational actors that balance costs and profits. This is one reason why these wars are prolonged. Indeed, war and instability, they relate ultimately much more than peace. A number of players in this region can therefore act as they please because of the absence of states, instability, porous borders and border economic and military activities. Their behavior will change only when we will make the war more costly and more financially attractive peace. We do too little.
I come to my final point. We will examine what should be the result of this commission which takes much time and energy. A highly operational approach is needed. You hear more from other witnesses. The book published by our center contains a lot of things on this subject, for example on the policy of two weights and two measures that the international community to practice against different players. Countries such as Rwanda and, until recently, Uganda, were treated with far more generosity from the international donor community so that their regimes, very questionable, do not respect the conditions they are in principle imposed. Zimbabwe, Congo or Burundi, for example have a much smaller international aid while Rwanda and Uganda are actually saving "aid driven.
When talking about growth rates in these countries, it is an externally-led growth which is not a local production. These countries are supported because their growth rates are favorable and, thus, these rates will further improve.
We must influence the cost-benefit analysis of these criminal actors - I do not hesitate to call them - that are Museveni, Kagame, Mugabe, Dos Santos, Kabila's father, and so on. We do as if they were heads of state, but in fact they are the lords of war that we must treat it as such. Only then we can influence their cost-benefits. I am a little more cautious with regard Buyoya. Kabila's son is also a bit more convenient, unless, quite simply, it sells better.
I think the inquiry will be difficult to learn much more about the phenomenon of looting of the Congo, simply because it does not afford. He has already spent a lot of things and we're not reinventing the wheel. There is the UN working but others have also done excellent work. I think of IPIS, which works in partnership with the CAP, "Partnership Africa Canada."
What the commission can do is focus on the involvement of Belgium in such activities and on the question of how we must respond. They also commit crimes against the laws of Belgium? Legislative initiatives should they eventually be taken?
An important question is how Belgium and the European Union manage the situation. I just quoted the policy of double standards. What is the impact of the strengthening or reduction of development cooperation on the behavior of some players? Does there be no bad signals? I have already referred to the very privileged treatment accorded to Rwanda. The country still enjoys a "credit post-genocide" which is no longer justified. Everything is permitted because there was genocide, as the State of Israel has long believed a permit because he had been the Holocaust. The reasoning is also often very similar.
Again, I think of some specific actors. My impression, for example, that our ambassador in Kigali, Mr. Lastchenko, is a real problem. He's gone native. He became somewhat honorary member of the RPF and our embassy in Kigali at the Rwandan regime sends signals very different from those originating with the Office of Foreign Affairs and other diplomatic posts. We therefore constantly sends mixed signals. Our ambassador in Kampala, M. Peeters, will see all the time required to correct or contradict the communications of his colleague Lastchenko. That's another topic for this review helpful commission.

Mr. Chairman. - Your statement raises many interesting questions. There are more questions than answers. One such issue is the link between the pursuit of war and trade. This raises the question of the relationship between "state", usually the warlords, and special interests.

Mr. Michiel Maertens (AGALEV). - I would like to focus specifically on private security FIRMS. Is there available data on the financing of these security companies? Do we know their names? Since when are they active? For whom do they work? Do they have links with companies or Belgian nationals? These data should allow us to determine whether, under Belgian law, these firms exceed the limits.

Mr. F. Reyntjens. - Many investigations have already been made in this respect, especially from Mr. Johan Peleman of IPIS and another of the Institute of Security Studies in Pretoria.
These activities are often funded by the proceeds of what is protected, so generally in kind. The Sandline, a British company that was active safety in Sierra Leone has paid herself in diamonds. Of course, these companies are still active in the areas where there are some good deals to be had.
In connection with the foregoing, I refer once more to military commercialism. The survey on this subject by Chris Dietrich showed that traders military, that is to say, those who interfere in economic activities, based more and more decisions on commercial considerations rather than strategic or tactics. Troops are deployed and remain in regions that contain raw materials. The withdrawal of troops from a foreign country is to a certain level, dictated by commercial considerations. These conditions make it difficult to withdraw troops because it involves a loss of income.
In addition to funding in kind, there is funding by governments. For me, it is clear that U.S. intelligence services maintain close ties with the MPRI. It was created by colonels and generals retired U.S. workers, of course, in close collaboration with organizations such as DIA, CIA, etc..
I can only cite the name of a Belgian company which can be regarded as a private security firm, namely the IDAS whose headquarters are located in one or another tax haven. I do not think there are others. In the 60's, Belgium has delivered the first generation of mercenaries. I refer to Colonel Christian Tavernier, who went to "fight" alongside Mobutu in the region of Kisangani. This phenomenon - rather romantic - but has disappeared completely.
I will pass on any cases to the Committee the documentation on this.

Mr. Chairman. - Mr. Peleman was invited to one of our upcoming auditions.
Could you provide us with the addresses of web sites related to the subject of the investigation.

Erika Thijs (CD & V). - Many of Zimbabwe troops in Congo are still present. They stay mainly for raw materials. Many leaders have, indeed, interest in Congolese mines. Companies do they trade with foreign powers, such as Zimbabwe's army, or only with people on the spot?

Mr. F. Reyntjens. - The second UN report speaks of Zimbabwe. The UN panel has addressed this issue in a summary manner, but correct.
Zimbabwe and Rwanda, the operations are institutional. In Uganda, however, it is much more individual initiative. In Zimbabwe, the institutionalization of practices operating organization is so thorough that the Zimbabwean army, Operation Sovereign Legitimacy (Osleg) has entered into a joint venture with Comiex. The company is a Comiex Kabila and not the Alliance. She was born in the late sixties, when Kabila was still in the bush. During the 1996-1997 war, before the arrival of Kabila in power, Miba, which has headquarters in Brussels, paid $ 3.5 million to an account of Comiex as a "contribution to the war effort. " A company like Osleg in Zimbabwe or the joint venture Cosleg illustrate the institutional nature of these operations. Zimbabwean senior officers are directly involved in these activities. This is one of the reasons why Zimbabwe, Mugabe or more accurately because the Zimbabwean parliament was not even informed, spoke alongside Kabila in 1998. There were fears in Zimbabwe that investments, concessions and obtained a loan to Kabila at the time of the rebellion are not lost. It was about $ 50 million to 200 million dollars, an amount considerably in terms of small African economies.
We observe the same trend of institutional Rwandan side. It is striking that the External Security Organization (ESO), foreign intelligence service in Rwanda, has an office in the Congo has a division "Production".
Angola is hardly affected by such operations. The largest known operation, refining and distribution of oil, is relatively modest and seem legitimate.
In Uganda, the operations are not institutionalized, which naturally does not make the situation less serious.

Jurgen Ceder (Vl BLOK). - What political role the United States play in this conflict? You talked about MPRI, DIA, and even the CIA. Can we say that the U.S. unconditionally chose the camp of Rwanda, Uganda and their allies, or is it excessive?

Mr. F. Reyntjens. - I think this is not the case but he was very well during the first phase of the war. In 1996 and 1997, Americans have clearly played the card of their allies. When it comes to Central Africa, the Americans do not worry too much depth knowledge of issues. They launch a process sometimes they do not control any more and then they are local people and ourselves that we find ourselves in big trouble. Let us not forget that they also supported Kabila.
Very reliable evidence that many Americans have been intimately involved in all areas, political, diplomatic and military. This involvement may take the form of manipulation. The Americans have thus deliberately downplayed the number of fatalities during the exodus of Rwandan refugees from November 1996.
They have even provided the Rwandan Patriotic Army information on the concentration of refugees, which were then systematically exterminated. Evidence of their involvement are numerous.
When Kabila took power and when it became clear in 1997 that a new conflict would oppose it to the sponsors of the rebels in the east, Americans are increasingly distanced from Kabila.
The Americans are very actively involved, including the diplomatic front, in the first phase of the war. The American envoys tried to arrange a soft landing in Kinshasa, which was finally reached in the wake of the collapse of the Mobutu regime and not the U.S. action.
However, we note today that the Americans are virtually absent from the second war. Colette Braeckman suggests that the U.S. Navy would have supervised the operation to Kitona but I never could find any evidence.
For the rest, we see that Americans are poorly made. Their theory is no longer the road. Several African leaders they supported the war are or are about to do. Alliances are changing. Rwanda and Uganda are already in a logic of war, they seek to destabilize each other, creating the need for their own rebel movements.

Ms. Sabine de Bethune (CD & V). - How do you rate the diplomacy of the European Union and its Member States?

Mr. F. Reyntjens. - In central Africa, the Union has the same reputation as in other contexts, it is considered an economic giant but a political dwarf. There is no common EU policy towards Central Africa. The Union is only sending a special envoy, Aldo Ajello. This analysis perfectly the situation in the region but it is totally helpless.
This has consequences. The European Union and some Member States send the wrong signals to the warlords. It's the same for the IMF. The United Kingdom, for example, has become an important donor in Rwanda while in 1994 during the genocide, it does not even have an embassy in this country.
As an individual donor countries, Belgium's policy is relatively balanced. We do not give the impression to the Rwandan regime of issuing blank checks. Kigali is well aware and bilateral relations between Belgium and Rwanda, if correct, are not cordial. Rwandans consider that that is not for them, is against them. The slightest criticism of the Rwandan policy is sanctioned, at least verbally.

Mr. Michiel Maertens (AGALEV). - You just said that the financial assistance of the United Kingdom in Rwanda has risen sharply and that the aid the U.S. has also been enhanced, including for Uganda since the second phase of the war. What does it cover?

Mr. F. Reyntjens. - Increased U.S. aid is relatively small, whatever the Americans say. The British are much more and the EU even more. The Americans offer these plans cover diplomatic and political, but are more hesitant about the financial plan. Contrary to what the French think, it is absent in Central Africa in a fight between a block and a block speaking English.
Since 1967, Uganda, the pearl of Africa, was plunged into a really catastrophic in terms of economy, infrastructure and political stability. Museveni came to power in 1986, has put the country back on track. Primarily for this reason that the British and many others have argued.
It represented a marked improvement over its predecessors. Today it is increasingly considered an incompetent dictator.
The reasoning was quickly made: Kagame is the spiritual son of the covenant between Museveni and Uganda's Museveni and the Rwandan Patriotic Front during the civil war and after the conquest of power in Rwanda has been very strong until 1999. One reason for the break between the two countries is also the dispute over the exploitation of Congo.
Regarding Rwanda, the British have a sense of guilt over the genocide, typically Protestant sentiment they share with the Americans and the Dutch. They should have intervened but did not. Protestants who can not be forgiven by confessing, must redeem their fault, including offering money.
For Americans, the main reason lies in the Sudan which lies on the south border of the breakthrough of Islamic fundamentalism. It is in this context that supported the belligerents in the civil war in southern Sudan. The main rebel movement, the SPLA, is clearly supported by the Americans and to a lesser extent, by the British. Uganda is again a central position in this regard. Without the support of Uganda, the rebel movement would not last long. This applies to Uganda spontaneous sympathy which reflects on Rwanda.
Burundi is far less supported, while there are also Tutsis. The image that we do in this regard is without nuance. The Tutsi are not any more than the Hutu. The ideas we have of Tutsi-Hima empire are insane. Monarchies dominated by Tutsis have consistently fought Tutsi and solidarity does not exist.
Burundian regime is not beholden to Kampala and is therefore treated differently by the international community and especially by the British and Americans.

Mr. Chairman. - Professor Reyntjens, thank you for that introduction.

Judy Wickens. - I am the secretary general of the International Study Centre of tantalum and niobium. This center is an international association established on the basis of the Belgian law of 1919, as many international associations based in Brussels. We have about 70 members in over 20 countries worldwide, which are companies that operate mines. Some also mine raw materials directly from the earth. Tantalum remains in the slag after the removal of tin. There are also pyrochlore mines which extracted niobium. Some of our members buy minerals in small quantities among mining companies. Further, refiners, extract the metal ore or produce capacitors with the material produced by refiners. We also expect both companies to highly specialized analysis.
Tantalum and niobium are both qualified refractory metal elements because it is very difficult to extract from their ores. Their melting temperature is very high. It is therefore not possible to heat the ore and extract the metal in liquid form. We must therefore resort to chemicals.
If, as members of this commission, you are particularly interested in the raw materials produced by the mines, I will also give you a glimpse of the industry as a whole.
The tantalite has a density 13.5 times higher than that of water. It is very heavy. To produce a few cubic centimeters of tantalite, several cubic meters of rock are needed. The tantalum is concentrated by physical means. Then, through chemical means, can produce tantalum oxide and niobium oxide.
It then looks like flour. If one takes away the oxygen, you can get a metal in very fine powder. With it, you can make capacitors, tiny components of electronic circuits. They are used in the manufacture of mobile phones, PCs, auto parts, televisions, radios and many more. This is not the only way to make capacitors. These can be constructed from aluminum, ceramic, and soon niobium.
Coltan is a mineral. This name is used in Africa to designate the columbite tantalite. Personally, I had heard that name once before mid-2000. It is a mineral that is a very small source of tantalum, the main source being the tantalite found in large quantities in Australia, Brazil, China and Africa, not only in the Democratic Republic of Congo and Rwanda but also in Ethiopia, Nigeria, Zimbabwe, South Africa, Namibia, Mozambique, Egypt, Uganda, Burundi and other countries. As for tin slags, which are found mainly in Thailand and Malaysia. In 2001, the niobium is celebrating its 200th anniversary and in 2002 we will celebrate the bicentennial of the discovery of tantalum. The companies that extract the metal ore found in the United States, Germany, Japan, China and Thailand. So always take into account transport issues.
Over 50% of tantalum is used in the manufacture of capacitors. It is also used in the aircraft engines and construction equipment for the chemical and pharmaceutical industry. Indeed, tantalum is not easily attacked by acids. That's about the same thing for niobium.
Tantalum is also used in medicine as a means of suture and strengthening bones broken. It is also used in the formation of a species of moss can be used to reconstruct a body part damaged by accident or cancer. Tantalum is not in fact rejected by the human body, it stays stable for very long.
Ninety percent of niobium used in the composition of a steel very special - it contains less than one percent of niobium - which gives it almost magical properties in terms of resistance, eg against the cold. You can use a lot less thick steel that has very good performance nonetheless.
The remaining ten percent niobium come in various applications, such as the manufacture of superconductors used in MRI, Magnetic Resonance Imaging to examine the non bony body. Niobium is also used in very small amounts in other areas. A very thin layer can be placed on the glass to increase insulation, while letting in light.
Our association collects statistics. We write articles to publicize the two metals. We organize meetings with detailed technical presentations. It is a forum for all users of these two metals.
The TIC has no business and we do not sell anything, we buy nothing. It is an association for the delegates of member companies.

Mr. Chairman. - We would like more specific information on world production and the importance of the Great Lakes. Could you also give an explanation on the evolution of prices, because there are many misunderstandings about this? This would allow us to understand the importance of the Great Lakes region regarding coltan. Why have prices changed so much in recent months?

Judy Wickens. - World production by our members, about 1,500 tons in 2000, has recently increased. Refiners said they had received 2,600 tons of raw material in 2000. For the Great Lakes region, our statistics are only established at the global level, for reasons of confidentiality with respect to our members. If there is one company in one country, give a figure for the country would give a figure for the company, which is not allowed. Our executive committee has estimated the production of Central Africa two years ago to 15% of world production and that of Australia in third or even more. Other producing countries include Brazil, Canada, China, African countries currently produce very little.
In early 2001, we asked our members to ensure their sources in central Africa, although the extraction and sale of ore from this area goes back 30 or 40 years, including time of Belgian colonies.
Regarding prices, like any association, we do not know the exact prices, there is no official price. These metals are not sold in markets like the London Metal Exchange. There is no published price is also the case for many metals with low production.
I learned that the prices were very high in late 2000 and have declined sharply in 2001. There was talk of a real shortage of raw materials, particularly for tantalum. At least two pyrochlore mines of Brazil produce enough niobium to the world for at least 300 more years. There is therefore no question of shortage of niobium.
For tantalum, a problem arose but it was not really a shortage. The manufacturing process is fairly long and difficult parts of the chain does not follow. The plants were then trailing faced difficulties and have amplified the problem. They have placed several orders for components at the end of the chain. Suppliers of materials used in the manufacture of capacitors have not.

Mr. Chairman. - So, because of rumors of a shortage, people have ordered much more than the amount they needed, leading to overproduction and falling prices. Is that correct?

Judy Wickens. - When there was an apparent lack, prices were rising. More recently, we realized there was a lot of raw materials - one might even say that currently there are too many raw materials available - and, consequently, prices have declined.

Mr. Dubie Josy (Ecolo). - Thank you for this statement to me seems quite general. To move forward in our work, we should have more data encrypted.
Where can we find accurate figures on the quantity of such material produced in different countries that interest us, that is to say, those of the Great Lakes?
Also, you say there is no stock exchange or service where the price of such materials is discussed, and yet they have one. Who can we contact to find out what prices and thus have a reference? Optionally, we answer this question in camera.

Judy Wickens. - We do not have the figures for different countries. We ask our members to provide figures for production, also for quantities refined, and we have estimates of the number of capacitors. Given the very limited number of companies involved in production, we do not have figures for each country. These global figures and only limited to our members. These figures are kept confidential by an association of accountants.
The total is communicated to our members and later released.
Anyway, our members do not have a seat in the countries of the Great Lakes.
Our statistics show just a portion of our members may have purchased these countries or elsewhere. They could also buy in small mines in Canada, Thailand and China. There are producers in Australia and South America.
Regarding prices, the metals are sold between companies and only through negotiations and these negotiations are commercial. They are not known to the ICT.
In general, tantalum is sold under long term contracts and not in small quantities. It exists, but in general it is sold by month or quarter by quarter and as a result of contracts negotiated in advance. The prices are not known.

Mr. Michiel Maertens (AGALEV). - I do not ask for confidential figures on the various companies but I wonder on some routes between companies. These data could be communicated in camera, as Mr. Dubie suggested.
The ICT is an important organization. It has 66 members and publishes an interesting review. In June, she already has responded to the first UN report. In its press release, it deplores the activities of illegal businesses. It clearly calls for its members, first "to inform all 66 member companies icts Around the World of the illegal activities from The Surrounding and Their Consequences." I infer that the organization is aware of illegal activities and their consequences. She also wants to "encourage staff to Obtain Their tantalum processors and niobum Raw Materials from lawful sources ... . The organization will know they are illegal sources. Cluff Mining is she a member of ICT? We know that this firm has made a joint venture with Benro Research Corporation in Toronto. What path do we follow? Which book to whom? Belgian firms are involved?
According to reports, in July 1996, prior to the first phase of the war, a production of tantalum has been installed in the Kigali region. What is the capacity? This ability to Rwanda correspond to the sources available to the country? Ms Wickens has she figures? She knows the circuits and capabilities are they?

Judy Wickens. - When the TIC wrote the press release and appeal to our members in early April, we knew nothing of the first UN report and that were linked.
However, we received information from several organizations concerned with nature conservation. We immediately said that the ICT regretted the invasion of nature reserves in search of coltan.
Representatives from UNESCO and "World Heritage" have told me that there were many sources of coltan in the national park and that they were well known since they operated 20 years earlier.
We asked our members not to buy raw materials sources illegitimate or illegal.
Cluff Mining is actually one of our members. I do not know the nature of their trade ties.
I've never heard of Benro company in Toronto.
You spoke of a concentration unit in Rwanda in 1996. I'm sorry but we do not know anything about it.
Regarding the capacity of Rwanda, we do not have data for this country. What is certain is that there are minerals in the soil of Rwanda. All is not exported because the mining company was in Rwanda at the time, a member of ICT. Somirwa GeoMin was part of it is long closed.

Paul Wille (VLD). - I asked about the trade structure. There are many examples of appropriate and structured commodity trades but also trades commodity desired and unstructured.
The volumes are not important. Trade is it through an intermediary? If so, why? If not, why not? In the commodity trade, the agent either disappears if it is not necessary. Is it necessary to work with an intermediary?
The trade of this product is it the result of vertical integration between those who exploit and those who use the product?
One can also wonder whether it would be interesting in the context of the community of interest involving the purchase and export of commodities.
How trade is it a financial point of view? Do we pay cash or use does one of irrevocable letters of credit? Their job is impossible without a description of the goods. Since it has a description of the goods, we know largely what it is.
My last question is about numbers and prices. How can you say that prices have collapsed if the quantities traded are not known?

Mr. Jan Remans (VLD). - The testimony of Ms. Wickens is it based on information from the center of study or personal experience?

Judy Wickens. - Commodity trade? No, it's not a "commodity": tantalum is the raw material for industry.
Y Does the middlemen? I do not know exactly what is happening in central Africa but there would be some sort of traffic in small quantities, output by the frontline staff, very traditional. These quantities are then collected gradually and can go from one hand to another without the knowledge of ICT.
There is little vertical integration. Indeed, the only underground mine in Canada was purchased by a refiner in the United States. I suppose that, in general, it is not commercial, the association was not officially aware of such relationships, even at the level of individual members.
Financial transactions not covered by the ICT skills who is interested in how trade is organized.
As for prices, I can not speak. I try even to the extent possible, not to hear the estimates would be made.
The press has to know the price, initially very high, had declined sharply. I do not know the exact level of prices. I am here as secretary general of the Association. I do not work for the ICT industry but for participating in its management. If you have questions or highly technical business, you should talk to the operating companies themselves.

Mr. Sabine de Bethune (CD & V). - Mrs Wickens can not provide answers to many specific questions.
What is the competence of ICT? The TIC is it the only professional association? What skills of Madame? Y is there an annual report? Can we provide a list of members? When the headquarters is established? What is the annual budget? How many people work for this study center? What services does it provide ICT to its members? Who sits on the Board? How its members are elected?
Madam seems to know the functioning of UN panel by the media and NGOs. This panel he made contact with the ICT in its two reports? The reports have been sent to members of the organization? Conclusions have been drawn and they eventually did they intend to do something?
The exploitation of coltan and treatment they require lots of capital? Members of the ICT they invest in the production process? The Rwandan public company may not have the means to finance operations.
I would like answers to these questions.

Mr. Dubie Josy (Ecolo). - Mrs Wickens said not to be able to give us figures of production and prices and she invited us to send us to the companies.It would be helpful if we had a list of companies that are part of his association, so we can contact them.

Mr. Chairman. - Experts will come that will tell us about the numbers, tours and everything Ms. Wickens will not or can not talk to us.

Mr. Michiel Maertens (AGALEV). - I have the periodic ICT as of December 2000. There are a lot of statistics. I gather that the ICT has good numbers and can provide an overview of world production. Madame is therefore able to provide us with information.
There is even a book devoted to the symposium held in San Francisco in 2000. There are publications, we just do not know the details.

Judy Wickens. - An article with the statistics for 2000 will be published again in 2001. Mr. Maertens has contacted our website.
The TIC is an international association whose goal is to make known tantalum and niobium. The association called "study center" for historical reasons. I am delighted to send you a list of our members. It is also available on our website.
As for our budget, I do not see how it affects you but I can tell you that, as regards the number of people employed by the association, in addition to myself, the association employs a consultant to the U.S. . I said that I work part time.
Regarding the service for members, we collect statistics that they are intended. Then we write articles like the one in San Francisco last year, and Rio de Janeiro this year.
The association is managed by an executive committee composed of ten members, of which I can give you names. These are people active in all industry sectors: mining, refineries, capacitors ... etc..
The first UN report is unfortunately out April 17, after the meeting of our Executive Committee on 3 April. We had to send a press release to our members, our website statement posted on internetmais that do not state this report.
The ICT has not been approached by the panel, either the first or the second report, as you can see in the appendices. By consulting the schedules of the second report, you'll find that there is no society that treats the tantalum.
Coltan is extracted from rocks in Africa, first by physical methods only, like the miners. In Australia, large sections of hard rocks are crushed to retain only tiny black particles, then treated with water or magnetic treatments.
For this first step, or strength, we stick to the physical process. If a large volume of rock contains 0.1% tantalum, is already rich. It takes a lot of physical effort to remove the contents of a bag of medium size.

Paul Wille (VLD). - This process lasts there for days or months? This has an impact on the question of who finances the production process?

Judy Wickens. - Who pays?

Paul Wille (VLD). - Is it funded by the buyers or sellers?

Judy Wickens. - I assume that buyers pay the extractors.

Mr. Dubie Josy (Ecolo). - It is indeed a manual work. Are there nevertheless machines?

Judy Wickens. - There are machines, but this can be done at very small scale, by hand. I already mentioned the work of miners to collect gold. You can do the same thing with tantalum. Because of its density, it sinks to the bottom instead of floating.

Mr. Dubie Josy (Ecolo). - Do you have a movie on it?

Judy Wickens. - No, unfortunately, but I could ask. I just got an American film on the niobium film that nobody saw.

Erika Thijs (CD & V). - Mrs described his specific mission in the ICT. Can not connect numbers or otherwise provides does not?
Tantalum and niobium are, she says, not only ways to make capacitors. Or have I misunderstood?

Mr. Dubie Josy (Ecolo). - I suppose that this metal is transported by air, but I would like to know in what form.

Judy Wickens. - Regarding the financing of ICT, as in any association, members pay an annual fee. She is currently 1735.25 euros from July 1 to June 30 next and covers administrative costs, my salary and the cost of publishing the report. Sometimes it is possible to increase the income of the association from the revenue collected through meetings.
As for production figures, I can provide those for the last five years and the first half of 2001. We collect statistics every six months instead of quarterly, as before, for technical reasons because he needed a quarter to get the numbers.
So, the latest figures available for the ICT hold for the first half of 2001, the figures for the period July to December to be collected in late December.
Regarding the capacitors, several materials can be used in their manufacture. Tantalum offers certain advantages. The capacitor has the ability to stay responsible power for a while and be able to provide it when the circuit is needed. This avoids any disturbance when connecting the circuit and to better balance the current flow. Tantalum is particularly suitable because it is resistant to a high number of charge cycles and discharge. It is able to absorb and supply power reliably and for a very long time. Since it is very dense, the size of the capacitors may be particularly reduced. These capacitors are highly resistant to heat and cold, I think, for example, if a car left outside in winter, and warms up significantly, once the engine running. In addition, the very small size of these capacitors is proving invaluable in the case, for example, GSM.
Other materials may be used. Capacitors made from aluminum are now smaller and more reliable than before. There are also systems based on the use of ceramics comprising several different components.
As for transport, large rocks are difficult to transport, they are crushed to produce a concentrate, packaged in small bags or barrels. The product is transported from Brazil, Australia or Africa to Germany, Japan or the United States. Is extracted, then, metal powder, which are transported by road or air - in a less voluminous yet, in small bags or boxes - to the factories in need.

Erika Thijs (CD & V). - Mrs Wickens Can we provide the figures for the last five years? They give a reflection of the changing use and commodity prices.

Mr. Chairman. - We will join the data provided by Mrs Wickens in the record which will be available next Thursday.

Paul Wille (VLD). - I asked what was the duration of the production process and who was financing. I did not get an answer to this question.
If part of the production process that takes place in Africa is long and requires much labor, the question of funding is not the same meaning as if the production process is short and the value-added made in Germany or Canada.

Mr. Chairman. - The raw material is found in various forms. It is not the same everywhere.

Paul Wille (VLD). - In Africa, either?

Judy Wickens. - I assume that buyers pay the extractors.

Mr. Dubie Josy (Ecolo). - It is indeed a manual work. Are there nevertheless machines?

Judy Wickens. - There are machines, but this can be done at very small scale, by hand. I already mentioned the work of miners to collect gold. You can do the same thing with tantalum. Because of its density, it sinks to the bottom instead of floating.

Mr. Dubie Josy (Ecolo). - Do you have a movie on it?

Judy Wickens. - No, unfortunately, but I could ask. I just got an American film on the niobium film that nobody saw.

Erika Thijs (CD & V). - Mrs described his specific mission in the ICT. Can not connect numbers or otherwise provides does not?
Tantalum and niobium are, she says, not only ways to make capacitors. Or have I misunderstood?

Mr. Dubie Josy (Ecolo). - I suppose that this metal is transported by air, but I would like to know in what form.

Judy Wickens. - Regarding the financing of ICT, as in any association, members pay an annual fee. She is currently 1735.25 euros from July 1 to June 30 next and covers administrative costs, my salary and the cost of publishing the report. Sometimes it is possible to increase the income of the association from the revenue collected through meetings.
As for production figures, I can provide those for the last five years and the first half of 2001. We collect statistics every six months instead of quarterly, as before, for technical reasons because he needed a quarter to get the numbers.
So, the latest figures available for the ICT hold for the first half of 2001, the figures for the period July to December to be collected in late December.
Regarding the capacitors, several materials can be used in their manufacture. Tantalum offers certain advantages. The capacitor has the ability to stay responsible power for a while and be able to provide it when the circuit is needed. This avoids any disturbance when connecting the circuit and to better balance the current flow. Tantalum is particularly suitable because it is resistant to a high number of charge cycles and discharge. It is able to absorb and supply power reliably and for a very long time. Since it is very dense, the size of the capacitors may be particularly reduced. These capacitors are highly resistant to heat and cold, I think, for example, if a car left outside in winter, and warms up significantly, once the engine running. In addition, the very small size of these capacitors is proving invaluable in the case, for example, GSM.
Other materials may be used. Capacitors made from aluminum are now smaller and more reliable than before. There are also systems based on the use of ceramics comprising several different components.
As for transport, large rocks are difficult to transport, they are crushed to produce a concentrate, packaged in small bags or barrels. The product is transported from Brazil, Australia or Africa to Germany, Japan or the United States. Is extracted, then, metal powder, which are transported by road or air - in a less voluminous yet, in small bags or boxes - to the factories in need.

Erika Thijs (CD & V). - Mrs Wickens Can we provide the figures for the last five years? They give a reflection of the changing use and commodity prices.

Mr. Chairman. - We will join the data provided by Mrs Wickens in the record which will be available next Thursday.

Paul Wille (VLD). - I asked what was the duration of the production process and who was financing. I did not get an answer to this question.
If part of the production process that takes place in Africa is long and requires much labor, the question of funding is not the same meaning as if the production process is short and the value-added made in Germany or Canada.

Mr. Chairman. - The raw material is found in various forms. It is not the same everywhere.

Paul Wille (VLD). - In Africa, either?

Judy Wickens. - Regarding the duration, I can not answer.
All tantalum mines are open pit, with the exception of one. The chemicals are very strong. When it rains, the ground turns into mud, revealing the tantalum oxide form tantalum or niobium oxide.
I do not know the duration that requires the extraction: a few days or weeks ... ? I heard that workers performing this work gathered ore gradually. When they have a sufficient quantity of ore, or those buying offices likely to buy are contacted.

Paul Wille (VLD). - The trading houses are run by middlemen or intermediaries.

Mr. Chairman. - These counters are very numerous in Kivu and Rwanda.

Judy Wickens. - The material has a value in itself for the extractors and value added is recorded at each level of the chain.

Mr. Jan Remans (VLD). - Mrs Wickens cited some countries that import the commodity. Is this also the case in Belgium?

Judy Wickens. - We have a few members Belgian who buy the ore, the raw materials. The companies that extract the metal ore are in Germany, Japan, Thailand, China and the United States. This operation is not performed in Belgium. It was in the past but not anymore. However, three members of ICT have their headquarters in Belgium and buy commodities. These companies are certainly known to your committee.

Mr. Michiel Maertens (AGALEV). - Three organizations that are members of the Belgian ICT imported it as raw material at the time.
Are these companies direct purchasers or middlemen?

Mr. Chairman. - I think it is better to ask these questions to the companies concerned. Ms Wickens is a group of companies. We can not compromise by asking specific questions. Companies will give us a more concrete response. The purpose of this meeting is information.
When we hear from businesses, we will intervene as a commission of inquiry and reporting will be under oath. Ms Wickens has no commercial function and has no direct relationship with companies. It merely represents a professional association.
I thank Ms. Wickens for his cooperation.
GR 2 - Friday, November 30, 2001
Hearing of Mr. H. Leclercq and Mrs. P. Bouvier, Professor Emeritus (ULB)

(President: Mr. Andrew Geens)

Mr. H. Leclercq. - I am very honored to receive this distinguished gathering.
I split my presentation into three parts. In the first, let me remind you of some very large quantities of the Democratic Republic of Congo, some elements of its geography and its history I would like to see réintériorisés before understanding what is happening today. Indeed, the historical and geographical determine the current situation in the Democratic Republic of Congo and its neighbors, and I am sure they also determine the future.
In a second part, I demonstrate that the Congo - and before, Zaire - has never lived in the disaster. I will present what the Zairian economy, on the eve of the great catastrophe, between 1973 and 1974.
I will focus more extensively on the emergence of exceptional strength, completely ignored, namely the informal economy Congolese popular is the dominant economic force in the country. On this occasion, I will discuss one of the most remarkable phenomena of the informal economy: the artisanal mining of diamonds, which we will also discuss gold, coltan and see how it is possible to foreign exploration and production to resume the added value of this informal economy that operates in an extremely hard diamond, gold, coltan, cobalt and malachite.
I will introduce the president's office a document written by an expert group Congolese in Belgium which I belong and which aimed to inform participants of the Congolese dialogue. This document includes a political party - the new political order - and an economic part on economic issues of the Congolese conflict which I was the rapporteur.
Moreover, it is impossible to understand the current situation without a schematic map of the Democratic Republic of Congo. I will also file on the desk of the President of maps showing all the issues and problems facing the Democratic Republic of Congo.
The current reality of the Congo has no relation to what is happening elsewhere in the world and especially in Africa. This is precisely both its geography and its history.
Tackle its geography: the data are arch-known but have not been internalized in recent years. First, the Democratic Republic of Congo is based on the Congo River, a river extraordinary, mysterious, which exists nowhere else. It rises in the south, up north and then bends and goes westward to the Atlantic, all over a distance of 4,370 km, which gives this unit all watershed only natural that also features all of his potential. The natural unit was legally consecrated by King Leopold II in 1885.
What I regard as a mystery is that after negotiations extremely long, and through its network of family, Leopold II is admitted in February 1885 the natural unity of the Congo basin and managed to achieve recognition by the international community, by Western countries who wanted to divide Africa, the sovereign rights of the Association Internationale du Congo, on virtually the same boundaries as those of the Democratic Republic of Congo today. Better than that: the emblem respected by the entire international community is, curiously, the blue star flag.
The natural unity that is seen throughout the watershed of which two thirds come back to the Congo and that truly all natural heritage of the Congo, has always been maintained since 1885. It was preserved at first by the Belgian State, through inheritance, as the legatee of the Congo Free State. Then, after the country attained independence, despite the vicissitudes of the early years, this natural unit on a legal basis has always been intended and defended by all leaders, including those who were former secessionists in the early independence.
Finally, after 1998, when the civil war, this unit has always been defended by various leaders of the armed opposition. Of course, this unit has always been popular with public opinion and popular defended by a large majority of the elites.
However, this river holds wealth, I want to remind the world of today. First, the Congo River, extremely rich in potential, first bathe the largest tropical forest of Africa, which will probably be the last primary forest remain on the planet. About 40% of its territory is still covered by this forest.
Secondly, I mention the water. The river water is the second largest source of freshwater on the planet and is the primary source of freshwater in Africa. This will play a very import in the problem of sustainable development in the coming years. Finally, it is a renewable energy source - I am referring to the energy of the Inga-which still has a configuration quite exceptional in that it allows operation without any substantial or excessive investment or harming the environment, which is obviously a condition of the medium-term exploitation of hydropower.
In addition, there is the availability of agricultural land. Today, 900,000 square miles of land suitable for farming and barely a little over 10% are used. Finally, we must remember - everyone knows - that famous geological scandal that has been mapped by the colonial administration but also by the Zairian government until mid-1974, and again shows the extraordinary richness mineral that can be exploited commercially, and this in all areas.
This famous natural potential - water, forests, renewable energy, mining has been a scandal and an oil that was recently discovered in the vicinity of Lake Edward and Lake Albert, which contain reserves at least equal to that of Nigeria - is extremely important. It is so big today, despite all the operations that have taken place, it is virtually unspoilt.
It was barely nibbled by the painful events and the civil war which actually began from late 1996 and is ongoing.
The economy has experienced extraordinary moments. It was not always the disaster. Between 1967 and 1974, the Zairian economy was one of the most prosperous sub-Saharan Africa. Between 1967 and 1974, growth was 7.6% per annum and manufacturing grew by 8.6%. This event is quite extraordinary.
In the press as Belgian and French and Anglo-Saxon was spoken of as the Republic of Zaire, after Nigeria and South Africa, the third regional power in Africa.
We must remember what the Republic of Zaire in 1974. It was a centralized state, whose economy was based on a set of public enterprises. The economic heart of the device was Gecamines, the heiress of the Union Miniere du Haut Katanga. She has developed extremely important investments made in 1974, the Union mine, now Gecamines, the sixth global mining company. She had investments that were undertaken as a technological masterpiece and had pushed the highly efficient production capacity to a maximum that will never be achieved after 1974.
On this public enterprise were grafted two huge public transport enterprises, namely Onatra, former Otraco of the colony, and CNCZ ex-KDL, the great railroad of the colonial era.
These two points of support were the famous national route that allowed the export of copper out to the Atlantic, but was also a focus of economic development all along this path.
Another large public company, which entered the zeitgeist at the time, was grafted on this company, namely the National Electricity Company, which had begun a program for operating the energy of Inga, a 350-megawatt plant and a second plant with a high voltage line Inga-Katanga to come into operation in 1982.
A multitude of public companies gravitated to this company, along with a private manufacturing industry supported by the state. The major victim of this development was agriculture, particularly industrialized agriculture for export.
Thus arose the Congolese economy in 1974. I quote a figure for you to realize the magnitude of the situation: the gross domestic product stood at the time, in 2000 dollars, 10 billion. This represented approximately $ 500 per capita as there were 21 million. It was a summit.
Everything changes because in the Congo, nothing is linear. Everything happens so chaotic. You can never predict what will happen.
Within months, the situation has deteriorated catastrophically. Several factors have intervened. They were added to each other and caused that some Congolese have called the Disaster naked. " First, the price of copper has fallen dramatically by 50% while fuel prices rose sharply. In addition, the civil war in Angola has disrupted relations between the Katanga and Lobito Dilolo who was the Atlantic port to export the cheaper products leading producer of Congo's resources at this time.
Meanwhile, in a kind of excessiveness, President Mobutu and his entourage took the famous zaïrisation measure. This was to redistribute political and business elite who had just been created by the president, a large part of the assets owned by foreigners. All this has led to enormous confusion because the orders and counterorders have succeeded. After zaïrisation was again placed under government control everything that had previously been transferred to private Congolese. Then we made a 180 degree turn to make these assets to their former owners. It is during this great upheaval, this jerk considerable international measures of these improvised and contradictory economic policies, what reached the second important factor that would give the coup de grace to the Congolese economy: both Shaba wars. The second, shorter, has 950 civilian deaths including 92 Western and led the exile of 2360 West. They left the Katanga region, including the Kolwezi who had been seriously attacked by invaders from Angola. At that time, 400 technicians Union mining, Gecamines, left, leaving a vacuum, despite their replacement by a highly qualified Congolese staff. The technical and administrative foundations of Gecamines had collapsed. That's when the West intervened. They continued to give aid to Zaire, with the reform of political institutions, transparency in the management of public funds, reconciliation with neighbors and amnesty for political prisoners. This was the basis for an attempt to reform but it has completely failed.
Between 1976 and 1990, the eve of the transition period, the country witnessed a descent into hell as he has never existed anywhere else. Negative growth between 1975 and 1978 was approximately 6% per year. Gradually, an extraordinary inflation has eroded the income of any administrative elite who held formal institutions inherited from the colony. By 1990, administrative institutions, schools and health, were dislocated. They were the greatest victims of this brutal contraction accompanied by inflation.
It was then that we saw in response, to establish an alternative political management, not through a government and formal institutions such until 1972 - 1973, but through elite political and commercial sectors with dominant only working through networks. Therefore, the power belonged to a chain of institutions supported by elites: central bank, Gecamines, security institutions. Thus, the Congolese economy has functioned between 1980 and 1990. But all this has been accompanied by destruction. A typical example is the reform of Gecamines, all attempts at reform have been perverted, they were never successful. Very large investments have been made to Gecamines but it was eaten from the inside, even if at first glance, one could see. The tools were old, overpriced goods supply, reservoir skimmed, the organization had failed, much of the diverted revenue. All this has been found by international institutions. It was as if a kind of termite eating away inside of this incredible infrastructure that was Gecamines.
On 20 September 1990, the jewel of the center of the Congolese economy, the Kamoto mine collapsed, causing the collapse of any Gecamines and, domino effect, that of all the Congolese public sector.
All the political also collapsing. All this is still crowned by riots and looting in September 1991. After that, virtually everything is laid flat. All modern structures, institutional and economic factors that had been accumulated since 1885 until about 1974, and for some until 1980, disappeared completely. There are only a few fragments, some institutional settings. The collapse also affects the institutional Army, which is poorly equipped, demoralized and no longer paid, it also causes the implosion of the entire monetary system.
Therefore, the ability of a modern economy to generate revenues from value added is gone. The gross domestic product of the modern sector was ten billion, according to the latest 1990 data, the sector value added amounted to 3.8 billion. We can therefore say that the modern sector represents only a very small part of what still exists in the Congolese economy today.
I turn to my second point. In light of the catastrophic collapse of modern structures, a new economic force initially completely unknown, even by international financial institutions, is gradually emerging: People informal economy. For the latter, it means poor economy. All those working in the informal economy are not all poor people's economy but informal economy is poor. These are specific traits of the Congo. The latter has developed a popular informal economy which is now dominant, that is to say, it accounts for two thirds of gross domestic product, which still stood still, in 1998, eleven billion dollars . Currently, the full support of economic activity is ensured by this population. Millions of very poor activities have grown and formed a huge market where possible - it is characteristic of the popular economy - along with a network of solidarity. There is an interaction between on the one hand, a market economy where everyone has the opportunity to earn a crust, do business and be a micro-entrepreneur and, secondly, maintenance of networks solidarity.
This is extremely important. Without the network of solidarity, it is not possible to develop a market economy. It strengthens solidarity. This highly diversified economy is based on freedom to travel, communicate, access to urban land and farmland.
Solidarity networks are fighting obviously based on family ties. Without starting a family structure, it is difficult to build a network of solidarity in the Congo. In this game of interaction alongside other emerging market bonds through churches, sports, music, all kinds of social activities that do not appear only in economic activities. These links are part of the market network. This informal economy has contacts first locally, then with the border. It has always been in contact with its neighbors, for ethnic relations and market, with Uganda, Rwanda, Tanzania, Central African Republic, Angola and Congo - Brazzaville. Its commercial, economic and social have always developed within this unit that was the Republic of Zaire, and after, the Democratic Republic of Congo. In addition, the economy has also kept in touch with a modern economy, with elites. Today, after my experience, there is no elite who had no contact with the people's economy either through informal business connections, either through bonds or clan kinship.
Finally, because of this mix of business and social relations and solidarity, has formed an ethnic mix that allowed survival: whether Nande is stirring in the business with Baluba Kasai, or Bakongo Bapende with, for example. This "soup" for survival. Meanwhile an extraordinary factor emerged: the diamond in the Congolese context, played a role.
Today, the diamond is the valve for the Republic of Zaire. It has virtually replaced the revenue that was Gecamines: it held 60% of large resources and about 40% of resources from industry very modern and very sophisticated what was the Union Miniere.
The diamond has always been forbidden. We were forbidden to speak of the diamond during the colonial period, virtually until the early 80s. It was held in 1981 liberalization of the diamond.
You should know that diamond is a material quite different from that of gold and much more different from that of coltan and other rare metals.
Contrary to what happens in other neighboring countries as Angola and Sierra Leone - do absolutely no comparison between the two - the diamond is one of the mysteries Congolese. It lies across the Congo.
From south to north - 1500 km on 500 - the lower river has always alluvium or illuvions containing diamond but, and this feature differs from Angola or Sierra Leone, the diamond is of average quality, or sometimes extraordinary, but in any case, it can be exploited industrially. This is the case of most Congolese diamonds scattered throughout the territory. It exploits the kimberlite; there an upper layer of alluvial diamonds and illuvionnaires.
Investigations Colonial and then Zairean government has made with major geological institutions, including the BRGM, had demonstrated the extreme difficulty to initiate an industrial diamond, except in some special places, including the Bujimai, near the industrial plant of MIBA. This was not the case in Sierra Leone. To give you an example, the average value of a diamond found in Congo river is between 35 and 40 dollars a carat against $ 250 a carat in Sierra Leone. This obviously attracts the envy and worth the risk to go into these areas. It's the same in Angola where the value of diamonds is between 180 and 200 dollars a carat.
Congo, the diamond is however an extremely important source.
The operation is popular. Some people wonder how it is possible. I'll give you the features. These are all small operations that require very little equipment, between five and twelve people. The network system is extremely complicated: one must have the consent of the land chief, traders. In addition, diamond is an extremely slight. Must have technical knowledge. The Congolese whose first into the ground were Baluba, had a very quick understanding of the diamond. In addition, it fits into an international market that looks suspiciously like an informal economy. The international diamond market is totally deregulated economy, quite informal, where the unwritten is extremely important. Hundreds of thousands of people began to dig, but in anything, such as a river. Forms of exploitation are extremely diverse. Dredging requires masks, vacuum cleaners, is already a more advanced and more demanding in terms of capital. It may also include small holes, with five or ten people who work, or forestry camps. I also heard stories of extraordinary colonial expeditions, mining expeditions in Angola where a score of Congolese had taken the risk of engaging in the province of Lunda Norte to take the diamond, often after having concluded agreements with the Unita, with people of Savimbi. Finally, every year, at the exit, there were always strangers. In 1900, there were 13 counters. Then, when Laurent-Désiré Kabila, there were 30 foreign outlets consisting of Antwerp, Israelis, Lebanese known, whose names are often cited in UN reports.
I quote: Nassour, Aslanian, Khanafer ... All were already working in the eighties. These trading houses, which are interfaces to compete extraordinary harnessed by the Congolese themselves placed in a competitive system. The market was extremely competitive and with the development of communications, the price of the diamond was known to Mbujimai, Kahemba, Tshikapa, at the same time as Antwerp except, perhaps, for diamonds more difficult to assess. Moreover, all this was based on a legal system that was required, which was accepted. That may be the only legal system that has institutional survived until 1998. This system had imposed the liberalization of the diamond. It prohibits in particular the presence of foreigners within the artisanal mining areas. Foreigners could be in the buying offices. Mining operations have traditionally been left to the Congolese. Purchases after the chain has always been provided by foreigners. The life of Chief Countertop Kisangani, Kahemba at Tembo in Tchikapa at Mbujimai, all along these rivers rich in diamonds, is extremely hard.
Women have always played a considerable role in this. Very often, women are Lokele in with foreign buyers. Besides, without them it is impossible to undertake the marketing of diamonds. Women have always played an important role as sorters, such as contacts, as intelligence officers. The beginning of negotiations is in fact dependent on the presence of women among foreigners. The exploitation and trade of diamonds are so ambiguous things, implementing a multitude of smaller networks. The campaigns take place in the dry season. They can provide a gain of ten thousand dollars to five people. In Angola, the gains are still substantial but the risks are enormous. The importance of this income at the macroeconomic level is considerable. The latest available figures, prior to 1998, reached nearly $ 800 million. The most plausible figure for the period 1991-1992 to 1995, are, on average, between 600 and 700 million. Foreigners collect between 20 and 25% of these amounts. The rest is integrated into the Congolese economy. These are, unfortunately, rarely lead to the creation of sources of development. The tragedy is that this is almost spent on consumption: 4x4, women, drinks. All this leaking and only a small fraction, 1 or 2%, succeeds. The rules are strict and artisanal sanctioned, but the exceptions to the unwritten rules, very complex, are sanctioned immediately by the curse.
But once the product is received, this is where the scam begins with the disappearance of money, etc.. To illustrate the power of the people I cite the case of the famous 762-carat diamond discovered in Kasai. The ruling elite wanted to appropriate it, which caused a popular backlash. The unfortunate fact that this discovery had no chance: the fruit - between 13 and 15 million - has dissipated in a few months, within the community Kasai.
Diamond has another characteristic: it is very difficult "militarization". It exported 25 million carats, representing the one hand, a $ 700 million and, secondly, a weight of 3 tons. To get from 110 to 120 million dollars with gold, it takes between 15 and 20 tons. This poses problems of transport ...
As for coltan, the system is not really accessible to the public because it requires expertise, special tests, special scales, etc.. This is not the same thing, compared to diamond and gold.
In addition, the diamond market is quite "deregulated" internationally, but there is a link between Antwerp diamond and diamond Congo, which is not the case between an exporter of coltan and end of the chain.
Moreover, the largest export quantity ever recorded, which was when the great "boom" in the price of coltan, for 445 tonnes, representing around 45 million. Coltan is very difficult to assess. It is estimated today at $ 15 a kilo, but it increased to $ 50 a kilo.
Coltan is therefore much more easily "militarization". He has to be transported, presented to prospective purchasers, who must have the knowledge and technical capabilities. Coltan comes in addition to old mines. Gold is much less easy to control.
It makes all the difference between the Congolese gold, diamonds and rare metals Congolese Congolese. They go through very different marketing networks compared to diamond.
In the panoply Congolese coltan is little, compared to total exports, representing 1 billion 800 million dollars.
An important element of these natural resources almost entirely to escape the people's economy: wood. Wood is becoming one of the most coveted resources in Congo. I draw your attention to this point, because the situation is evolving very rapidly. In the case of Congo, the disorder is a kind of protector of the great natural heritage. It's even worse for the wood for coltan, because it must take the collection, transportation, infrastructure that requires extremely heavy. Very few succeed. It was nice grant millions of acres in Katanga, in the forests of Masisi, the banks of the central basin, and these areas are very difficult to exploit. But now, foreigners are present on site to try. The exploitation of the forest is obviously an inherent operating an industrial nature.
The exploitation of other minerals like cobalt, requires an industrial operation.
It is a major stumbling block for those who want to exploit. Take the case of Zimbabwe who wanted to make efforts for diamond mining. However, it does not lend itself to industrial exploitation. We must resort to another level of farmers with assets much greater. Zimbabweans have been scammed by the Congolese because he was finally artisanal mining. As was to militarize the area, it could do so only in areas "industrialized", specifically that of Miba, hence the conflict with major international companies and finally with the BDF and the shareholders of Miba. However, if we give the Zimbabwean regime one of the few commercially exploitable deposits, it gives rise to enormous tensions.
Regarding gold, Ugandans have adopted a method already very informal. These are the heads that have changed, but even before 1996 and 1998 there was roughly between 15 and 20 tons, 8 tons passed through Uganda and 10 in Burundi. Traditionally, it was important to gold. Why? Bujumbura had a great airport and a refinery. It was owned by an Antwerp, Mr. Goetz, who was granted a franchise. Thus, gold could be refined, so one could see directly into the exact content. It was then exported to Switzerland or Olen in Belgian companies. Thus, gold was already exported from 1988, 1989 by Burundi. Seven tons of gold were already exported via Kampala, through networks Hema-Nande.
Currently, all these activities were taken over by the rebels who are trying to collect the tithes collected earlier by the central government.
Regarding cotton, the organization is quite different. The cotton helps primarily in Rwanda, because most happening there.
The Rwandans, who are also trying to militarize the gold, managed to deflect what was sent before in Burundi. In 1999-2000, it is about 7 to 10 tons of gold that passed through Kigali least a ton was evacuated by Burundi.
The question of the militarization meets individual interests. Behind these trades, we seem to forget something - I've never seen mentioned in the UN report - namely that the vast wealth is the importation of weapons. The cons-paying value of weapons, but these are the weapons that generate maximum benefit and not the marketing of diamonds and gold. Is transportation and imports, including fuel, creating profit, but the benefit comes from higher import weapons. This is the value-cons that enriches the various elites, but it's not even the diamond trade.
There are two different methods: Uganda uses a system that is very close informal Congolese elites.
All this is very informal: a general understanding with local authorities themselves agree with land managers who negotiate with the Lendu. All very confusing to exploit gold.
In Rwanda, the organization is much more militarized. The army is indeed much more disciplined. Coltan lends itself more easily and Rwanda provides a more objective exploitation of gold, which is in fact a looting of resources because we try to avoid most of the value added to the population which was to ensure that production for its own benefit, through a military network.
Zimbabwe has also established a military complex but of being formal. It intends to undertake, in Western style, the exploitation of Congo's riches. By allying with firms that have set up shop, Zimbabwean companies, through public enterprises, wanted to develop very formal organizations for the industrial exploitation of cobalt and copper.
Angola was not interested in these resources. He wants to protect its course Kabinda oil resources and, most importantly, have control over the diamond region of Lunda Norte border. There, the Angolans have intervened militarily and shipping Congolese find it very hard to venture there. Russians, Brazilians and Australians arrive there with their entire armada to conduct formal industrial exploitation of diamond in this province.
I was a bit chaotic, but the marketing systems are too. They have, however, a watering system, sustain the whole of this popular economy. But everybody is not part of that economy. The poor example, and that's the drama! About 20% of the Congolese people are completely isolated and not participating in this network monetized. In addition, displaced persons, refugees who were uprooted from their social environment are unable to take in hand the network and make popular informal economy. All military networks, militias, youth who are recruited, are as incapable. The Kalashnikov is their only livelihood. And even within cities which are the foci of the popular economy, there are areas so poor that the family systems are destabilized. One of the most important indicators is the number of abandoned children. This is very serious because it leads immediately drifts mafia. However, this network of informal economy, so dense and so thick, prevents excesses mafia. It is very difficult to launder money through diamonds and gold. By cons, in case of breakdown, there is a way for young people. I therefore appeal to demilitarize them.

Mr. Chairman. - Professor, you, as always defended your views with enthusiasm. I think there will be many questions.

Mr. Michiel Maertens (AGALEV). - Professor Leclercq spoke of the oil on Lake Albert and Lake Edward. What is the importance of reserves? Where can we get information about it?
With regard to coltan, the professor refers to a military network. I wonder which companies this network Belgian relations. Where can we get figures on this?
This morning, the ICT has given us many reversals. However we could not get any details about the companies that deal with the counters, the quantities involved in this trade and the channels used. We feel that besides the military network, there could be a cartel of global coltan. It is feared that this has an influence on prices. From an economic standpoint, cartel agreements are difficult to accept.
If, as you say, it's so easy to exercise control, could we create one via European bodies?

Georges Dallemagne (SGP). - The pattern you have presented is both impressive and very informative, but also quite disturbing in terms of evolution. You're done saying sorry for the chaos it can represent. It is true that I have a few that impression. Besides issues of arms trade, the ongoing war and exploitation of the riches that are the heart of our work, where should I start trying to rebuild an economy that will work? We are in a system where everything is so "rotten" - you used that word - unstructured, eaten ... We do not go to school, the old routes by road or railway no longer exist, new villages have migrated along the rivers. So there is an economy that is adapted to a new environment, a new ecosystem and one wonders where to begin trying to rebuild an economy. An expression is frequently used in the political, namely the security of goods and people. Surprisingly, you did mention that fact. Is this really reorganizing a legal system, safeguarding property and people we can start this economy? Is this really the first step or are there other types of mechanisms to rebuild an economy for the good of everyone, to recreate social solidarity? You have put your finger on the problem you think is the most serious today, namely the fact that solidarity is extremely tenuous now. Some sectors of Congolese society are stigmatized as informal economy. You said that any part of the population is not monetized and must live without any resources. Imagine how a reconstruction, redevelopment economically?
More specifically, I was alerted by your cry of alarm about the timber. Tell me a little more. I think this is one of the few resources - you tell me if I'm wrong - that the abuse will result in irreparable consequences for the economic and human development. Again, ecosystems may be severely disrupted. Which regions are affected? What kinds of species? What networks, operators? Is this a type of informal economy rather type or militarized? I guess it is rather in that area. What are the courses? This is certainly one of the most worrying problems but it is also one of those where you can act when it starts to go off. We have perhaps a greater power to intervene.
I would also get a general explanation about the traffic in arms. You said it was ultimately the main resource, the main agent of wealth for some major operators in Congo and that was the importation of products that allowed especially the enrichment. How this happens it actually between importers and exporters? Is there a direct link? This is it at the counters? What is the role of the banking system, if there is another one? What happens to transfer resources from exporters to importers? What is the mechanism at play there? Where applicable, or are these weapons? Who are the main importers? What are channels? What are the places of transit? I remember being told that Belgium was mostly asked about his position in the transit area. Finally, what is today the wealth per capita?

Mr. H. Leclercq. - If you ask names, I want to set the record straight.
The chain of coltan is very easy and I think you just heard an expert in this field. This pathway leads to a network of Kazakhstan. Large companies marketing and trading are known. Coltan is not an information problem. Just go get it. Large Belgian companies are in one way or another involved in this shipment. It is very easy to press and are prepared to do, especially as coltan, is a substance that changes and is much less interesting than it was in 1999 and 2000.
Regarding diamonds, it must be extremely careful. Since 1977, I try to understand. Everything is in Antwerp, but it is losing its place on the market. Must be taken into account. We can name names, but everyone knows them. We can not directly link the names of the medium Antwerp and is a world fusion. One can cite Aslanian, a well known diamond in the square. He bought the diamond, diamond like everyone else who is extremely competitive.
In the international market in Antwerp, there are great rivalries. The main beneficiaries are the market of Tel Aviv and, to some extent, the Hindus who make the diamond less attractive to cut in Bombay.
Concerning the Congo, I do not think there is a robbery. Of course, one must bribe some administrative authorities, but it was always the case. We must reconcile everyone.
The administrative sector, for example, receives a portion of the value of the diamond. It is very difficult to know who gets what. The medium is the easiest to understand is obviously the Antwerp market. Then there is the market in Tel Aviv, which goes more to the pinnacle of stardom and fame. It brings together people who are extremely significant from the point of view of diamonds. I will not mention them because you know them. These include Schnitzer, and others who are both in Angola and Congo.
I say to Mr Dallemagne that is not so much the diamond trade is important because it is a market, but what is downstream, ie transport and all operations are linked.
In remote areas, accompanied by import export. When an inspection takes place, all profit is realized on imports. I do not think only for arms imports, which are the most interesting, most illegal and in which everyone is involved because these networks through negotiations we always end up finding arms producers based in Belgium, France or the U.S., but I think the carriage, which is the most important. Transport firms are much more mysterious.
In the case of Congo, there is always now links with the Russians, Ukrainians and to a lesser extent. We know that it is engaged Antonov transport. On the issue of transport is related to the importation of fuel, spare parts and staples. They are Zimbabweans who trade these different imports.
Fuel is obviously a very important element. This became very mysterious. I started a survey of transport companies as private transport firms are always people who derive the benefits.
I give you an example that goes to Angola. In this country, where the camps occupied by more than 15,000 people suffered serious injuries and were decimated, about 100 km after the border, there was a camp for Congolese where the bottle from Primus is paying between five and ten dollars . Swallows it all proceeds from the sale of diamonds. For the latter, but it's difficult for areas to the east, it is obviously an important element. You need to have the carriers and the arms trade. I see that is much more discreet about these phenomena to import weapons, based of course on exporting raw materials.
For diamonds in Congo, there is an association with the guns. Antwerp do not like to interfere in arms. Relations for diamond in Angola is another matter. But the financing of weapons by the diamond is something difficult. However, it is much easier for gold, and even more for coltan. Again, it is the weight that plays: a transport of ten tons of gold should be secured, the three tons of diamonds can be spread everywhere. These are the structural characteristics.
I would also say that the safety of persons and property is the sine qua non for the resumption of a popular informal economy. It is for this reason that the cease-fire and the establishment of peace is paramount. There is absolutely no need to send aid in the absence of a modicum of peace and security. This is proven in Afghanistan. But some areas are already safe and secure we would obviously river.
I would also say that from the moment you secure, there are also dangerous openings. Should be secured but also for some guarantees of entry and exploitation by foreigners. There is a kind of paradox: it is because of insecurity and the inability to transport there has been no logging that I saw in Côte d'Ivoire. This operation was scandalous in Malaysia, Indonesia and Brazil. It was very difficult to travel in Congo. Take the case of the Thai firm DARA Forest, which has sought to exploit the forests of Masisi, the Mai Mai are directly involved and some engineers were kidnapped: Swedes and Germans. Everything has been stopped, since it required permissions from the Kinshasa government. In these circumstances it is not possible to industrialize the timber. This requires an institutional structure. The industrial exploitation of minerals, timber and agricultural resources is impossible without a legal, institutional, peace and security is both an advantage and a disadvantage. It should also be checked.
The World Bank has committed a lot of mistakes in the past, will not pass it. It is certain that after his Brazilian experience and experience in Indonesia and Malaysia, the World Bank can no longer afford wanton exploitation of the Congolese rainforest.

Mr. Dubie Josy (Ecolo). - When you talk of trade between the exploitation of all these materials, you said that there was still a producer of weapons that was somewhere in Belgium or France?
Do you have accurate information about producers of Belgian weapons which would provide weapons in the Congolese conflict?

Mr. H. Leclercq. - In what I know, it never works with a direct producer. It does not exist.

Mr. Dubie Josy (Ecolo). - That's what I thought, but you spoke of arms producers.

Mr. H. Leclercq. - Quite simply, we know them. Whether in France, England, the United States or Russia, the arms we know where they are. These producers are not numerous.
Today, because of pressure from the international community, the bulk is now obviously in Russia and Ukraine.
But you can not jam the primary producer because he always works with a chain of importers. If this is not the first, is the second largest importer. They are the importers of weapons to discover.

Mr. Dubie Josy (Ecolo). - Hence the importance of marking and tracing weapons.

Mr. H. Leclercq. - For weapons it is possible for diamonds that is impossible.

Ms. Sabine de Bethune (CD & V). - Have you found a break in the economic mechanisms and in the informal economy since coming to power of Kabila's son?
During a recent mission to Kinshasa, we learned previously, looting often benefited the local population but at present, profits disappear overseas. The break she would fall to that level?
Regarding the informal economy, you have quoted figures expressed in absolute numbers and percentages of GNP. How do you calculate? What are your sources?
In your opinion, what direction should go our conclusions? This morning, Professor Reyntjens we made certain recommendations, particularly with regard to development cooperation.

Mr. H. Leclercq. - I thought I heard a question about the value of the informal economy. It is the sole owner of the Congolese currency today: there are only the poor. The real value of cash is explained in the report that I will submit to the President. The entire Congolese francs, in cash, as there is more scriptural money, between ninety and one hundred million dollars is in the hands of the popular economy.
Its utility is to finance a return, namely small circulating capital, that is to say, the supply of goods, activities, transportation ... Every time we gave out tickets, the elite - the modern economy - would turn them into dollars, which resulted in a significant increase in the value of the tickets that were eventually incorporated into the informal economy, I will recall, is a market economy: one that sells at a very high price to buy at another vendor products very high, resulting in an extremely fast successive exchange after which the tickets are losing much of their value.
I'll take a typical case known to all the Congolese, the fare of fifty thousand Zaire, the famous Mikomboso which showed on its face a battery gorilla family frolicking on Mount Virunga. In May 1991, when it was introduced, the ticket was worth twelve dollars, and in December 1991, he was no longer worth a dollar. With that, we bought the diamond: the informal economy was working.
In December 1992, Mikomboso was worth more than two hundred pieces that were given to children to play and then they disappeared. Kinois had a special formula at the time: "The Mikomboso return to the forest."
One of my colleagues, Stéphane Marese, calculations were performed for the period before 1990. For 1989, it was valued at $ 5 billion in the informal economy, using a more sophisticated method than mine: he established what was the purpose money balances. A saleswoman of donuts, for example, is running its cash holdings once every three days. In informal economy - it goes back to basic manufacturers, but there is always a line - it runs extremely fast.
You asked if Laurent-Desire Kabila had done the same thing. At the time, there was more structure. The previous regime had exploited Gecamines. External assistance accounted for some $ 700 million per year between 1980 and 1990, more Gecamines and the informal economy in the hands of the population: there was something to eat. During the regime of Laurent-Desire Kabila, there was cake. Only there was still crop was the diamond.
The previous regime, already sold mining concessions to fashion Congolese successively by transferring them to multiple buyers. There was no legal structure. At first, foreigners have rushed into this system. The concessions were actually assigned to the punch. The second addendum UN reveals that a particular Zimbabwean company has obtained a grant of 33 million hectares. In Dara, we conceded something like 400,000 hectares. The Congolese are aware that this will never be held, but in the meantime, it makes a few small packages at the time of signature. The concession of the mine in Tenke Fungurume generated a revenue official amounting to several hundred million dollars. This process was repeated by the team of Kabila, but over time, this source has dried up.
The concession Tchibue was the last major concession in the diamond Mbujimai. It has also been granted to the Zimbabwean Kostlec mysterious association. The regime of Laurent-Desire Kabila has used Miba as the previous regime did with the Union Miniere. Miba, the only source of income for the regime, has been eroded from within and it is practically in the same state where mining was the Union in 1990.
Today, yes, everything is flat. We must construct a new mode of development of potential resources from extraordinary.
The informal economy also affects non-governmental organizations, where there is, of course, drink and eat. The major NGOs emanating from large churches, where there are drinking and eating on their way to act. Anyway, these large churches offer support. Then come the private companies that remain: the Sugar Company, the textile companies and others all live in harmony with the popular informal economy.
The local economy is the last informal market. The elite itself is reduced to use informal networks. The first thing to do to revive the economy is to support the informal economy popular now supported by international financial institutions. The informal economy is no longer popular considered a "junk economics".
This economy requires skills, specific technical knowledge. It still considers that it is developing small and medium enterprises and aid are all provided for this purpose. Now it's all about developing the popular micro-economics of survival, insecure but very active, which requires its players to learn to communicate, read, know how to write, calculate and know, above all, good health . Capital is indeed eaten speeds when a mother - women play a prominent role in the matter - is forced to run its activities on hold to care for a sick child. Disaster struck today's most egregious health and education.

Erika Thijs (CD & V). - This morning, Professor Reyntjens said that economic growth is often due to the contribution of other countries. In your opinion, during the period 1967-1975, the Zairian economy had peaked. Was it because of this international input or through the force of the country itself? If Congo was strongly supported by the international community, no doubt the economy would recover it. But once he was terminated this support, the country could he not fall again?
Regarding the forest, knowing that wood is becoming a key raw material in the global economy, it will be difficult to prevent the exploitation of the forest, the Congo and elsewhere. How should I approach this problem? Should we not now develop reforestation projects?
Mr. Dubie has raised the issue of arms. This week, during a committee meeting, we said Belgian firms supplying weapons only to governments. It would be interesting to know whether Belgian weapons were found on the ground. Can you provide guidance on this?
You say that the coltan poses no real problem in Congo, and this view seems to be shared by Mrs Wickens. Under these conditions, why the United Nations commission to grant does it matter so much, more than gold and diamonds?

Mr. Dubie Josy (Ecolo). - I would first like to associate myself with the remarks made by my colleagues, including Dr. Thijs. I also, professor, mark my enthusiasm for your presentation, I found not only brilliant but also practical, precise and humane.
Let me ask you a question that comes perhaps a little of the subject at hand. You certainly know the existence of the Grameen Bank, the Bank for the Poor. It is based on a similar system: the rapid circulation of small capital. This system has proved very effective in Bangladesh and other countries. Is he in the Congo? If yes, does it work? I remember because it is based on trust and loan repayments.

Mr. H. Leclercq. - The system of micro-credits would not work. There exists another, quite original: that of trade credit. The person receiving the goods immediately, but delivers directly in cash an amount equal to one third of the total value, indexed to the dollar. For new goods, he must first pay off the ones you received. When the transaction is complete, you can retrieve your deposit.
The system of micro-credits is very difficult to implement because it can only exist if there is trust between the networks. Such experiments have been developed in Senegal and Côte d'Ivoire, but they are not completed. The modern network does not know the informal network, one person always ends up taking domination.

Mr. Dubie Josy (Ecolo). - An idiot of the World Bank, for example!

Mr. H. Leclercq. - Yes, and who takes full advantage of micro-credit or to make themselves look good, distributes itself part of the funds, through operations that are more economic transactions, but transactions of mourning , marriage ... This is quite different from what is happening in India, but there will certainly be opportunities in the future. In particular, a revolving credit extremely powerful, capable of releasing large sums. One can, in this regard, welcome the existence of the thrift shops - a form of credit "roll over" - that work very well. The first to extend credit are the Pakistanis and then leave these amounts on the market and begin to rotate. I'll spare you the details.
The informal economy should certainly not be supported with projects. Education and health are the two starting conditions. Freedom, security and ease of transport. Must be able to move.
I will be much more circumspect with regard to significant support infrastructure. I give you an example: Kinshasa Matadi road again under current conditions is criminal for me. Indeed, this is not the population that would benefit, but the timber carriers. And large trucks on these roads will quickly come to end three or four months later, they no longer exist. The Kuwaitis have invested in the construction of a section located between Kinshasa and Basankusu, then to Kimpese. This road was completely destroyed in a short time, by passing a very large cartage.
However, I would be much more conducive to restarting progressive line railway. With some small adjustments, importers can provide container.
For cons, I'm all for improving the road-Kenge Kikwit because we know it will not be frequented by large carriers.

Mr. Chairman. - It would be a fascinating discussion, but now we treat another topic. In any case, all the things you made were very interesting.

Mr. H. Leclercq. - The importance of coltan has been revealed by the media, including newspapers Liberation and Le Monde. Its price has reached 200 dollars. It is not in the Congo it is found.

Georges Dallemagne (SGP). - I was part of the delegation that visited Congo with Mr. Louis Michel. In the region of Kisangani, we still met a few producers of coltan, head of small family businesses. They talked of the difficulty to produce, violence and circuits coltan, with foreign armies, including Rwanda. There was an economic reality and links with the war and the occupation forces.

Mr. H. Leclercq. - But what is the importance of financial, coltan is relatively low.

Georges Dallemagne (SGP). - Possibly.

Paul Wille (VLD). - Mr. Leclercq stressed the importance of logistics for trade in certain commodities. He also suggested studying the transport sector and the banking. Could he be more explicit regarding the transmission of documents and business transactions?
What is the opinion of the teacher about the role of aviation in Belgium? What about possible arrangements in the Belgo-Russian transportation sector?
My third question concerns the geographical changes occurred in the whole logistics structure. The possible involvement of Belgian companies she caused large landslides in the Belgian investment in infrastructure in Central Africa?

Mr. H. Leclercq. - Congolese banks treated the business through their subsidiaries here. Kinshasa was a center very well equipped to make the export of raw materials. This was also true of Bujumbura. It's the same network; things have not changed.

Paul Wille (VLD). - I'm talking about Belgian structures.

Mr. H. Leclercq. - These are the same Belgian networks that play, provided that there are still networks in Belgium. Indeed, at the time, there was the Societe Generale de Belgique, Belgolaise and Sabena, but all that has disappeared.
Take a case to date. Kinshasa-Brussels line was one of the most profitable lines of air navigation. It was obviously a highlight of Sabena, even after the looting.
Maritime transport has disappeared, the NBC no longer exists. The Belgians have acquaintances with Swedish firms. Aside Lippens candy and a little Texas in textiles, I see more very important Belgian interests in Africa.
For the Belgo-Kazak is something else. In Kazakhstan, we can not talk about big traders but treatment specialists coltan. All these raw materials were processed by Kazakhstan.

Mr. Chairman. - On behalf of the Committee, thank you, Professor Leclercq, for your presentation very informative. It is possible that we asked you in the future provide us with more details about the Great Lakes. The Committee's mission is to determine the extent to which legal or illegal trade of raw materials maintains the state of war. It will also seek to define what any Belgian legislation and international agreements which could contribute to ending this type of situation in the Great Lakes region where the population was severely tried.

Ms. Paule Bouvier. - Thank you for inviting me to this important meeting. I hope I will not disappoint you but it is difficult to take over from my colleague, Hugues Leclercq. Beside his very informative, I seem very theoretical. But I think if the political level, it was necessary to have an approach based on the event, we would still be there in eight days. So I'll use a more theoretical approach.
Let me begin by disposing of an old myth is that of competition, even a certain antagonism between the Catholic University of Louvain and the Free University of Brussels. First, my colleague Hugues Leclercq and me, we get along very well. Then you'll realize immediately that he has traced the theoretical background that I will greatly facilitate the task. Ultimately, my presentation will be very complementary to his. Like him, I think that Africa as a whole - not just the Great Lakes - is ambiguous and shifting. Often under the guise of stability, hiding latent conflicts, and Côte d'Ivoire is there to prove it. On the other hand, African insecurity, instability and conflict often hides and reveals rather false changes the status quo.
The questions we ask at this stage are as follows. First, as translated very well exposed Hugues Leclercq, why Africa is so difficult for us to understand? Second, why the African Great Lakes is she now in the situation that is hers?
I do not intend to work as a historian but I will outline a picture in the political order. Hugues Leclercq you spoke mainly of the Congo, DRC. As this is a commission on the Great Lakes, from time to time, I will mention one or another aspect of Rwanda and Burundi.
Like my colleague Leclercq, I begin with a certain number of reminders for you will probably be obvious. However, I think it is good to recall a certain number of facts well known but it is useful to bear in mind when trying to analyze the present situation.
Belgian colonialism as such has never been behind in any case, a company of the Belgian State. This means that, unlike a number of other colonial powers - Portugal, Britain, France - Belgian colonization was lacking in the original vision of imperialism. Our camps are inherited, the legacy of the Congo Free State, of course.
We inherit still an entity that has already been handled. It is the same for Rwanda and Burundi. Rwanda-Burundi is a legacy of the First World War because it is in the form of a League of Nations mandate that we inherited from the entity subsequently under UN trusteeship.
I want to draw your attention to the fact that this also implies, despite a number of common denominators, two different types of colonization. To mention only the UN trusteeship, Belgium was forced to issue an annual report of the Trust Territory of the United Nations, which it obviously was not the case for the Congo. So there was a freedom to manage much larger in the case of Congo than in Rwanda and Burundi. The differences were also related also to the traditional system of these two entities.
Mr. Leclercq referred to the geographical aspect of the Congo. It should be noted that this country, in addition to its resources, constitutes a geographical entity but also making the ethnic characteristic, compared to other African states not to have a truly dominant group overwhelms the other. (This is true at the regional level eventually, but this is not at the entity level Congo as such.)
It's very different from what is happening in Rwanda and Burundi, but I will not do here in anthropology, which would lead us too far. If, initially, the dualization ethnic Hutu / Tutsi was not what it became, in part because of colonization, there is the social problem of the Hutu who prey on the elite group of Tutsis. This fact will change the nature of the proxy system of guardianship in these two countries and significantly influence the future.
This is not the case in Congo, where traditional structures will be further disrupted by colonization as in the case of Rwanda and Burundi.
All independence, both in the Congo than in Rwanda or Burundi, go wrong. Everyone knows the case of Congo and I will not. Regarding Rwanda, it is the same, but this is not the turning point of independence as such which is decisive but the issue of decolonization and the so-called social revolution, which I ' have already alluded. (That is to say Hutu revolution that attacks the former Rwandan ruling aristocracies, aided and supported by colonization which also attacked the ruling elite.) This situation leads to the existence of groups refugees in neighboring territories, Uganda and Burundi, a problem that will never be resolved and is still at the root of current problems of these countries.
In Burundi, things seem to have spent a little better but I would still recall the assassination of Prince Rwagasore, this popular aristocrat who, had he lived, would doubtless have given a totally different look at plan that would settle in Burundi.
All this led to discredit the Belgian colonial guilt and Belgium about the events while I believe the Belgian colonization, ultimately, was even slightly better than other settlements because the eve of the great movement of decolonization, Belgium was still cited as an example, at least in Central Africa.
This trend, absolutely not linear, is experiencing convulsions. Although Mobutu has been demonized, he had his moment of glory. In the eyes of some, at some point, it appeared, at least, as the star of the Francophonie. He even was part of a peacekeeping mission in the Middle East. If we follow the intricacies of what happened in Congo, we find that the policy has worsened the rate of dislocation of the economy.
It's the same with what happened in Rwanda. Habyarimana has not been pointed out as the instigator of the genocide, even if it has, of course, played that role. In the early days of his regime, Rwanda was cited as a model for rural and community development. Relatively speaking, Rwanda has attracted to him an important part of cooperation funds.
Finally, Burundi has been, too, his moment of glory during the 1993 election. They were also regarded as a model and had undergone major civic education campaigns and explanations of what would be the constitution. These elections are very well. A parliamentary commission was also there and everyone was extremely complimentary about their organization and their conduct of these elections. Of course, you know the rest.
Indeed, the whole process started will lead to the degeneration that Mr. Leclercq recalled.
I return to a known point that is worth repeating. This is how each of these three systems has been exploited by power politics, ethnicity as such. Under the Habyarimana regime, it is quite evident in Rwanda and I think it is not necessary to insist. There is a real demonization of so-called ethnic Tutsis. We may return to this concept but I will not do here.
The Rwandan regime and the Habyarimana regime has in fact never wanted to solve the refugee problem and obviously the latter that, at some point, re-emerged, especially during the military offensive in October 1990. From that moment, following the will of the Habyarimana regime to remain in place, this phenomenon of demonizing the Tutsi ethnic group becomes incitement to genocide.
In the case of Burundi, the problem will be different. It will be managed quite differently. Instead of using the dispute as a basis for ethnic political mobilization sure, the ethnic phenomenon will be denied for long: Burundi is the unity of Burundi and the Burundians. This is also true to some extent to the Congo where the theme of unity is ubiquitous throughout the Mobutu regime in any case, despite attempts at secession and the problems that were encountered. It is unity with the size, the country's wealth, resources ... etc.. In the case of the Mobutu regime, the use of authenticity as the value of negritude, African value, not specified in the Congo and its ethnic diversity, would of course not possible. The whole problem of the explosion Rwandan and Congolese implosion leads to the phenomenon of degeneration that Hugues Leclercq well marked. How to explain it on the ground not economic but political?
To attempt to do so, I will rely on three registers. First, the institutional record. There Congo, as in all states of the world, a head of state, government, parliament and judiciary.
I would say, a somewhat caricatured, you can forget everything except the head of state because the executive actually does carry out the decisions by the head of state, parliament is a chamber Endorsement and the judiciary is also completely subservient to the Head of State. It is therefore somewhat institutions screen. Nevertheless, they are institutions that exist and come back to the fact that all this makes the situation somewhat ambiguous and confusing.
Since it is neither the executive nor the parliament decides there is clearly a policy center that focused on the head of state, but the head of state as dictator can still not govern alone.
Around the head of state, there are at least two circles. A first circle which is his office, his relatives with him and helping to make the decision. In the case of Rwanda, is the famous Akazu which has been much talked about. In the case of most heads of state, but it is often quite mysterious. There are occasional names that emerge but it can also be the marabout, the private doctor, wife, mistress, to quote Leclercq, God knows who.
The second circle, by cons, is better known and is public. Is that some politicians have called the barons of the regime. It is a relatively closed group which is the basis of recruitment for the Head of State in which, according to its arbitrary and inclinations of the moment, they will choose, will return, will ship in exile, recalled. It is a closed group but in which a kind of rotation occurs.
So much for the actors. What then are the political practices? I do not teach you anything, they are very well known. Leclercq has spoken.
First, predation. I draw your attention to a concept often used in regard to political practices in Africa. In Congo in particular, has often spoken of the neo-patrimonial state. This is particularly Jean-Francois Medard, the French Africanist who brought this concept to the fashion that was quite violently contested by that other great French Africanist what Jean-Francois Bayart.
In my case, I agree with the opinion of Jean-François Bayart. I do not think it is a neo-patrimonial state because the neo-patrimonial state means that state resources are appropriate and managed as one would manage his household goods, but it means that there is indeed management. While, when we talk of predation and predatory state, it means that there are simply grabbing revenue squandered on conspicuous consumption of all kinds and there is virtually nothing that is reinvested in the national economy. It is therefore predation pure and simple.
Second practice extremely important patronage. It exists everywhere, of course. However, clientelism erected stage system of political management is a feature of Africa. For me, clientelism does not amount to outright corruption. It is a set of chains that start from the top of the political pyramid and descend, step by step, personalized relationships between patrons and clients to the base of the pyramid national trading system in a personalized, with a unequal relationship of higher to lower: the boss brings something but the customer pays something. This exchange ratio of traditional bases. Clientelism becomes a cascading system of redistribution and it has really formed the basis of the political system during a period.
I recalled to memory the problem of personification of power is acquired for everyone.
Moreover, despite all the appearance of an extremely strong and concentrated power, there is factionalism in the political apparatus. This factionalism is located within the second circle I mentioned around the head of the state where disputes do occur because of factions inside the circle, the barons of the regime are competing. This factionalism will pass at some point in the political movement that I mentioned earlier.
I have not spoken to the army or all instruments of power as this would lead us too far.
Such a mechanism can operate as long as a minimum of resources. Once the state is ruined, the client system and the pyramid collapses, the whole clientelist channels, pause, be dismantled, is in complete degeneration, resulting in a sort of shrinking area of exercise of power. The first circle around the head of state is increasingly restricted. The head of state is very aware of the degeneracy of the system, and a kind of paranoia takes hold of him. This applies not only to the Great Lakes but also for many African states.
Mistrust sets in and the circle around the head of state is shrinking. It is true geographically. Everyone knows that politics is in large capitals. However, Congo, Kinshasa is not even, it becomes Gbadolite. Now, to meet the head of state, it will go to Gbadolite, which obviously is not much wide of the Congo.
It is also true of a sectoral perspective, in the economy: we dropped everything except what can still bring scarce resources, not in the state budget, but in those of private finance who manage the state.
This narrowing of the range of exercise of power will lead to the almost complete disappearance of the state and the total chaos that just mentioned Hugues Leclercq. However, the person's head of state is driven by a morbid desire to maintain power. The exercise of power you can enjoy privileges. When you lose power, there is nobody. This hoarding, this desire to remain at the head of the state will result in consequences.
For the Congo, it will be the tactical stalemate of the National Sovereign Conference. The transition period lasted seven years, from 1990 to 1997. During this time, all the tactics used were stalled. To those who are interested in this period, I would strongly advise to read the book presented by Gauthier de Villers, in collaboration with Jean Masombo, describing and explaining the political chaos that had captured not only the Congo but also good many other African states.
In Rwanda, the result will obviously genocidal hysteria of the Habyarimana regime, which had never, in my view, any intention to implement the Arusha Accords.
The case of Burundi may be a little different but I think if the Buyoya regime has agreed to hold elections in 1993 how he organized them, because he was convinced he would win the election.
To explain this degeneration, we must also see how the population reacts. The latter has expressed vis-à-vis this type of plan by explosions, outbreaks of anger, which are then extinguished. I'm not saying it was lights straw but I can not say there were insurgencies and organized enough to be standing about a real popular uprising.
In fact, what one finds in particular - Mr. Leclercq has somehow demonstrated when he spoke of the informal economy popular - is the art of dodging, the culture of evasion.
Apart from these outbursts, we do not really confronts. It establishes the informal economy is organized, it creates its own channels, its own credit institutions. There was talk earlier micro-credit. These micro-loans are not necessary, since the DRC has the version of the tontine: the likelemba. There is thus a self-organization own in the Congo.
In addition, a regional phenomenon of empowerment is also under way. Mr. Leclercq also spoke.
There is also a socio-cultural disconnection, not to mention the dismantling families and society, the resurgence of the sacred, the phenomenon of churches, bigotry, not to mention all the deviant subcultures that arise, inter alia, youth. Moreover, there are no identified phenomenon of reconstruction both socially and culturally, too, a kind of fragmentation occurs.
All this is often ambivalent. In the case of the informal economy, new forms of solidarity appear, but as Mr. Leclercq said, many people are excluded. There is thus a phenomenon of inclusion-exclusion. On the cultural, traditional elements remain, but quite innovative phenomena occur. This is neither one nor the other. The informal economy is at the margins of legality, but one can not say that the system is completely illegal.
So what are today the essential features of the situation? Of course, on the macro level, governments have lost all legitimacy and legitimizing factor. There was an outbreak in terms of renewed popularity with the arrival of Laurent-Desire Kabila and those of Joseph Kabila, but this was quickly extinguished. What we see now, because of the exercise of power by Kinshasa but also the administration of areas outside of Kinshasa, is a micro-regional, coupled with an ethnicity that has taken root in many parts.
On the micro level, even within the informal economy, thus appear mostly micro-entities, and thus local communities, which close on themselves, which is also a necessity. The insecurity that prevails at present in effect creates mistrust and isolationism.
This form of ethnocentrism, atomization, in terms of both sociological and political, is, I think he, like the socio-political chaos that now characterizes the Congo.
This does not mean that the process is, once again, one way. There is also, and quite recently, at least in the case of the DRC, attempts at reconciliation. There is today an alliance between Bemba's MLC and the RCD Goma. I attended a meeting last Tuesday between the Congolese expert group to which Mr. Leclercq alluded representative and Bemba's MLC and the Representative of the DRC Goma that stand today as part of this alliance.
This is not only the fragmentation. Indeed, within these groups that can be called "cupolas groups," there already "factionalism" and sub-groups are extremely important. The entity is a blend Mai Mai groups, some more or less mafia, the other that can be described as rebels, as well as other rebels that are not really sure what to call them today. It is therefore much more ambiguous and complex than fragmentation. I also think, as Mr. Leclercq, and links remain. Even between the rebels and Kinshasa Ecuador, there are links, including family.
The second feature of the situation is obviously a growing complexity of the situation, firstly because the number of players increases. There are several rebel groups, domes, internal factions, groupings. External actors must also be taken into account: the aggressors who are allies of the rebels, allied to Kinshasa are seen by insurgents as external powers that should not meddle in the affairs of the Congo. These African players are now playing in the room, but also international players.
I come to the nature of conflict. Several conflicts coexist and interpenetrate but cling to each other. There is a civil war, interstate war, economic war, a war safe. All this will eventually balance the quest for power.
Why this is so difficult to decipher for us? Because we have our own methods of analysis. We live our political culture, with a Constitution, laws, institutions. We have our benchmarks and our criteria and that is how we reason within a certain rationality.
We forget all that if we try to understand what is happening in sub-Saharan Africa and the Great Lakes region in particular. Firstly because we are dealing with cultural pluralism. When I say cultural pluralism, it does not just say a number of cultural groups that coexist alongside each other. This means that within each group, there is a form of cultural mixing, and therefore, for each of these groups, there is an ability to situate themselves in alternating patterns of reasoning that will be different.
If they come to us, politicians Congolese, Rwandan, Burundian, use a line of reasoning, a presentation that suits us, or they think we agree, and which corresponds more or less to our criteria. If they turn to their people, they will use another register. If they talk to each other, it will be something else. But this cultural mix gives them the option of using separate registers, ultimately, a perfect good faith. This often traps us, us, because when we listen, we feel that all this makes sense. It must therefore be involved in these different registers to realize that there may be a number of discrepancies. So, nothing is pure to the limit, and nothing is healthy.
The functions that are performed are functions that are used to something else. The texts that are adopted are texts that are not intended to be applied. Repeat once more the story of the transition in Congo, it is highly illustrative in this regard. In addition, the correct information is difficult to obtain. Who knows today, the Congo, what is happening simultaneously in different regions of the Congo?
There are currently in Kinshasa a research company, Opinion Research, called Berci. The company, which has made a number of polls, in my opinion very seriously, prepare a very large national survey with funding important enough that I do not know the origin, however. The survey, which will be launched in the near future, it seems, will bring important lights. It is obviously not obliged to give total credit to an opinion poll but I still think that in the absence of any other information that will fill an important gap.
Despite the confusion and difficulties of approach, I nonetheless conclude on a cautiously optimistic note and I quote again my colleagues Gauthier de Villers and Jean Masombo, about the floor: it is a story Full of twists and turns but, ultimately, is not progressing. So you can stay on your old explanatory diagrams.

Mr. Chairman. - I want to raise two points, madam, for you contradict one another and to support you.
First, I think what you said about the elections in Burundi in 1993 is totally false. Buyoya was fully aware he could not win elections. He told me personally in tempore non suspecto, on 1 September 1991. He explained to me that time, the length and width, how the situation would evolve in the region after the elections, both in Burundi and Rwanda. I will never forget this conversation because subsequent events proved that he knew whereof he spoke and he was right on the line. I did not know at the time but later, history has confirmed what he had said.
On 1 September 1991, he explained how he had prepared the election because he wanted to prove to the international community that Burundians were perfectly capable of doing. The big problem was the army, to which he belonged, but I will not dwell on the subject because it is useless. He was completely sure he could not win the election and quoted me many reasons to support this assertion.
Then, a Zairean politician once told me: "We have the advantage of knowing you a hundred percent, because you've educated. These are the Jesuits who taught us how he had to act. Your problem is that you never made any effort to understand anything of our culture. "
I think he was right. He demonstrated this through various examples. During my career I have unfortunately had the opportunity to see several times that it was so. I note today that some Belgian politicians and others still commit the mistake of not wanting to understand these different registers. We keep making the same mistakes because there are always new ministers who believe themselves smarter than their predecessors.

Mr. Michiel Maertens (AGALEV). - Firstly, can we now distinguish differences between micro economic area in eastern Congo, occupied by foreign armies, and the area west of Kinshasa under the rule? If they exist, what are the differences?
Secondly, what is your view on international relations and especially financial policies with the patronage system during the years 1945-1990? What are the implications for the management of the state and the role of the World Bank in many African countries?

Ms. Paule Bouvier. - I would like to thank the president for the information he has provided. I can not challenge them because I never had the chance to meet directly with Buyoya. What we said is extremely important. I would like to add that two weeks ago, I was in Kinshasa, in a conference on the protection of women and children in armed conflict, organized by a sub-agency of the United Nations. A diplomat, official representative of Burundi said that at the time, the government or, at least Buyoya's entourage was confident he would win the election.

Mr. Chairman. - It's quite another thing.

Ms. Paule Bouvier. - What happens there in these microsystems, firstly, to the east, on the other hand, in the west? It is very difficult to answer this question because to do so honestly, he should go and see what happens.
This popular informal economy and these microsystems are not related to the conflict period. When I was in Kisangani, where I led a development project in collaboration with the local university, the whole economy was already operating informally and was coupled with an economy of smuggling. You could then say that all border areas of Congo were undergoing some form of relative prosperity within the country. Indeed, they could trade with neighboring states. The famous eastern region of Beni-Butembo enjoyed the same prosperity rather exceptional that could not be understood without going that far and not see that that was what cross-border trade brings prosperity. These microsystems are not new. They persist today in a conflict situation and are often the only way to ensure survival. Without them, the Congolese population would be wiped out long ago.
It should show how the presence of armed groups - I will not speak of `rebel '- and this conflict affects the existence of these micro-companies. In the region of the equator, where communication networks have virtually disappeared, these microsystems can no longer function. We came back in the proper sense of the term: a subsistence economy. But honestly, I can not answer your question more. I think in the west, in the Lower Congo, for example, it may well remain.
Your second question is about knowing how to design international relations, given the patronage system that the authorities of the international institutions could not be unaware. Good question. It is quite embarrassing because it forces me to say nasty things. I'm not sure that international institutions and their authorities were well aware of the depth and importance of this patronage system. The latter was a true system of government. I do not think this has been clearly perceived. When the authorities come and discuss international institutions in a particular country, with whom they discuss? With governments, the director of the central bank, with the authorities, so with those at the top of the pyramid. Of course, they will not say how it happens vis-à-vis the international authorities or they will try to use some of these funds to fuel their patronage channels. It is not at all sure they were aware of how it worked under government authorities.
As confirmed by your president, government officials who talk to our governments, with the authority of international institutions, use the registry institutional, legal etc.. So there is a thick fog. If you do not try to decode, decrypt, and go further in this matter, we fooled the system. This was one of the thoughts that made me a fellow Anglo-Saxon speaking of Africa's external relations by saying that very often in these negotiations, we still believe that it is we who hold the power, but very often we are simply duped by the dialectic of contacts we have in front of us.

Mr. Chairman. - During our contacts, every time we fall in love with the Africans.

Mr. Jan Remans (VLD). - What about the influence of churches, given the existence of these micro-companies? How did people react to the departure of the missionaries? What influence has the indigenous church does with the cardinal and other church natives?

Ms. Paule Bouvier. - Regarding the role of churches, the answer is not simple and differs in the three countries since it is known that in Rwanda, the Catholic Church has been accused by the current holders of power in Rwanda. There were also problems in Burundi.
Congo, the situation is much more complicated due to a scattering of churches much more pronounced than in Rwanda and Burundi. That's what's happening today. Churches of all kinds appear and they are relatively influential.
However, you may have noticed that throughout the transition period, Monsignor Monsengwo played a role at the National Sovereign Conference. So there was a desire for the church to play this role as mediator until the situation has stalled with the result that we know.
Despite what you say and despite the departure of missionaries, the church has often been one of the institutions on the ground, has maintained a certain capacity for training and economic support and assistance to populations. Nobody can deny the role that churches played.
In the current situation, it is beyond the churches, it also applies to some NGOs working in the field, from the moment you get involved in this way, you appear in one way or another as the support or ally of training involved. You may therefore negative labels that can sometimes be completely unfair.
In conclusion, we can not give a qualifier to the role of the church. His role can not be other than to marry the meandering path of political and economic environment in which it is located. Therein lies the problem of organizations working in the field.
GR 4 - Friday, December 7, 2001
Hearing of Mr. J. Peleman, director of IPIS

(President: Mr. Andrew Geens)

Mr. J. Peleman. - I am not an expert on Africa. My expertise is limited to knowledge networks involved in trafficking of raw materials and weapons and in providing military aid, sending instructors and mercenaries and the use of means of transport in the arms trafficking. This expertise can of course be useful to the study of legal and illegal exploitation of raw materials from the Great Lakes region and the link between the exploitation and the war effort of the various belligerents.
This expertise is drawn from any textbook. My methodology is to look at me at great length on the subject, read as much as possible, trying to learn from other experts and I forge a reputation in the long run making me a hub of information. Many journalists, researchers, NGOs and even dealers come to me. Each meeting gives me bits of information I can provide a complete picture of the situation. I try to follow the evolution of different networks, intermediaries, businesses and key stakeholders. I'm not only the Great Lakes but also other regions torn by conflict such as Sierra Leone, Liberia, Guinea, part of southern Africa and Angola.
Angola is not for the Great Lakes region but the conflict that rages there is in part the key to solving the Congolese problem. On the balance of forces in the region, Angola is undoubtedly the main actor on the international scene and within the region, including Congo's neighbors, such as Uganda and Rwanda, Central African Republic and the Congo - Brazzaville. Do not underestimate his role and that of the Angolan war economy, which is partly embedded in the Congolese war economy.
Always for Angola, income from trade in UNITA diamonds are often opposed to the revenues generated by oil. This country is the sixth largest diamond producer in the world and the Angolan diamond worth more per carat than diamonds Congolese. Those who believe they must defend the Antwerp diamond believe that we must especially interested in oil revenues because they are superior to those of diamond.
This is certainly true but we must not forget the crucial role played by diamonds in Africa for plans including war economies.
Large oil contracts and probably other large contracts for raw materials, Congo, in the hands of multinationals. A very small elite sees increase his bank account in Switzerland through the bonus earned by the leasing of oil reserves. This is not the case for diamonds, coltan and gold.
For diamonds, there is a different phenomenon. From top to bottom, there is a chain from generals to men in the field, through the local warlords and aid camps (WOs), and all earn their pocket money through diamonds.
This is not the case with commodities such as oil, copper or cobalt. They are under a single contract can be reviewed after a few years and whose legal status in the African context is perhaps not so obvious. Substantial under-the-table payments are probably one or two important intermediate regime and in the person of the president and his immediate family. A very small portion of that money back to the pyramid of people who also benefit from the war economy. It is different for the diamond.
The basement Congo is rich in raw materials. Considerable investment projects on the table during the handover between Mobutu and Kabila and the agreements signed by both the outgoing government of Mobutu by the new regime, however, produced little tangible effect on the ground. Bonuses are largely distributed in advance. The party has not been paid may have served the final blow for Kabila. In wanting to renegotiate the agreements already signed, he went antipathetic to its sponsors for the first time. For the same reason that some states that had initially opted for Kabila because of the huge interests at stake, then considered an unreliable partner. All these contracts are still pending and their fate will often be decided in international courtrooms.
The situation is quite different for the diamond. Since the beginning of the wars in Congo, production and export of diamonds have been growing. According to figures published by the National Centre of Expertise, dissolved last year, exports of diamonds have been 200 to $ 250 million annually until the mid nineties. Currently, these figures have at least doubled. Whoever controls the volume of export in the field, counter after counter, buyer after buyer, would certainly succeed in a volume two or three times larger.
This means that diamond exports annually exceeds one billion dollars, including diamonds in Kisangani, located in the rebel zone, and the diamond province of Ecuador, for which no figures are known. It is unclear precisely what the diamond is controlled by Bemba or Ugandans and how much it is. Mobutu had personal diamond mines in the area and did not like the numbers that are published on the amount extracted. The situation has not changed.
It is of course always very difficult to give figures. In recent years I have collaborated with several UN studies. I had many conversations with the ministers of mining in many African countries. Most of them agree that the statistics on exports of diamonds they make up only 10-20% of the volume actually exported. They readily acknowledge that the rest escapes.
Assuming that the situation in Congo is better, which is very unlikely in present circumstances, the figures I just cited, three times the official statistics are still largely underestimated. It could be several billion dollars.
My knowledge of world diamond is however still rather limited since it is extremely difficult to work with good informants of the world diamond. We get good information that confronting people with facts, photos and documents, in other words they put a knife to his throat. We must also never forget that this information comes from unreliable people, namely the diamond who speak ill of their closest competitors. When we want to establish the truth and ask for data and documents, we run the code of silence that prevents any serious study.
I focus on the diamond because it is currently the main raw material of the Congo and it largely determines the attitude of junior officers in the field, Zimbabweans, Namibians, Ugandans and Rwandans.
It seems pointless to study the statistics of Rwanda and Uganda. Together, these two countries export only a few million dollars. The import figures are in Antwerp, also a source of incomplete information on exports from these countries. Yet the fact that at one point, the Rwandans and Ugandans, who were allies against Kabila senior, have been at loggerheads in Kisangani, can only be explained by the great interests which had been the president of Rwanda and officers on the ground in the trade of precious stones.
Belgium should not be afraid to use the term "corruption" in the international arena. We need to break these taboos. Corruption and war economy are directly linked. It is not only the direct corruption on the ground but also networks that link the war zones to international markets.
We can not deny the role of Antwerp as 90% of trade in rough diamonds pass one way or another by this city. I admit that it is wrong that Antwerp is the only city mentioned in this folder. Considerable research has been conducted in Belgium for the last work of the Monitoring Mechanism on sanctions against Angola. The experts analyzed in detail the individual bills of Belgian diamond. This was not done in Israel, India or New York. The frustration of Belgium and the Diamond High Council in Antwerp is very understandable in this context.
But we must recognize that Belgium and the Antwerp diamond world continue to react defensively to such reports, whether the work of NGOs or organ more worthy of respect as the UN Security Council United. Antwerp does not commit the resources necessary to effectively deter traffickers.
Kimberley agreements are not really a deterrent. They are in effect on the diamond included in the count so that, by definition, smuggling is not included in the statistics. Although I work for an NGO that has conducted studies for NGOs associated with the Kimberley Process, I want to keep some distance towards this process is merely a formal exercise. It finally came back to say that an additional document is required in the sale process of the diamond. But the war economy is not in the statistics. The certificate of origin is therefore a joke and might even become the perfect means to launder conflict diamonds.
The problem is not in conflict diamonds but in the larger whole of which it forms part, the illegal diamond or diamond smuggling. Belgium, the Supreme Council and policy should be a clear message and find a real deterrent. It is excessive to say that the entire diamond trade is rotten but do not consider abuse as a marginal phenomenon.
The diamond industry has certain characteristics. This is an informal, diamond is a product that pays cash in dollars, the world diamond to hate paperwork. Impose a procedure using official documents will not have many results.
Deterrence through the example. The turmoil about the international diamond war lasted over two years but no trafficker has been arrested. The conflicts in Sierra Leone and Angola, where agreements Kimberley and the UN are the conflict diamonds, are far from over. The rebels of Sierra Leone still control diamond areas. While a major disarmament agreement was signed in May and that the UN gradually taking control of territory, the rebels still derive a lot of money from the diamond, as much as before the introduction of the certificate of origin in Sierra Leone.
The war is not over yet but no trafficker has been arrested or in Belgium or elsewhere in the world. This is due to a lack of proactive. I know the sting operations that are to attract the suspects in a trap is prohibited by Belgian law. But one or the other operation could be established in collaboration with countries of origin. Enough names of notorious traffickers and direct sellers of Unita diamonds or circulate RUF, as well as those persons involved in trafficking to Congo.
In all likelihood, a monopoly has been attributed to massive buying of diamonds in Kisangani. We may know who it is. Our intelligence can not they follow the actions of these people? Military attachés can they follow to gather evidence?
I conducted surveys for the United Nations as an expert in weapons. In six months we have managed to get six files for the complete range of Liberia. We provided information from the purchase to transport through the corrupt customs, end users etc.. One month after the publication of this report, there were three arrests.
The United Nations will inform the countries concerned. There may be no convictions but a number of people involved are in jail and their names were published in the press.
In the middle of the diamond, diamonds stolen often reappear sooner or later. But for diamonds, traffickers can not be located. It's totally implausible.
In Belgium, the expertise is organized by the GISS, the services of the Department of Justice and the new police service of the diamond. The blacklist of the names circulating but our security services and our investigators are refusing to go beyond borders. Belgium must be proactive and warn officials of countries of origin. If the Belgian authorities suspect someone of something beyond the funding of parties in conflict, they must ask the cooperation of local authorities to verify that this person exports. They should consider the possibility of control at the airport. They may also propose that the Angolans were sent to Belgium.
The GISS writes beautiful reports, but it is not enough. must also commit acts.
It is not only the reputation of Belgium, but also to put an end to conflicts in which the traffic of diamonds and other raw materials has become very important. The players on the field have an interest in maintaining a war economy rather than move to a normal situation and conclusion of agreements.
Therefore this problem is urgent. Belgium is ridiculous when it says it plays a role in the trial of Kimberly when she sends representatives to conferences and invites all NGOs, as if it were only to get rid of the problem. We must watch what it is actually. NGOs who have begun a campaign on conflict diamonds may have been too naive and research may not have been quite extensive. Perhaps they have been somewhat influenced by the receptions of industry lobbyists and certain Member States, but the idea behind the campaign was correct, that some conflicts continue precisely because of conflict diamonds .
It is very important that Belgium has set up a commission of inquiry and hope that it will put pressure on politicians, industry and the High Council, services and policing will be encouraged to take the matter seriously. This is not only the reputation of Belgium and Antwerp diamond is at stake, it is also a problem away from us but in which Belgium is largely involved in letting it continue funding rebels .
There is a direct link between the traffic of diamonds and arms. Some are both diamond and negotiators in the arms trade. Some of them are involved in the diamond trade in Antwerp. Recently, The Washington Post reported on the possibility of a link between conflict diamonds and Al Qaeda. We're 90% certain that there are circuits brokers not only in Belgium but also in Pakistan, India, the Persian Gulf, the Sultanate of Oman and United Arab Emirates which have direct links with the financing of so-called Al Qaeda. Representatives of the Antwerp diamond industry are linked to these circuits. Do not focus solely on conflict diamonds. The greatest threat to the diamond industry is not directly conflict diamonds, is also organized crime.
If we talk with people from the diamond trade, trying to buy lots of diamonds on the ground, many of them say that the market is impossible for the moment, that prices on land are higher that Antwerp. This clearly shows that where there is a war economy, buyers are not affected by the value of the diamond market by value but illegal or political. This means that this is not the value of the diamond that matters, but the fact that in this way, the rebels may be sponsored, for example, help overthrow a regime.
We must recognize that the diamond trade can easily be infiltrated by organized crime. This infiltration is a real fact. The war economy attracts organized crime like a magnet.
The statistics on diamonds and the Kimberley Process provide no conclusion regarding the financing of conflicts. The Kimberley Process can generate interest from industry and the States concerned. He puts the topic on the international agenda.
We are dealing with specialized networks of crime which are incorporated in the territories in conflict. They have direct access to the plans or rebel leaders, international markets and financial systems. There are also links to Russian organized crime and with Al Qaeda.
It is not just a war economy, but criminalizing the economy. That is why the case should be opened.
What I recommend most services law enforcement and political authorities is deterrence. We must clearly tell the industry that the diamond trade can be more than tax evasion, organized crime can exist and that some important figures should be adopted.
These goals are needed on the ground in the short term, but they will be successful in the long term.
Some fear that the diamond trade moves to Israel or other diamond centers if we take strict measures. This is not my opinion. Large diamond assets in Antwerp are already working globally. Markets are already globalized. The diamond has many reasons to stay in Antwerp: the location, near De Beers, the tradition, the fact that Belgium is a relatively safe country for them and that are easy links with Africa.
We must abandon this defensive posture and pursue a proactive policy. There has not yet had really good reports on the traffic of diamonds, but names of people who fund large-scale conflicts in Africa are circulating.

Mr. Michiel Maertens (AGALEV). - The presentation focused mainly on the diamond. So far, there is more spoken of coltan, which Mr. Peleman can certainly talk to us.
According to Mr. Peleman, there is a blacklist containing the names. He says there is a real link between arms dealers and diamond smugglers. Belgium is concerned, and I quote in this connection Victor Bout, who is extremely rich and freely circulating in Africa, but has also been reported in Ostend.
Mr. Peleman application of deterrence, but it emerged yesterday that the arrest warrant at the European level is not easy. The Italians are opposed.
Mr. Peleman can give me more concrete information on criminals and organized crime?
On the basis of previous hearings and publications, we can assume that there is a link between Belgian firms and a number of people on the ground, through the counters, sending coltan in Europe and different places in the world . Belgian firms quoted in the UN report may be associated with this trade. Our Committee should be able to draw the map of these links. Can you tell us who is who on the field?

Mr. J. Peleman. - I have avoided naming names. In the UN reports, it is easier to name names because the experts of this organization can not be prosecuted. In a closed meeting, I would accept gladly give you my own blacklist. Victor Bout might be named because he has a bad reputation.
As regards the European arrest warrant and the refusal of Italy, I want to make grades. Minin with the case, the prosecutor showed Monza he took the matter seriously. Leonid Minin, a leader of the mafia in Odessa, was arrested in August last year for a trivial incident with some prostitutes. It was found in him a small amount of cocaine.
The documents found during the arrest, Minin was proved that much more than occasional customer of prostitutes. He was imprisoned. He was released for a short period of time, but for now he is back in jail. Attorney Minin in Monza continues to violate the embargo against Liberia. The only Italian element in this case is that the plane carrying weapons to Liberia went through Italian airspace on his return.
Even if Italy does not have extraterritorial legislation, judicial authorities have demonstrated courage. For over a year that Minin was imprisoned. An important leader of the Ukrainian mafia involved in money laundering, fraud raw materials - including the diamond trade - and arms trafficking, is thus excluded from circulation. The trial will take place next year. It may not happen in a conviction, but it will still be created as a deterrent. The fact that the UN has found that Minin's private jet was used to transport weapons from Burkina Faso to Liberia, despite the embargo, was sufficient to Monza prosecutor to prosecute.
I owe my expert status to my Belgian nationality and the fact that very many cases of arms trafficking and diamond trade takes place in my immediate surroundings. Traffickers pass through Belgium. This should encourage the judiciary and the law enforcement agencies in their life difficult.
Victor Bout was involved in trafficking arms to almost any region of Africa in conflict. It's called the McDonald's of arms trafficking in Africa. It is also directly involved in the investments in coltan and, through its direct links with Bemba in investment plans in northern Congo.
Previously, Bout flew for Unita. Currently, he flew to the Angolan government. You see that money plays an important role in these economic conflicts.
End is present in all countries bordering the Congo. It has companies in Rwanda, Uganda. It organizes flights to Bunia, Kisangani and Bukavu. Bemba moves with helicopters Bout.
Bout is also directly involved in the diamond trade. Two of his acolytes, and Sanjivan Ruprah, have diamond mines in the Congo.
Ruprah I interviewed in connection with the issue of Liberia. He did not hide it owned a diamond mine with the president. It is also directly involved in the smuggling of weapons into the region. These are just some examples of how these networks operate. I am ready to give you a list of names, but in private, because I expose myself to prosecution by providing names of people who are not yet convicted or against whom the burden of proof is not yet sufficient.
Members of my research institute went on the field and noted the names of counters located in Congo coltan. I am able to communicate.
Coltan has been highlighted by the first UN report on Congo. The price of coltan has fallen sharply in the international market. Many had turned to diamond, coltan, because until early this year, profit margins were high. Currently, stocks are made in the expectation of better prices.
Coltan and diamonds have many commonalities. One and one are often extracted using traditional methods. The officer can easily control the workers in charge of the extraction. It can transport them by bicycle, on behalf of several kilos of Coltan per day. When the price was high, it was worth. The diamond also has a high value without requiring large investments. In Congo, diamonds, coltan and casserite are easy to extract, hence their importance in the conflict.

Mr. Michiel Maertens (AGALEV). - A cartel has made it on the market coltan? The representative of ICT could accurately answer this question. The collapse of prices and stockpiling suggests that a cartel exists.

Mr. J. Peleman. - For coltan, one can speak of an international monopoly. I think mostly to large enterprises. Compared to the Congo file a direct link with traders or brokers is less obvious.
Large companies are represented at the Centre for Studies in Brussels, but it would be an exaggeration to conclude that the conspiracies being hatched at this level. I think it has brought on the international market, a sort of natural monopoly. It is unlikely that the land is involved and there is a direct connection with the financing of conflicts. Price fluctuations in the Congo are due more to chance. Do not see conspiracies.

Georges Dallemagne (SGP). - I would like to thank Mr. Peleman for his very informative and to address three questions that are based on the findings that relatively severe form.
You seem to say that the certification system is a little illusion, it does not really address the problems and it's sort of a joke. According to you, it does not really know the origin and supervise the marketing of diamonds. It's a pretty serious statement.
At the recent conference in Gaborone, everyone welcomed the certification process. The Belgian government has welcomed its efforts in this regard - I have before me the press release the Minister of Foreign Affairs. So, we congratulate one congratulates the advances that seem crucial for traceability, certification and marketing. It finally seems to distinguish between diamonds and "blood" and who is not tainted. You, you make a flat and you make serious accusations serious enough. You do not use the word "traceability". Does this mean that it is not possible today to determine the origin of a diamond and to follow its marketing channels? Could one imagine a more effective system than this? What are the arrangements put in place for this to work?
You talked about letting go and invoked the expertise available in Antwerp. You claim that we know who are the people who pass through our country, we have the legal instruments that allow us to stop them and we do not. It's a pretty serious statement. I think the closed session will know what people are concerned.
One argument used is usually a warning that too much pressure exerted on Antwerp cause a shift in trade of Bombay and Tel Aviv. But you've also said that the same operators working in Bombay and Tel Aviv, at least in part.
Moreover, according to information I received in Kinshasa last June 30, some of the diamond marketing channels from Kinshasa to Antwerp, then to Kinshasa to start once the value of diamonds valued. Then they transferred to other places. They would not be cut in Antwerp, which officially refuses these diamonds because of insufficient value, but would shift to other places diamond. Do you have any information on this? To what extent these different markets are they nested diamond? Are there any devices that might relate to Bombay or Tel Aviv? It is important that, overall, the diamond marketing can be done in acceptable conditions, not only in Antwerp, but in other places.
Also, would it not time to define, for the marketing of diamonds, which are radically different rules? We often talk about the gray market. We know that little is known about the entries in the diamond, the notification system is not entirely clear, nor taxes in that area. If my information is correct, it is based on profits, not turnover at different levels of marketing. Would it not time to have a diamond marketing that meets the normal rules of international trade?
Mr. J. Peleman. - I said that the certificate would not help solve the problem. I was still in Sierra Leone last week, the country presented as an example of the certification system. The objective of this system is to enable Sierra Leone to raise taxes on diamond exports and solve the problem of conflict diamonds. The situation in Sierra Leone is more exemplary than that of Angola and the Congo as the country had little other raw materials. The authorities recognize that the majority of diamonds used by rebels currently leaves the country with a certificate of origin and is therefore already bleached before even leaving the country. We thought, as experts of the United Nations to be the government's allies in the fight against the rebels and we thought we could put an end to international funding rebels. Nevertheless, it is generally accepted that one can not speak too strongly against the conflict diamonds from the rebel region otherwise it will be exported through Guinea and Cote d'Ivoire.

Paul Wille (VLD). - You say that only 10% of trade is practiced officially. If using a certificate of origin, I guess that's included in the overall statistics.

Mr. J. Peleman. - Possibly. However, the diamond field will affirm that the quantity of diamonds sent to Freetown, Sierra Leone, for export monthly, is still limited to a value of about two million dollars while the exports are sometimes much more or much less. Maintaining the same monthly volume simplifies the statistics. It is clear that there fraud in export volumes. Some diamonds pass through the certificate of origin as if the counter is not performing, it is closed. This also happened in Congo in the past. We share the idea that if the stores are not performing, there is fraud. The diamond thus maintain a certain volume. Taking into account the period of the year. At the end of the rainy season, the volume may increase or decrease and the beginning of the rainy season, the volume should logically increase because that is when the stones are washed. All these data are added to the document, but ultimately it just as much fraud. The timing is a problem. On the one hand, we want to tackle as soon as possible to the problem of conflict diamonds because people die every day because of the cruel practices of the rebels. On the other hand, it creates a system by which all countries produce, import or transit must sign international conventions, develop feedback systems and develop bilateral customs rules. This process will take years, even decades. Two years after its launch, has managed to establish a certificate of origin for Angola, Sierra Leone and Guinea. Yet half of stocks originating in Guinea has not yet provided the certificate despite being sent to Antwerp by official bodies. It should also wait dozens of other countries involved in the import, transit, production or export of diamonds before the Kimberley Process can be applied effectively. If the certificate is taxed at Sierra Leone, the amounts passing through Liberia, Ivory Coast and Guinea will inevitably increase. As these countries do not sign the agreement, the certification system in Sierra Leone is worthless because neighboring countries are beyond control.
Currently, the certificate of origin and the Kimberley Process which welcome all Member States, industry and some NGOs exist only in theory. Turning from theory to practice, we have perfect statistics and a clear vision of the entire diamond trade. It was found that during the introduction of a monopoly in Congo to monitor the diamond of the war, exports have increased over the Congo - Brazzaville where there is no certificate of origin. For now, the Kimberley Process represents nothing. There are two different calendars. We want first, that the cruel war of Sierra Leone cease and that the country finds the order. But on the other hand, the signing of all bilateral agreements and the establishment of a centralized Diamond Office to ensure safety from production to first export will take years. This is part of the Kimberley Process. Exporting countries are not able to do so. Moreover, it appears that members of the Kimberley Process are not really willing to provide funding. The diamonds, including diamonds in Kisangani, represent 4% of world trade and defrauded the diamonds represent 20 to 50% of world trade. The Kimberley Process does not address this problem.
In Belgium, we have good ways to change things. But, imagine that when I arrived in Belgium, I present a document of Zambia, a country which as everyone knows, does not produce diamonds. It is clear that my diamonds from the region of the Unita which extends along the border between Zambia and Angola. Two things are happening. First, the Belgian authorities do not ask questions. Then I must not show that I boarded the plane in Zambia. I could just as easily have come from Portugal and declare that I bring diamonds from Zambia. Of course, I had to declare the diamonds in Portugal when I entered the European Union, but again we do not ask me any questions at customs. Suppose the Belgian Customs knew a little diamond that Greek and Portuguese colleagues. Why practice a policy of laissez-passer if the international reputation of our country towards its former colony is at stake?
It is very easy to introduce diamonds. No documentation is necessary as long as I have a recipient. A deal with a diamond in Antwerp just registered. If there was a problem with the document, just call him by asking him to fax me another bill.
It should also be noted that with the Diamond Office in Antwerp, Belgium is the only country to have a centralized system of clearance of diamonds. One might say that the situation can only be worse in other countries. I am skeptical of the Kimberley process and I am not happy when an agreement was signed in Gaborone.

Georges Dallemagne (SGP). - This is not effective. We feel good compared to a process that is not effective. Ultimately, it simplifies, it makes life easier. Since it has documents that are somehow passes, this may strengthen the position of Brussels.

Mr. J. Peleman. - That's precisely why I said that the certificate of origin could become the ultimate whitening system. We all know that the generals are fighting against the Angolan Unita but are also the best intermediary for stones Unita go to market through the official system. So before you even leave the zone of conflict diamonds are laundered. Fighting against conflict diamonds we have the illusion of being allies of plans that are dealing with rebel movements, but in fact these plans permit system. In this regard, the Kimberley process leaves me as skeptical as both in Angola and Sierra Leone, the game is flawed. Do you think the diamond trade to stop five hours? We get rid of the problem too soon to say that Africa does business this way. We must be serious and at least take steps here and see if it leads to better results. Sierra Leone Will he protest due to export taxes it collects? Do not make me laugh! The total annual production of Sierra Leone covers more than 50 million. An export tax of 3% is levied which 1% goes diamond valuator, a Belgian. The country will there be rebuilt with the remains? Of course not. The country is poverty and corruption. Officially, a minister earns $ 25 a month. This does not allow him to buy silk socks he pulls to get to Kimberley. Trafficking of diamonds began in the field, the lowest level and continues at the broker, the counter of the airport where the package is declared for export and the general who conducts checks at the airport. The system works this way and lead the networks here. So we can do something here but we do not do it because we practice a policy of laissez-passer. Is it so hard to ask for a ticket or a visa to someone who says diamonds and claims to be from Zambia? However, we do not. Yet it would be easy to improve controls at this level. It requires no international conventions or laws better. You just need to be proactive.
The diamond marketing system must be completely transformed, also on the tax plan. Belgian taxation is indeed a problem. It says too little and too in Africa in Belgium for that profit margins appear smaller, because the tax is levied on earnings. The real benefit is difficult to determine but it is certainly higher than the 1-2% reported by Diamond. Profit margins are certainly more important. Is it controllable? It is very difficult and anyway, it depends on the expertise of the industry itself. Therefore, in Belgium, we have designed the Diamond Office, the customs house of the Diamond High Council, which works on behalf of the state and with people of the circuit itself so you can more or less assess the value of diamonds. The system works he really? No, because the Diamond Office determines that the value and does not address the origin of diamonds. In addition, the true origin of diamond is difficult to determine due to lack of traceability as all incoming packets are mixed. Currently, there is no embargo against Liberia.
Ironically, it is with a certificate of origin from Sierra Leone and Liberian diamonds entering the international market.
The system operates on the principle of communicating vessels. Traffickers told me that a number of lotsprovenant of Liberia resembled Kono diamond, a diamond from Sierra Leone. Other prizes like diamond Côte d'Ivoire pass through that country. They therefore play on the fact that lots of diamonds are hardly recognizable, at least not enough to constitute a valid proof in court.
The procedure of the certificate of origin can function only with the participation of all Member States. This raises the problem of timing.

Erika Thijs (CD & V). - The second UN report shows that the Congolese ministers and members of mine management transfer funds to the bank Belgolaise Brussels. The law on money laundering practices provides that amounts above 400,000 francs must be declared. Have you ever investigated it?
We observe the creation of numerous joint ventures, perhaps for money laundering, between the Congo and Zimbabwe between the Congo and neighboring countries. Have you already conducted investigations into these joint ventures?
It should create a deterrent. The enlargement of the powers of the International Criminal Court Rome-economic crime would be an effective way to fight against conflict diamonds and the illegal trade?
Last week, we heard a person of ICT. We asked the production figures of coltan, but we have not obtained, the witness who stated that no figures. Can you tell us?
Many mercenaries in Eastern Europe succeed in Africa. Many Russian weapons as well. Y there a link between these two phenomena? The mercenaries are they paid in diamonds?
Some time ago, we visited Kyrgyzstan with the commission of the Interior. Many businessmen are moving when there is not much business to be concluded. Why Europeans do they choose precisely the area to trade with Africa? Is it because the arms export takes place mainly from Uzbekistan, Ukraine and Russia?

Mr. J. Peleman. - I have not investigated the reporting system for large amounts that pass by the banks. I'm no expert in this field. But I think when a shipment exceeds a certain amount - 400,000 francs - all the banks ask the client why he received that amount, and they make a list. I do not think this data will result automatically in an investigation. I think these data are centralized and that the samples are taken on which it conducts investigations. I think they mainly tax evasion, not organized crime or money laundering practices, a fortiori as regards the subject of this inquiry. I'm not expert.
Numerous investigations have been devoted to joint ventures and interests of Zimbabwe, Namibia, Angola, Rwanda and Uganda in Congo. Documents related to this investigation are circulating in the international media. This is mostly of tricks at the highest level. Zimbabwe's President would have direct interests in several mines in the Congo. Only the highest level and businessmen and most influential generals in these countries have interests in the Congo.
The problem of mercenaries is similar. This is a kind of military goods. States Army to rent their neighbors or other countries, as do the Namibia and Zimbabwe.
What is the role of the international criminal court? The responsibility is always the Member States. Through its legal options and keeping order and despite globalization, the state that exercises ultimate control function. I hope that States will intervene more proactively, and they will conduct further investigations.

Erika Thijs (CD & V). - I happened to be in Angola at the time of the Kimberley Process. Some lamented the fact that Belgium could not really speak because the European Union controlled everything. One country alone can hardly put in place a monitoring mechanism.

Mr. J. Peleman. - Yes. In respect of customs, for example, the European Commission has suggested that the certificate of origin would be in contradiction with the principle of free trade within the Union. The EU does not recognize the certificate of origin for diamonds because it would conflict with WTO rules and free trade.
Currently, reporting is still through the national customs. The import of diamonds in the EU via Belgium should be a statement. This system works reasonably well. The diamond is declared at the border is sealed, goes to the Diamond Office in order to be controlled. If the diamond is entering the EU via another country, it goes less well. No other country has an institution such as the Diamond Board or experts. It is not at all certain that in another European country, diamonds from conflict will be identified. In addition, these countries are virtually incapable of fixing the value of diamonds.
But I think as long as we have our own customs at the external borders, we can fight against this problem. I think we should not be an excuse for the loss of certain parts of our sovereignty or transfer them to the European level or other levels to undertake nothing in our country.
What is the legal validity of terms such as "looting" or "illegal trade" in the Congo? The United Nations has opted for a certain definition. This is much less a debate than a legal international political debate.
In Liberia, Charles Taylor supported the rebels in Sierra Leone. So we should impose an embargo. Is underway. Rwanda and Uganda are also in eastern Congo, but it is unlikely that we impose an embargo on both countries. Regardless of my personal opinion on the involvement of Liberia, Rwanda or Uganda, we act here with two weights, two measures. From a legal standpoint, it is forbidden, but this is a decision of international politics. With regard to these practices, I do not expect much of international tribunals because it is ultimately very vague principles. For decades the gold in eastern Congo is exported via Burundi. Does this activity suddenly becomes illegal exploitation because Kinshasa has no control over the region? The answer to this question is probably political rather than legal.
We never asked about the gold that leaves the Congo through Burundi. Today, it has become an important topic.
IPIS led his small survey on the export of coltan. It will soon be published by some NGOs. It examines in detail how coltan has left the Congo by any counter. All subjects were interviewed, including most traders in Belgium and abroad. Thus we learn that some flights are not included in the statistics. Even while trying to interview until the last trader, we will fail to get all the numbers. I guess since the ICT does not have the data needed, even if there UNDP, IMF and World Bank international statistics on global production of coltan and the coltan supply market . In my opinion, it should be possible to deduce much of the actual data.
It is difficult to determine the quantity of coltan from Congo and know exactly who is responsible for this traffic. Can be transported not only through machines but also Sabena aircraft that were registered anywhere. It is therefore a question of theft in these ghosts of war economies. For the rest, I must ask investigators to IPIS if they have already arrived at specific figures in the investigation of coltan.
I'd check if IPIS can determine when coltan was exported and sold, because there have been significant fluctuations in the price of coltan. Only then can we get an idea of ​​the turnover.
With regard to mercenaries, it's not just the Eastern Europe. The Eastern Europeans have followed the South Africans, Britons and Israelis in the privatization of small armies that may play a role in certain conflicts. There are many examples, including Executive Outcomes and Sandline. In the mid-90s, many of these companies were very active in several African conflicts.
For most of their contracts, mercenaries have not been paid. Legal proceedings are still ongoing. The big advantage however is that these people were so close to the regime that gave advice, bought weapons for the regime and received in exchange for concessions. A network of small businesses therefore became apparent, the main form being unemployed adventurers who were recruited for a few dollars. In Africa, the helicopter pilot Russian or Ukrainian earn about $ 800 per month. They must work seven days a week by high-flying often. This is not where it goes most of the funds. The problem of arms trafficking to Africa is clearly linked to stocks of weapons of Eastern Europe. According to UN statistics, 60% are Kalashnikovs. These are legally produced in over 30 countries and illegal in some twenty other countries. It is therefore very difficult to trace the origin of these weapons, even if they have an identification number. 60 to 70 million Kalashnikovs unnumbered are still in circulation. We must first solve the problem.
Regarding the big contracts, there is often, but when it comes to traffic completely illegal, that concessions are granted government to government, and that training and provision of personnel or pilots are part of the contract . This happens in almost every country in Eastern Europe. Today, rather than selling helicopters, they are usually rented with driver and mechanic. Strategic operations to be performed are also often included in the leasing contract.

Alain Destexhe (PRL-FDF-MCC). - I have two quick questions. Firstly, can you say a few words about your organization? How you have to know so well in this market? Then, can you clarify exactly, having partially responded to the two previous speakers, what is the current legislation on the import of diamonds in Belgium? You said we should make a statement ... You talked about an Office of values, that does not exist in other countries ...

Mr. J. Peleman. - IPIS is a lot for the Flemish GRIP. Originally, it was a library of non-profit research, which gathered information relating to international relations in conflict zones. IPIS was founded in the early 80's by people belonging to the peace movements, such as Pax Christi, which greatly influenced his activities during the first ten years. In the early 90s, IPIS has become a specialized library and professional, with not only books but also magazines, publications of NGOs and contact addresses. The clientele was mainly composed of students of international relations and international law. Subsequently, the library has developed into a service of study and research. Personally, I am particularly interested in illegal arms trade, which led me to track these records. Since there are few experts in illegal arms trade, I became somewhat of a source of specialized information in this area, not only for journalists but also for the secret services and embassies. In recent years, we are trying to expand the team of investigators. I do not want to monopolize this knowledge because in the case or I would leave IPIS, it would deprive him of expertise. Currently, five investigators involved in this field.
IPIS staff is composed of seven technicians and six investigators. IPIS is partially funded by the DGCI rate of 2.5 million per year. The National Lottery and the province of Antwerp we give each year an amount of 200,000 francs. We strive to us self-finance through consultancy contracts. We conduct research and are building records for organizations or institutions with no profit and are non-governmental and unrelated to political parties.
Whoever wants to import a lot of diamonds in Belgium must have an invoice showing that the client is an accredited diamond Diamond High Council. About 2,000 diamond, board members can legally import diamonds. In practice, when a person in possession of a consignment of diamonds landed in the European Union, in Zaventem, it must declare the goods, presenting documents that certify the origin. Then the diamond parcel unopened and sealed in Antwerp is transported by Brink's Ziegler. The package is open at Diamond Office in the presence of a seller who has just delivered the lot in Belgium, who formally made the order, experts from the Diamond Office and Customs.
The expert from the Diamond Board "then compare the value of the stones of the lot to the bill. The diamond is then declared. The company was registered as a formal recipient need not be the buyer. Generally, such a company does ask the seller a percentage of the value of diamonds to be deemed official recipient of diamonds.
At that time, diamonds are negotiable and the seller or forward them to a trading exchange, the sponsor who paid to buy the diamonds in Africa, is involved in the search for a buyer of Antwerp. The buyer may be one of the accredited companies, the sale being concluded on the floor but this is not necessarily the case. To negotiate diamonds in Belgium, it is not necessary to be registered as a company with the Diamond High Council.
There is still a circuit diamond dealers and middlemen who are not registered may offer a better price for the lot or part thereof. A seller offers a lot of diamonds including industrial diamonds, colored stones, the "one carat", "two-carat" and larger stones. The "two-carat 'sold to specialists and it is the same for industrial diamonds. Each transaction results in a partial benefit. Specialists' two-carat "will distribute their stones into subcategories before offering them to specialists in these sub-categories. They provide probably the highest price for these specific lots.
The lots are constantly redistributed and mixed, which is a problem. Just think of the number of certificates of origin which must eventually be attached to a batch of diamonds. It becomes chaotic. Theoretically, the person who, for example buying an engagement ring, should receive the certificate which proves that the diamond was purchased "clean" in one or another mine.
This is how the system works in Belgium. The big advantage is that the expertise is held at the time of the estimate of the lot by the experts in diamonds. Exporting countries use a similar system, and in many cases, the Belgians are also playing the role of official experts, say the stones and feel the value. In exporting countries, an export tax should indeed be paid. No other country negotiator, as the United States, India and Israel, does not have such a system.
The advantage in Belgium is that industry experts are involved in the reporting and control stones. That is why it is so frustrating that Belgium, which holds a large share of trade in rough diamonds, is constantly blamed. Other countries have no system or specialized customs but they forget when they criticize us. If the Kimberley process has lagged far behind, because many member states have realized that the declaration and control of the diamonds are not simple.
The dealers registered between 1,500 and 2,000 affiliated to the Diamond High Council and a scholarship recipients are legal diamonds. Any diamond that is said should result in one of them.

Mr. Jacques D'Hooghe (CD & V). - You say that apart from these shops, there are many others. How does this work on?

Mr. J. Peleman. - Antwerp is a diamond wholesale market where large lots, about 5,000 to 10,000 carats, arrive and are placed on the market. I am a diamond, for example Rapaport. On paper, based on the invoice, it is the importer. Let he who introduced the stone is indeed a purchaser of Rapaport and stones are sold by Rapaport on a scholarship or he used the name of Rapaport in exchange for a percentage of the estimated value for subsequent sale to One of the other traders registered in Antwerp. Perhaps the stones they reappear in the circuit of big but they can also go to the retail or intermediate or first be trimmed. There is a whole circuit of registered brokers who are not necessarily included in the Diamond High Council. The diamond trade is not prohibited. Everyone can practice but only companies listed on the Diamond High Council can import.

Mr. Marcel Colla (· A). - You rightly distinguishes between on the one hand, the oil trade, that of cobalt and other products and secondly, because the diamond trade for the latter, there are many middlemen involved who can all gain something. Our Committee, however, in order to check what procedures intolerable can plunder the wealth of a country. When can we talk about looting? When the country does not receive the price worth its wealth and it enters into contracts economically unacceptable. From this point of view, oil and cobalt are also important and it does not change a person wins big or a hundred people earn a small sum. I would like to know if you have any information on raw materials like oil or cobalt, in Central Africa. Can you provide any information about it later?
I still have some questions about the diamond and maybe I'll play devil's advocate. You often talk about the diamond industry. Can I make a distinction between the diamond trade and the diamond industry? The industry deals with the size. One point, she collapsed while trade was flourishing. To what extent the processing of rough diamonds is there a way to hide the traffic? To what extent the problem of the diamond trade is it spread to the industry level, although activity has greatly diminished in our country?
What do you think is the relationship between diamonds that De Beers to enter our country and those who come directly from African countries?
We do not control if someone happens to us, for example, a parcel of diamonds from Zambia is actually there. To prevent smuggling diamonds are imported here via another Member State of the Union, this issue must be addressed at European level and a certificate must be issued by the country of origin.
If diamonds are exported with the official label of Sierra Leone, it is perhaps a political problem because of the money went to the rebels. However, it can hardly be said that the country has been looted since the state was able to levy taxes. So I understand your criticism vis-à-vis the system but I wonder if there really an alternative.
In thirty to forty percent of total world trade, they would be smuggling diamonds and three to four per cent of "conflict diamonds". These figures are correct? Are they as good for our country or do they relate to the world trade?

Mr. J. Peleman. - I tried to focus the discussion on the diamond. At the change of power in 1996-1997, transactions have been written down, never seen compared to previous investments made in Congo, even in the 1970s. In 20 years, never had such investments held: investments poured into pre-agreement concessions made to certain businesses. Some of these documents have been signed before that Kabila has reached Kinshasa. He already signed on behalf of the Congolese state, so that Zaire was still officially headed by Mobutu. It was very interesting to look at all these contracts. However, none of these pre-agreement has resulted in a contract. The concessions were subcontracted prospecting permits have been granted and many mining companies have begun to explore. In the mining industry, a long procedure before the actual conclusion of contracts. It must indeed check what lies underground. During a due diligence process, we estimate the expected value of production on five, ten and twenty years and the investments. Most agreements for cobalt, copper, gold and oil have never passed the stage of preliminary agreement. Companies have sent rolling stock in this region and began drilling. Two problems arose. First, Kabila, once came to power, has not respected the agreements it had concluded with a number of sponsors from the time he was still in the bush and was therefore found great difficulty. Congo, who played a real poker game, tried to renegotiate what was on paper, but large companies have refused. In addition, a number of these contractors were actually undertaken junior mining ", that is to say companies that work with venture capital. Because they do not invest in the region where their franchise, they do not add value to the local economy. By playing the stock market in Vancouver or Toronto they derive their profit. At the right time, they forged alliances with the rebels, to whom they sell the rights. They then hope to resell them for large enterprises that do well investing in the economy reflecting longer-term business junior mining.
All these contracts are still pending however. We know that many companies, "junior mining" and others, bought the rights to Kabila, and possibly also to the rebels today. The documents have value at the end of the conflict, when it will become truly interesting pump into the soil of money that will bring in ten or fifteen years.

Mr. Marcel Colla (· A). - Mr. Peleman right in the sense that the documents have not yet taken effect. There is a risk of looting. If Kabila father sold me at a ridiculously low price, rights in exchange for weapons and money to pay the balances and then if I sell these rights much more expensive, this amounts to a virtual looting of the country.
This looting has not yet occurred but there is a bomb. Moreover, there is not that contracts with Kabila, there are also general of Zimbabwe and Uganda ago. It is within this context that we must place my question.

Mr. J. Peleman. - It's easy to compile a list of known investors, but the number of contracts awarded under the table, will appear only later. I do not know by heart if Lundin acquired a franchise with such parameters or what is the value of reserves at current market price. Many of these contracts are known. In the early 90s, the research group of Professor Reyntjens has studied the issue, I got myself very interested. However, many of these contracts are pending.
It seems useful for the Committee to compile a list of concessions and their parameters, the estimated reserves and stakeholders. If the bomb exploded at a later date, we will have a record that proves that the contracts were concluded at a time trouble and that the concessions were sold below their price.
The inquiry commission could publish the names and information available to it and decide to leave this issue to sleep until disputes arise.
A major producer of cobalt, which has paid bribes remains a publicly traded company that has a reporting obligation vis-à-vis its shareholders. It is therefore possible to obtain information about it.
Listing gigantic fraud, the Bank of the Caribbean that existed only in cyberspace, has signed a contract for 60% of gold reserves in eastern Congo, with Wamba dia Wamba. For such cases, it is obviously apply to legal services in the country concerned. I do not know if you know the issue, but it is significant. The "International Bank of Grenada" had signed a contract with Wamba dia Wamba providing funding from the RCD-Goma, before its division. After this, the documents have been promptly updated. The "International Bank of Grenada" sponsored the DRC in exchange for 60% of the reserves of gold and diamonds in eastern Congo. The straw man of this bank was on the blacklist. The assets of the bank were insured by an insurance company established in the Dominion of Melchizedek, a biblical kingdom with its web site, recognized by the Republic of Central Africa, but having no other existence. We thus have information about such contracts.
Wamba dia Wamba claimed that Salim Saleh, brother of Ugandan President, the wound had to sign the agreement and had received threats if they did not. The document was signed by including a Mrs. Piskounov a wholesalers coltan in eastern Congo. It is therefore clearly fraudulent practices and organized crime.
These are interesting cases where it was clearly dealing with a robbery. It subsidizes the immediate strategic and military interests of the rebel movements, like the RCD, who agree to sell concessions at low prices. This serves the interests of these movements in the short term, but is detrimental to the interests of the Congo in the long term.
For other cases, many disputes between companies and the Congolese regime are pending before international trade. In 1998, two days that Kabila had terminated the agreement with Banro - the company behind Sominki - the conflict resumed. So many researchers saw a direct link between the interests of Banro - that Kabila was injured - and the beginning of the conflict.
Banro, a large mining company associated with a grant of copper and cobalt, would conclude that this still an agreement with the new regime in Kinshasa. For concessions within the territories of the rebels, the company would also concluded an agreement with the rebels agreeing to pay a tax on production. This information must still be verified. The sovereignty of the Congo is divided in two by the military situation on the ground, whose protagonists reflect.
This is one of the contracts that were modified recently. Many companies have relied on force majeure and have left the territories in 1998 and 1999. They signed agreements that have some legal value and can claim their concessions they deem appropriate. It is therefore a real bomb. It would be interesting to have a list of these contracts, which would show whether the agreed price is correct and whether it should support the Congo in renegotiating these agreements.
Another question concerned the part of De Beers rough diamond trade. For many years, this percentage was split half and half: half of what happens comes from London to Antwerp, so De Beers and the rest comes from Outside Markets, that is to say directly in a series of mainly African countries. In total, 90% of trade in rough diamonds pass through Antwerp.
The stones may go first to Israel and return after Belgium, then disappear into other markets. This new figure is the result including the decision by De Beers to stop buying diamonds linked to the conflict in Angola. Angola is a very large market. De Beers has upset all its strategy and is no longer present on the ground with buyers who try to control the independent trade. Now, De Beers is working any other way. It focused on Botswana, Namibia and South Africa. She still has contracts with many buyers on the ground, but Antwerp monitor increasingly independent trade of rough diamonds.
It was also asked about the control. Those who arrive in Zambia with a lot of diamonds and has naturally made a stop for an exit visa from the airport in Lusaka. It should still be able to control the minimum and the verification of the origin of diamonds, but this does not happen. Whoever said diamonds from Zambia should be able to prove that he went at least once in Zambia during the last three years. We do not ask such questions. Anyone can produce a bill with his laptop. Who will check whether this small company is registered in Zambia?
The import of diamonds in the European Union, via Amsterdam and then transported by car to Antwerp, poses a legal problem. Belgian law requires the reporting of diamonds entering Belgium, but this provision goes against European legislation which guarantees the free circulation of all goods within the EU. Yet I think that more could be done on the ground. The customs authority should require the registrant if he actually visited the country of origin.
I would like to dwell a moment on corruption in the country of origin. Arrest a trafficker carrying stones Kabila or another African president can actually lead to political and diplomatic problems. I admit that there is a risk, but we must try to break this taboo and daring to speak of corruption, whatever the political consequences. We are - or at least want to be - a state of law. We must not let these stones because they might belong to a president of any country and that this could cause a diplomatic incident. It would consider corruption as a given in Africa, and consequently in the diamond trade. I think this is unacceptable.
The Kimberley Process requires time, but what is the alternative? I am critical of this system because it has been greeted with enthusiasm as constituting a solution to the problem of conflict diamonds. It is assumed that this process would end the conflict in Angola, Sierra Leone, and probably also in Liberia and Congo. It will not be possible because of the schedule. Certainly, one can argue that the process will prevent the future to finance the rebels in the diamond trade and this is indeed a great advantage.
There is an alternative, namely to tackle smuggling. This is a simple problem of law enforcement that does not require the conclusion of international agreements. The Kimberley Process does not in fact the fraud, but the diamonds.
I can not give actual figures, but I think the traffic is about 30-40%. In Africa, experts say that 10 to only 20% of trade is controlled and the rest is defrauded without fees be collected. I admit that there is a difference between not paying taxes and finance the rebels, but the diamonds are from the fraud, which is one of the activities of organized crime. It is a serious data, which must be combated with all means available. The police and customs can be the first line, after which the court must do its job.
I think the international statistics on the volume and value of diamonds sold annually are false. International trade, in which all diamond markets are involved, is of a much larger volume, which does not appear in the statistics. Part of the diamond fraud are yet in the statistics, which explains the sometimes enormous differences between the figures of exports and imports in Africa to Antwerp. I am sure that large quantities of diamonds are freely traded and passed as dollars from one country to another.

Paul Wille (VLD). - According to Mr. Peleman, logistics is carried out on the field. There are real trade, but also the virtual commerce. This only amplifies the problem.
What happens there when sending raw materials? A link can be established with some countries? Those who provide the service and those who trade are they the same?
Who finances the trade? Upon arrival in Brussels, the client name must be declared, but at that time funding has long since begun. As to regulate the procedures prior to the commercial transaction?
Is this a business for cash or by credit documentary? In the latter case, documents should be produced and must be a description of the value and volume of goods. Why, in the past, do we have not disclosed the actual or potential wrongdoing?
The coltan trade is done in dollars. Due to the volatility of the currency futures contracts should be covered. I do not want to anticipate the conclusions of the commission, but should we not establish a regulatory body which would serve all stakeholders, including those who care about fair trade?
Vous plaidez dans votre exposé pour que l'on ne tienne pas trop compte de la dimension internationale et que l'on considère le problème plutôt sous l'angle de la Belgique. Mais si nous contrôlons trop sur le plan belge, même simplement pour nous donner bonne conscience, le commerce se réorganisera dans une large mesure. N'y a-t-il pas une contradiction entre votre approche du problème belge, sur lequel vous insistez, et la relativisation de l'importance d'un contrôle international, de la surveillance et des statistiques ? M. Jan Remans (VLD). - À côté des gros contrats d'exploitation, de grandes quantités de coltan sont également extraites de manière artisanale. La population peut-elle survivre sans cette activité minière ? Si l'on peut gagner tant d'argent grâce au coltan, qu'en fait la population ? Elle ne peut en effet le dépenser que pour acheter des produits de base. M. Michiel Maertens (AGALEV). - À Anvers, il existe un problème douanier mais aussi fiscal. Les chiffres des exportations provenant d'Afrique et ceux des importations à Anvers ne concordent pas. Les propositions de cette commission peuvent constituer la base d'une législation européenne et internationale. Il est important que ces propositions soient bien formulées. M. Peleman peut peut-être nous y aider. M. J. Peleman. - Le transport par route ou par les rivières est pratiquement devenu impossible au Congo. Les compagnies aériennes locales jouent donc un rôle très important dans l'importation illégale d'armes et dans l'exportation illégale de matières premières. J'ai déjà parlé des petites compagnies aériennes congolaises. Leurs opérateurs et leurs propriétaires sont souvent d'anciens pilotes militaires. Ils doivent utiliser des pistes d'atterrissage illégales et voler dans des conditions périlleuses. Les pilotes militaires ont l'expérience de ce genre de situations et sont prêts à prendre des risques. Il existe une vingtaine de compagnies de ce genre au Congo. Certaines ne possèdent qu'un seul avion. Cette industrie aérienne emploie de nombreux Sud-Africains et Européens de l'Est. Cela nous amène à parler des réseaux de contrebande. Qui finance ces opérations ? Le problème pourrait être partiellement résolu si les lettres de crédit devenaient le moyen de paiement privilégié du commerce des diamants, mais, en Afrique, les devises étrangères sont très importantes. La préférence est donnée aux transactions qui font rentrer de l'argent liquide à la banque centrale. Dans certains pays, lors de transactions portant sur des diamants, il s'agit même d'une exigence. Il y a donc en effet des personnes qui vont acheter des diamants avec des valises pleines de dollars. Dans ces cas, la traçabilité est impossible. Le paiement en liquide concerne précisément la partie du commerce qui nous intéresse aujourd'hui. L'alternative consiste à imposer les lettres de crédit ou à pousser les pays africains à utiliser ce système. La contrebande leur fait en effet du tort. Ce système pourrait permettre d'assainir le marché, mais seuls quelques négociants en diamants pourraient subsister. L'industrie est plus à même de juger des avantages et des inconvénients de ce système. Un nombre réduit de négociants est de toute façon plus facile à contrôler. Certaines ONG souhaitaient n'autoriser, par exemple, que la De Beers. Il n'y aurait alors qu'un seul organisme à contrôler et tout serait centralisé. Cette solution présente des avantages et des inconvénients. La réponse d'Anvers à la proposition de garder la De Beers comme seul opérateur est prévisible. Les négociants sérieux soutiennent la solution de la lettre de crédit. Sa traçabilité est possible et il s'agit d'un document qui peut être présenté lors des différentes étapes des transactions. Bien qu'elle ait instauré ce système voici moins de huit mois, la Sierra Leone autorise à nouveau le paiement en liquide. Certains Libanais ont déjà réussi à obtenir des dérogations. Ce n'est donc pas aussi simple. M. Paul Wille (VLD). - C'est justement notre mission de tenter d'organiser un peu ce marché. Il en va de même pour les contrats d'exploitation. Les activités d'exploitation existantes devraient bénéficier d'une certaine publicité et une fiscalité, semblable à la taxe Tobin, pourrait être introduite. M. J. Peleman. - Je vais expliquer ce que je veux dire lorsque je parle d'éventuelles initiatives belges. La grande différence existant entre les importations et les exportations peut être contrôlée, car les chiffres des exportations congolaises sont disponibles. Si l'on constate que le Congo-Brazzaville commence à jouer un rôle important, alors qu'officiellement il ne produit presque rien, il est évident que le commerce passe par ce pays depuis l'introduction de la nouvelle taxe au Congo. Les autorités belges pourraient se rendre sur place et contrôler les factures qui arrivent ici, par exemple en vérifiant si la société mentionnée sur la facture existe réellement. Les Africains affirment qu'ils ne peuvent expliquer les chiffres provenant d'Anvers et qu'il faut tirer les choses au clair en Belgique. Notre pays pourrait envoyer sur place une délégation des Affaires économiques afin de contrôler toutes les factures avec l'expert diamantaire et le contrôleur des exportations. Ensemble, ils peuvent par exemple vérifier si les volumes des diamants déclarés et des stocks correspondent aux données des exportations et si le négociant s'est effectivement rendu à l'étranger. Nous en revenons donc au problème de la traçabilité. Nous devons prendre nous-mêmes l'initiative, car de nombreux pays africains n'ont même pas les moyens d'envoyer quelqu'un en Belgique afin de procéder aux vérifications. Nous, nous disposons de ces moyens. Cela ne doit pas être tellement cher : nous pourrions nous limiter à des coups de sonde. Cela aurait tout d'abord un effet dissuasif. Si l'on a rassemblé un certain nombre de preuves sur un négociant, on peut faire interroger celui-ci par la Justice. Ensuite, on fait comprendre au milieu du diamant que l'on prend les choses au sérieux. On fait savoir, dans le pays d'origine, que la contrebande est de moins en moins tolérée en Belgique et que les autorités de ce pays feraient bien de s'attaquer elles aussi à la corruption. Nous disposons d'attachés militaires et d'ambassades dans de nombreuses zones de conflits concernées. Il n'est pas nécessaire d'organiser des visites d'État officielles. Il suffit d'envoyer dans le pays d'origine une équipe des Affaires économiques et quelques fonctionnaires des douanes afin qu'ils puissent comparer les statistiques. Demandez-leur d'examiner les chiffres des quinze plus gros exportateurs de diamants. Je pense que cela pourrait donner assez rapidement des résultats et que cela ferait de toute façon prendre conscience du problème. Nous avons bien plus besoin de créativité que de grandes initiatives législatives qui ne feraient que placer la Belgique à contre-courant de l'Europe et de l'OMC et pousseraient les marchés à déménager vers d'autres centres commerciaux. Je pense que les milieux diamantaires eux-mêmes seraient heureux de voir disparaître quelques pommes pourries sans devoir pour autant briser l'omerta. Je voudrais encore parler du commerce artisanal et de l'importance de l'économie informelle dans le secteur du diamant. Actuellement, au Congo, 3 à 4 millions de personnes - principalement des enfants - creusent le sol à la recherche de diamants. Il est possible que je sous-estime ce nombre, car les très mauvaises conditions économiques poussent peut-être beaucoup plus de gens à travailler dans les mines de diamant. Les garimpeiros du nord de l'Angola sont également congolais. Des millions de personnes vivent donc du diamant dans l'espoir de trouver tôt ou tard une grosse pierre. Le travail des enfants constitue un problème très grave dans ce secteur mais, en même temps, il s'agit d'un pilier de l'économie de survie. Avant de décréter un embargo sur le diamant congolais, il faut bien examiner les conséquences négatives qu'il pourrait avoir pour la population. En outre, les embargos attirent comme un aimant les spécialistes sachant les contourner et ils entraînent une forte hausse des prix. Les armes deviennent plus chères et la livraison dans les régions sous embargo engendre un profit plus importants que lorsqu'il s'agit de fournir des armes légales. Les embargos peuvent toucher des millions de personnes, mais non les grands trafiquants car ils possèdent leurs propres réseaux et itinéraires clandestins. Je ne suis donc pas tellement partisan des embargos. Nous ne devons pas davantage oublier que le diamant et le coltan sont des moyens de subsistance, y compris pour la population locale. Dans l'Est du Congo, les mineurs artisanaux permettent de déployer une énorme activité, ce qui a par contre pour inconvénient de maintenir une certaine forme d'esclavage. Certains mineurs sont tout simplement réduits en esclavage et gardent très peu du produit de leur travail. Il s'agit en effet en grande partie d'une économie d'occupation. Nous devons à chaque fois tenir compte de l'économie informelle qui est importante pour la survie de la population, mais elle constitue aussi le terreau d'une criminalisation de l'économie à un niveau plus élevé. GR 5 - Vendredi 14 décembre 2001 Audition de M. Stefaan Marysse, professeur (UA), et de Mme Catherine André, chercheur (UA et UCL) (Présidence de M. André Geens) M. Stefaan Marysse. - Mme André et moi-même allons évoquer le développement économique et le pillage de la région des Grands Lacs. Je commencerai par le développement du Congo tandis que Mme André s'intéressera au Rwanda et au Burundi. Je parlerai ensuite de la définition du pillage, qui diffère de celle des Nations Unies. Le terme « pillage » est difficile à définir. M. le président. - Cette commission n'entend pas faire de distinction entre pillage légal et illégal des matières premières. Les deux peuvent, en effet, contribuer au financement de la guerre. La commission doit encore déterminer ce qu'elle entend par pillage mais pour moi, il est clair que le pillage peut être aussi être le fait d'un gouvernement « légal ». Le produit des matières premières doit profiter à la population. Qu'il profite aux dirigeants ou finance la guerre est pour nous tout aussi grave. M. Stefaan Marysse. - Le rapport des Nations Unies est remarquable sur certains points, mais la définition qu'il donne du pillage est problématique et j'y reviendrai. Mme André va faire le lien entre le pillage et le financement de la guerre au Rwanda et en Ouganda. Je parlerai ensuite du financement de la guerre au Congo. En effet, le pillage est pratiqué non seulement par les rebelles et les pays qui envahissent le Congo, mais on se demande aussi comment le gouvernement finance la guerre. Sur ce plan, il y a un monde de différence entre Kabila senior et Kabila junior. Enfin, Mme André parlera de la politique des « deux poids, deux mesures » observée dans l'aide au développement de la région. Par sa présence dans des institutions internationales, la Belgique pourrait jouer un rôle important dans ce domaine. Premier point. Evolution du développement au Congo. Je vais évoquer le développement du Congo entre 1975 et 2000. Le pillage ne date pas d'hier, mais la guerre change la situation et le pillage est favorisé par l'effondrement de l'État et l'influence du complexe militaro-commercial. Il y a à mon sens deux facteurs essentiels. Si nous examinons l'économie formelle, nous voyons que le PNB a été réduit à un quart de ce qu'il était il y a 25 ans. Tout le monde se focalise sur ce point. Le Congo est en queue de peloton mais on néglige un phénomène essentiel, à savoir l'expansion considérable de l'économie informelle qui compense l'effondrement de l'économie formelle. La population de Kinshasa a doublé en vingt ans. De 250.000 habitants du temps de Leopold III, elle en compte aujourd'hui 6 millions. Les gens ne vivent peut-être pas confortablement mais ils ont de quoi manger et ont des moyens de transport. L'économie informelle est une forme de stratégie anticrise de la population. Elle comporte toutes sortes d'activités mais est basée en premier lieu sur la petite production marchande : des artisans produisent des biens et des services adaptés au pouvoir d'achat de la population. On n'en tient pas assez compte. Nous trouvons ensuite les activités de survie : en visitant un marché congolais, on est frappé par la diminution, d'année en année, des quantités de nourriture de base vendues sur les marchés. C'est le critère le plus parlant pour mesurer la pauvreté. Les tas de manioc se réduisent de plus en plus. Enfin, il y a le capitalisme sauvage, essentiellement l'exportation frauduleuse de toutes sortes de produits. Pour moi, les exportations ne sont pas nécessairement du pillage. En 2000, le revenu moyen annuel par habitant de l'Afrique subsaharienne atteignait 321$US. Même le revenu des pays les plus endettés de cette région est trois fois supérieur à celui du Congo, qui n'est que de 85$US. Ces chiffres, fournis pas la Banque mondiale, négligent certains aspects ; ils montrent que le revenu actuel du Congo est égal à la moitié de ce qu'il serait s'il n'y avait pas de guerre. Depuis le vide politique apparu après la chute du mur de Berlin et le désintérêt subséquent de l'Occident pour l'Afrique, le taux de croissance de l'économie congolaise a décru de manière spectaculaire. (L'orateur projette le transparent « Taux de croissance cumulative du PIB en RDC », voir annexe n° ...) Au cours des dix dernières années, l'économie formelle s'est effondrée et ne représente plus que 30% de ce qu'elle était à l'époque. À l'aide de quelques chiffres, je vais démontrer le lien entre la corruption, la fraude, et l'effondrement de l'État (L'orateur se réfère à nouveau au transparent « Tableau 5 : l'implosion de l'économie formelle et de l'État » voir annexe n°...) En vingt ans, la population a doublé. Le PNB n'est plus que de 30% de ce qu'il était il y a vingt ans. Les revenus de l'État atteignent 223 millions de dollars, y compris la contribution des pétroliers, de la Gécamines et de la MIBA. Les revenus ordinaires du Congo, un territoire qui s'étendrait de Paris à Moscou, ne sont que 100 millions de dollars. Le budget du Congo représente exactement un dixième de celui d'Anvers. Vous comprendrez que dans de telles conditions, les gens tentent de survivre par tous les moyens. À Kinshasa, un professeur d'université gagne environ 2000 francs par mois. L'effondrement de l'État s'est encore aggravé dans les années 80 à la suite des programmes d'adaptation structurelle décidés par la Banque mondiale et le FMI. L'impact négatif de ces institutions sur l'économie congolaise n'est cependant pas mesurable. La question qui se pose est de savoir comment reconstruire le Congo sans accroître à nouveau la corruption. Les exportations représentent à peine un tiers de ce qu'elles étaient il y a vingt ans, tandis que les importations sont restées à un niveau identique. En guise de boutade, disons que le Congo n'est pas surexploité mais sous-exploité. La production du cuivre, essentielle pour le Congo, n'est plus que de 10% de ce qu'elle était il y a vingt ans. Et il ne faut pas croire que les exportations ne profitent qu'aux grandes sociétés. La production intérieure a énormément souffert de la crise. La production de ciment est réduite à un tiers de ce qu'elle était il y a vingt ans alors que le Congo pourrait en utiliser de grandes quantités. La consommation de ciment est un indicateur de la santé de l'économie. Il est faux de prétendre que l'état de l'économie informelle a causé le déclin de l'économie formelle Les exportations de diamant - 60% de l'ensemble des exportations du Congo - sont les seules à progresser. Et il s'agit ici de la partie occidentale de ce pays. Je reviendrai tout à l'heure sur la balance des paiements et les exportations frauduleuses. Mme Catherine André. - Mon intervention portera donc sur le contexte macroéconomique qui caractérise le Rwanda et le Burundi. Je commencerai par le Rwanda. Comme vous pouvez le voir sur le graphique, l'économie rwandaise tend à être dominée par le secteur tertiaire, pour 38 à 40% du PIB, bien que l'agriculture reste fortement dominante, participant à raison d'environ 38% du PIB. Il faut savoir qu'au Rwanda, tout comme au Burundi, 90% de la population vit de l'agriculture. Comme vous pouvez le constater, cette économie est en plein déclin depuis la moitié des années 80. La production agricole baisse et l'économie subit les effets pervers de la forte diminution des produits exportés par le Rwanda, à savoir le café et le thé. Le déclin est donc partiellement dû à des causes structurelles, mais le Rwanda a également subi de plein fouet les effets de la guerre, de l'instabilité et de la perte de confiance en l'économie. Le Rwanda a subi plusieurs chocs économiques extrêmement importants. En 1993, tout d'abord, à la suite du déplacement d'un huitième de la population, c'est-à-dire un million d'habitants. En 1994, ensuite, lors du génocide, qui a entraîné la mort d'un million deux cent mille personnes, le déplacement de la moitié de la population et le retour de huit cent mille anciens réfugiés qui ont remplacé l'élite politico-marchande et qui se sont principalement installés dans les villes. La société rwandaise, déjà en déstructuration vers la fin des années 80 en raison des tensions socioéconomiques résultant de la raréfaction des terres et du peu d'alternatives économiques, a également subi un choc social très important lors du génocide. Le remplacement de l'élite politico-marchande et le génocide ont provoqué la rupture des réseaux de confiance, des réseaux d'assurance mutuelle, des réseaux commerciaux, des réseaux de clientélisme entre l'élite, l'État et la paysannerie. Face à ces chocs, le Rwanda réagit, en 1994, en dévaluant très fortement sa monnaie, ainsi qu'en atteste le graphique. Les bailleurs de fonds ouvrent des lignes de crédit exceptionnelles, accordant des dons extrêmement importants au Rwanda. À la suite du génocide et en raison de la nature et de l'ampleur des chocs qu'il a subis, le Rwanda a été considéré comme special case. Il jouit, à ce titre, d'aides quasi inconditionnelles, comme nous le verrons plus tard. Il a également été accepté très rapidement dans le processus de six années qui doivent aboutir à une remise de 80% de sa dette. Il a dès lors été pris en charge par le FMI, et mis sous programme d'ajustement structurel, dont la condition nécessaire à sa réussite est la stabilité de l'économie. La reconstruction, la réhabilitation et les mesures de réformes structurelles menées ont pour objectif d'amener le pays à un développement endogène, à une relance durable à partir du développement du secteur privé. Il faut cependant bien comprendre que les effets de ces mesures de relance paraissent globalement se faire attendre, d'une part, parce que l'économie est structurellement faible et, d'autre part, parce qu'elle reste marquée par l'insécurité et la guerre, qui limitent les effets des mesures économiques menées. En réalité, malgré une reprise relativement rapide des productions intérieures, la reprise effective des différents secteurs reste faible et, en tout cas, inférieure au niveau des années 90. L'agriculture doit sa croissance, d'une part, à la reprise des activités agricoles dans le pays, à la suite, notamment, du retour des réfugiés et, d'autre part, à la mise en valeur, par des pasteurs, de nouvelles terres situées dans le nord-est. La pauvreté touche fortement le secteur agricole, gravement handicapé par une productivité extrêmement faible, due à la malnutrition, à la féminisation de la main-d'oeuvre, à des conflits fonciers et à une décapitalisation grave des ménages. Le secteur des manufactures ne reprend pas, et subit la concurrence en provenance de l'Ouganda et de l'Afrique du Sud. Ce secteur dépend fortement des importations en matières premières. Il subit la hausse du coût, en monnaie locale, des matières premières importées, et cela, à la suite des dépréciations. Il doit, en outre, faire face à un marché extrêmement étroit. Le secteur de la construction et des travaux publics doit sa relance à l'aide à la reconstruction, mais les effets multiplicateurs de la croissance de ce secteur restent circonscrits aux milieux urbains et ne s'exercent pas sur l'ensemble de l'économie, comme l'attendait le FMI. Le secteur des services a, quant à lui, repris rapidement. La relance de l'économie rwandaise provient effectivement de cette reprise. On ne constate pas, depuis 1995, de reprise de l'investissement intérieur. Dans un contexte instable, les perspectives à moyen et à long termes sont limitées. On ne peut donc pas dire qu'il y ait de réelle relance du secteur privé, destiné à être le moteur du développement économique du Rwanda. On constate, au contraire, chaque année, une fuite de capitaux vers l'extérieur et des investissements minimaux dans les activités rentables à très court terme, qui n'ont bien sûr pas d'effet multiplicateur sur l'ensemble des secteurs économiques. La reprise intérieure reste donc contrainte dans un contexte de guerre et d'insécurité. Le taux d'inflation est maîtrisé principalement grâce à l'aide internationale. La monnaie continue à se déprécier, à la suite, notamment, de la baisse des revenus de l'économie, de la diminution de l'offre intérieure, des déséquilibres constants entre les ressources et les utilisations. L'aide comble les déficits et tente d'assurer l'équilibre - intérieur comme extérieur - monétaire. Mais, globalement, comme le montre la dépréciation du franc rwandais, le Rwanda s'appauvrit sur le plan international. La population subit lourdement les conséquences de cette situation. Les facteurs alimentant le cercle vicieux de la paupérisation sont principalement l'insécurité, les mouvements de population, l'insuffisance des dépenses budgétaires allouées au secteur social et la réorientation de l'aide structurelle vers de l'aide d'urgence. La crise humanitaire est extrêmement grave au Rwanda, avec une augmentation forte de la proportion de la population située en deçà du seuil de pauvreté : de 40% en 1985, on est passé à 80% en 1997. Selon le dernier recensement, publié en novembre de cette année, la proportion avoisinerait les 60%. Les revenus sont passés de 260 dollars par habitant en 1988 à 192 en 2000, et le taux de mortalité a quasiment doublé, passant de 128 pour 1.000 en 1980, à 208 pour 1.000 à la fin des années 90. Les effets multiplicateurs de la reconstruction financée par l'aide sont faibles et circonscrits aux centres urbains. On observe, pour cette raison, une dualisation croissante de la société selon l'axe ville-campagne, les villes ayant principalement bénéficié de l'aide à la reconstruction et des travaux publics. La politique du FMI et de la Banque mondiale vise surtout à soutenir et à stabiliser l'économie rwandaise, une économie qui ne se stabilise que grâce à l'aide. L'économie burundaise est dominée par l'agriculture qui participe à 50 % du PIB et qui assure les moyens de subsistance à 90 % de la population, comme au Rwanda. Le Burundi est plus pauvre que le Rwanda, mais les disparités exprimées en termes de revenus sont moins grandes qu'au Rwanda; les secteurs secondaires et tertiaires participent respectivement à 19 et à 31 % du PIB. L'économie est plus pauvre mais légèrement plus diversifiée; elle a donc plus de potentialités qu'au Rwanda. L'économie est également marquée par des années de guerre et d'insécurité politico-militaire ainsi que par le déplacement de 14 % de la population; ce sont les facteurs prépondérants du déclin économique burundais. Les mesures d'embargo imposées en juillet 1996 par les pays voisins à la suite du coup d'État du président Buyoya a eu pour effet d'accroître le déclin économique global. Le secteur agricole a été fortement touché en 1993 et en 1994; il a réagi rapidement à l'amélioration des conditions de sécurité en 1998. La reprise de l'économie burundaise provient de l'agriculture, mais celle-ci stagne en 1999 et 2000. Pour ce qui est des secteurs secondaires et tertiaires, ceux-ci subissent un premier déclin à partir de 1993 et un second choc lors de l'imposition de l'embargo. La communauté internationale réagit face à l'instabilité en réduisant son aide à la balance des paiements. Malgré l'ouverture politique en 1992 et 1993, l'extérieur a fortement diminué son aide à partir de 1993 et a réorienté le reste de son aide vers de l'aide d'urgence. Le gouvernement réoriente alors ses maigres ressources budgétaires vers des dépenses militaires. Les besoins financiers pour la guerre sont comblés par la réorientation des maigres recettes vers les dépenses militaires puis par l'emprunt extérieur, entre 1994 et 1996, et ensuite, depuis la coupure des fonds extérieurs, par l'emprunt intérieur alimentant l'inflation. Pour faire face à ses besoins, l'État ponctionne également des rentes importantes sur les cultures d'exportation que sont le thé et le café. La levée de l'embargo a permis au Burundi de réimporter et de rapatrier des capitaux, mais il reste isolé par la communauté internationale. Il continue d'accumuler des arriérés au niveau extérieur et garde une balance extérieure extrêmement déficitaire. La dépréciation de la monnaie burundaise s'élève à 80 % depuis 1993 et témoigne de l'appauvrissement du Burundi sur le plan international. Le nombre de personnes situées en deçà du seuil de pauvreté a augmenté et la paupérisation s'est aggravée : 60 % de la population est concernée. En 1993, la pauvreté a augmenté de 80 % en milieu rural et de 50 % dans les villes. A la suite du déplacement de la population et à l'insécurité généralisée, le taux de scolarisation primaire est passé de 70 % à 44 % de 1993 à la fin des années 90. Le taux de mortalité est passé de 110 pour mille à 136 pour mille au cours de la même période. Un enfant sur cinq souffre de malnutrition chronique. Cette pauvreté croissante reflète la diminution des revenus réels dans toutes les tranches de la population et tous les secteurs de l'économie, bien que certaines tranches de la population aient profité de la guerre et de l'embargo. Cette pauvreté reflète également l'exclusion croissante de la population aux soins de santé et à l'éducation, ainsi que la réorientation des moyens budgétaires vers les dépenses militaires au détriment des dépenses sociales et d'investissement. Cette pauvreté témoigne aussi du retrait de l'aide qui subventionnait en partie ce secteur. En conclusion, nous pouvons dire que les économies respectives du Rwanda et du Burundi sont structurellement fragilisées depuis le début des années 80, et qu'elles ont subi de plein fouet les effets de l'insécurité et de la guerre. D'un côté, le Rwanda a reçu une aide massive à la suite du génocide et a été soutenu de manière importante par la communauté internationale, ce qui lui a permis d'assurer une certaine stabilité économique. D'un autre côté, le Burundi est isolé de la communauté internationale. Nous reviendrons plus tard sur les politiques menées. M. Stefaan Marysse. - Les économies du Congo, du Rwanda et du Burundi présentent la même tendance à la marginalisation et la paupérisation. J'en viens au troisième point, le pillage et son lien avec la guerre. Situons d'abord le contexte général. En 1989, un vide géopolitique s'est créé dans toute l'Afrique à cause du net ralentissement de l'aide au développement. Ce phénomène est très perceptible au Congo, un peu moins au Rwanda après 1995. D'autre part, nous assistons à une marginalisation économique de l'Afrique. Un exemple : l'ensemble des pays de l'Afrique subsaharienne exportent en valeur autant que Singapour qui ne compte que 3 millions d'habitants. En Afrique, il n'y a donc pas trop mais trop peu de globalisation. Ces deux éléments font que les élites africaines disposent d'une autonomie nettement plus importante, mais sont confrontées à des caisses de l'État vides. Ce double mouvement a entraîné ce que les politologues appellent la « criminalisation de l'État ». Moins celui-ci est présent, plus ce phénomène est important. Plus le sous-sol est riche, plus la classe politique, militaire et commerciale va chercher à renforcer sa position. C'est dans ce contexte que j'entends situer le pillage. Attention, un tel phénomène n'est pas inévitable. Certains pays de l'Afrique subsaharienne se portent mieux que les tigres du Sud-est asiatique tout en étant des démocraties. Les économies du Botswana et de l'île Maurice croissent plus rapidement que celles de l'Asie du Sud-est. L'île Maurice présente une économie diversifiée et exporte en majorité des produits industriels. Plus je voyage en Afrique, plus je m'étonne d'ailleurs des différences entre pays. Il est cependant évident que des caisses de l'État vides combinées à un vide politique augmentent le risque de voir la criminalisation servir de stratégie aux élites africaines. La guerre est un des moyens de renforcer leur autonomie. C'est dans ce contexte de criminalisation qu'il faut situer le pillage. La définition proposée par le rapport des Nations Unies pose un problème. Pour le Congo, on peut se demander qui représente l'autorité légitime. C'est tout le débat à propos des « rebelles » et du gouvernement de Kinshasa. Chacun conteste la légitimité de l'autre, bien que le nouveau président dispose d'une légitimité informelle dans l'ouest du pays, ce qui n'est pas vraiment le cas pour les occupants et les « rebelles » de l'est du pays. Y a-t-il dès lors une meilleure définition du pillage ? En tant qu'économiste, je parle de pillage lorsqu'une partie de la valeur ajoutée quitte le pays sans être compensée par des importations équivalentes. Des matières premières comme le diamant peuvent être exportées illégalement, mais si les dollars qu'elles procurent sont réinvestis dans le pays, il ne s'agit pas selon moi d'un pillage. La différence est importante. C'est la seule manière de comprendre le lien avec le financement de la guerre. On peut seulement parler de pillage lorsque des étrangers ou les résidents d'un pays placent une partie de la valeur des exportations sur un compte secret ou l'investissent dans des activités qui ne profitent pas au pays. Le Congo a ainsi été pillé sous Léopold II, beaucoup moins de 1908 à 1960 et à nouveau sous le président Mobutu, surtout après 1973. Le pillage s'est intensifié à la suite de l'affaiblissement de l'État. Les statistiques du Conseil supérieur du diamant montrent que le pillage n'a pas débuté avec la guerre. (L'orateur se réfère au graphique « Exportations de diamants de quelques pays africains vers la Belgique (1980-1995) » voir annexe n°....) Les exportations connues de diamants congolais arrivant à Anvers se montent à environ 700 millions de dollars, alors que le chiffre officiel congolais est de 200 à 300 millions. Dans les années 90, les exportations frauduleuses représentaient de deux à trois fois les exportations officielles. Selon les statistiques, les exportations de diamants en provenance du Congo-Brazzaville atteindraient 500 millions alors que ce pays ne produit pratiquement pas de diamants. Les exportations frauduleuses totales représentent six fois le budget total du Congo, ce qui s'explique évidemment par la faiblesse de l'État. En effet, le Botswana vend également des diamants, mais les revenus de cette activité, placés à l'étranger, lui permettent de financer l'ensemble des dépenses publiques de santé et d'enseignement. Les exportations frauduleuses constituent-elles un pillage ? Cela dépend de l'importance de la valeur retournant l'une ou l'autre manière au Congo. Je fais une nette différence entre l'est et l'ouest du pays. Pour moi, le pillage concerne la part de la valeur ajoutée qui sort du pays sans contre-prestation. Dans la région de Mbuji Mayi, 80% de la valeur totale des exportations sont, d'une manière ou d'une autre, réinjectés dans le circuit. Le pillage n'y concerne que 20% des exportations frauduleuses. À l'est du pays, la valeur ajoutée qui sort du pays représente, selon nos données, 50% de la valeur totale du coltan. Ceci s'explique par deux phénomènes. D'une part, l'occupation militaire est beaucoup plus répressive à l'est. D'autre part, de nouveaux produits sont exportés. Depuis 1999, on assiste à une hausse des prix du coltan, lequel est employé entre autres dans les téléphones mobiles. Le coltan ne fait pas l'objet d'une cotation publique et la population locale n'a donc pas conscience de sa valeur. Il existe cependant un bureau international à Bruxelles. Cette commission devrait demander des informations sur les prix. En tout cas, moi je ne les obtient pas. Je serais déjà heureux de disposer des prix des trois dernières années. Nous pourrions ainsi calculer la valeur ajoutée réelle des exportations de coltan. Le professeur Reyntjens et moi-même estimons que la valeur du pillage consécutif à la guerre représente entre 5 et 5,3% du PNB du Congo. Le diamant concerné est surtout celui de Kinsangani, destiné à la joaillerie, et qui a une valeur plus grande que le diamant de la région de Mbuji Mayi. Il représente près de 10% de la production totale de diamants du Congo. Pour 1999 et 2000, c'est surtout le coltan qui est important. Une grande partie de la valeur ajoutée quitte le pays. La destruction de la forêt équatoriale dans l'est du Congo est également une catastrophe. Chaque jour, des chargements de bois passent la frontière vers l'Ouganda. Mme André va maintenant vous expliquer ce que représente ce pillage pour l'économie congolaise et ougandaise. Je parlerai ensuite de l'importance du régime Kabila pour les alliés. Mme Catherine André. - Le graphique que vous avez sous les yeux indique les valeurs ajoutées pour le diamant, l'or, le coltan ou le bois, qui reviennent en 1999 et en 2000, soit au Rwanda soit à l'Ouganda. Comme l'a expliqué le professeur Marysse, on a essayé de mesurer le pillage organisé par le Rwanda et par l'Ouganda, en essayant d'évaluer la partie des valeurs ajoutées des réexportations des différents produits miniers et du bois en provenance du Congo. Ces produits ont été réexportés par le Rwanda et par l'Ouganda. Pour chacun, j'ai coché les exportations officielles, telles qu'elles apparaissent notamment dans les rapports du FMI ou des Nations Unies. Nous avons calculé la valeur des réexportations pour chaque produit et la part de la valeur ajoutée revenant au Rwanda et à l'Ouganda. Comme le montre le tableau, pour le Rwanda, c'est le coltan qui donne au pillage toute son ampleur. Pour le Rwanda, la réexportation des produits pillés s'élève à 8,4% en 1999 et à 7,1% en 2000. C'est énorme pour une économie aussi faible que celle de ce pays. Cette réexportation lui permet de doubler ses dépenses militaires officielles. Elle représente la quasi-totalité de l'aide en 2000 et les deux tiers en 1999. Pour l'Ouganda, la réexportation des produits du Congo représente nettement moins en termes économiques, d'une part, parce que le total des valeurs ajoutées est relativement moins élevé que pour le Rwanda et, d'autre part, parce que l'économie ougandaise est plus forte. Sur ce graphique, apparaissent également - le professeur Marysse en a parlé - des évaluations des pertes subies par le Congo, à savoir 5% du PIB en 1999 et en 2000. Pour le calcul des valeurs ajoutées, nous nous sommes d'abord basés sur plusieurs types d'informations concernant la production des pays concernés. Ensuite, nous avons essayé de dégager la part de la valeur ajoutée qui restait au Congo. Pour le diamant et l'or, globalement, on estime cette part à 80% , le solde de 20% revenant au Rwanda et à l'Ouganda, tandis que pour le coltan, elle n'est que de 25%, à peine. Comme l'a dit le professeur Marysse, pour le diamant et pour l'or, la valeur ajoutée qui reste au Congo est plus importante car les petits exploitants et les négociants sont particulièrement bien au courant des prix. Pour le coltan, le Rwanda a bénéficié d'un important effet « marché » et surtout, « hausse de prix » . J'en viens aux différences entre les réseaux ougandais et rwandais. En matière d'or, de diamant et de coltan, le Rwanda exerce un plus grand contrôle militaire de l'ensemble des filières. L'Ouganda se charge plutôt de faciliter l'exploitation et le transport en se reposant sur des réseaux locaux. Si le pillage économique du Congo existait avant la guerre, la manière dont il est réalisé a changé avec la guerre : il était libre pour les Congolais, depuis longtemps, et il se réalise à présent davantage sous encadrement militaire et pour le compte de deux armées. Que permet le contrôle militaire de ces filières ? Il offre une rente maximale aux armées qui agissent sur le marché local en tant que monopoleur. Comme nous l'avons vu, le total des valeurs ajoutées des minerais réexportés est relativement plus important pour le Rwanda que pour l'Ouganda. Dans le cas du Rwanda, les bénéfices du pillage sont extrabudgétaires : ils n'apparaissent dans aucun compte national. Dans l'autre cas, les bénéfices sont en partie officialisés : ils ont notamment participé à la croissance de l'économie ougandaise. Le Rwanda a mis en place un système extrabudgétaire pour financer sa présence au Congo, tandis que l'Ouganda a opéré de manière plus transparente : en officialisant ses réexportations et en percevant des taxes supplémentaires sur les réexportations, l'Ouganda a pu, de fait, augmenter ses recettes budgétaires et, dans la même proportion, ses dépenses militaires. Dans les deux cas, le pillage a permis le financement des dépenses militaires. Du côté rwandais, le pillage profite à un réseau qui autofinance la guerre, du côté ougandais, non seulement à un réseau mais également à l'État. Au vu des bénéfices recueillis par ces deux réseaux, les enjeux économiques de la présence au Congo des deux armées sont importants. Le coût d'un retrait ou de l'application des accords de Lusaka serait plus élevé pour le Rwanda. L'Ouganda repose davantage sur des structures et des réseaux locaux avec lesquels il pourrait poursuivre ses activités commerciales - c'est ce qu'il fait actuellement - même si le monopole et le contrôle militaire qu'il exerce lui assurent des bénéfices plus importants. Pour le Rwanda, par contre, le retrait des troupes et une pacification de la Région signifieraient une perte de contrôle de la réexportation du coltan, en tout cas, de l'exploitation de l'or, minerai qui auparavant était écoulé par le Burundi. En d'autres termes, la poursuite du conflit et l'entretien de la violence permettent de recueillir des bénéfices largement supérieurs à ceux retirés en situation de paix et d'ouverture des marchés à la concurrence. La violence dans la région a un coût pour la population. Au Congo, la dernière enquête fait état de 2,5 millions de morts à la suite du conflit et indique une paupérisation de l'ensemble de la région. MSF va sortir très prochainement un rapport signalant que la situation est extrêmement préoccupante dans les zones de conflit au Congo. Il est tout à fait clair, en ce qui concerne le Rwanda, que les bénéfices du pillage ne sont pas réinvestis dans l'économie rwandaise et qu'ils ne bénéficient donc aucunement à la population. Le pillage a aussi bénéficié à l'Ouganda ; il lui a permis d'augmenter ses dépenses militaires mais, aussi, dans une moindre proportion, ses dépenses de développement et ses dépenses sociales. Le pillage des ressources du Congo existait bien avant le début de la guerre, notamment en ce qui concerne le diamant et l'or. La guerre a provoqué un détournement des bénéfices de ce pillage au profit d'autres acteurs et d'autres réseaux, locaux ou nationaux. En conclusion, la guerre a permis la ponction de bénéfices nettement plus importants. M. Stefaan Marysse. - Le gouvernement officiel a, lui aussi, besoin de capitaux pour financer la guerre. Laurent-Désiré Kabila et son fils Joseph ont pris de mesures fort différentes pour financer la guerre. Il y a 120.000 soldats qui gagnent chacun 100 $ par mois. Comment Kabila les a-t-il financés ? Laurent-Désiré Kabila a d'abord surévalué le franc congolais, opération qui permet d'acheter des dollars contre peu de francs congolais. Un écart très grand se crée alors entre la valeur officielle du franc congolais et sa valeur réelle sur le marché. Les pouvoirs publics tentent de contrôler les agents de change informels sans y parvenir, ce qui donne naissance a un marché noir. Une deuxième mesure consistait à contrôler les exportations frauduleuses de diamants. Les diamants ont alors été vendus à Brazzaville, ce qui a fait perdre à Kabila la moitié de son budget en deux ans. Une troisième tentative - également utilisée par les pays envahisseurs - consiste à instaurer un monopole pour l'achat des diamants. Kabila a accordé le monopole à une firme israélienne. Tous les producteurs étaient obligés de vendre leurs diamants par l'intermédiaire de cette firme. Le seul résultat de cette mesure est que les diamants ont alors quitté le pays en fraude et le marché noir a encore gagné en importance. Kabila a également tenté d'obtenir des prêts auprès de sources très douteuses. Cela frisait la criminalisation de l'État. Une autre pratique consiste à imposer des prix minimaux pour l'essence. Kabila a présenté cette décision comme une mesure sociale. Elle a également donné naissance à un marché noir, l'essence étant acheminée à Brazzaville par les militaires pour y être vendue quatre fois plus cher, ce qui a permis évidemment de financer les militaires du Congo-Kinshasa. Le principal moyen de financer la guerre est de faire tourner la planche à billets, comme Mubutu l'a si souvent fait. Le dollar, qui s'échangeait contre deux francs congolais en 1998, vaut maintenant 350 francs congolais. Kabila fils prend des mesures inspirées d'un marxiste archaïque. Un État faible ne peut contrôler l'économie. Les mesures contre-productives ont été supprimées en mai. Il a pris des mesures qui ont rapidement permis de stabiliser la monnaie, ce qui satisfait la population car rien n'est pire pour elle qu'une hyperinflation. On attend à présent davantage de l'avenir. Une aide structurelle doit conforter les signaux positifs. Il faut continuer à insister pour que les accords de Lusaka soient mis en oeuvre et que le dialogue intercongolais se poursuive. L'État doit être financé avec un contrôle externe strict. On n'observe pratiquement aucun pillage du côté de l'Angola et de la Namibie. L'Angola s'en abstient essentiellement pour des raisons politiques. La lutte contre Savimbi nécessite un régime stable à Kinshasa. Ce sont les soldats angolais qui ont assuré la stabilité lors du décès de Laurent-Désiré Kabila. Le Zimbabwe est comparable à l'Ouganda. La guerre au Congo coûte au Zimbabwe un million de dollars par jour, montant en partie financé par l'inflation qui sévit dans le pays. Qui en profite ? D'un point de vue militaire, Kabila n'aurait jamais pu rester en place sans le Zimbabwe, mais ce dernier est situé sur le front et donc dans les zones d'exploitation du diamant. Il est évident que la population du Zimbabwe en paie le prix. En revanche, un petit groupe de militaires, d'hommes politiques et de commerçants proches du président Mugabe s'enrichissent grâce à la guerre. Ainsi par exemple, le chef d'état-major de l'armée du Zimbabwe au Congo est aussi à la tête de Zimbabwe Defence Industries, une société qui vend du matériel militaire et s'occupe de transport. Il est aussi à la tête de toute une série d'entreprises parapubliques. Gara, le beau-fils de Mugabe, a aussi une sorte de société parapublique et est copropriétaire d'une banque au Zimbabwe. Zimbabwe Defence Industries a conclu durant les premières années des contrats portant sur un montant de 15 à 17 millions de dollars pour la livraison de matériel au Congo. Mme Catherine André. - Je vais terminer en vous présentant la politique « deux poids, deux mesures » de la communauté internationale vis-à-vis des pays de la région, notamment la politique de l'UE, très présente dans cette partie du monde. Dans certains pays de la région, l'aide publique au développement fournie par l'UE a parfois atteint 70% de l'aide totale durant la période 1990-1998. Au niveau évolutif, nous constatons globalement que l'aide structurelle aux pays de la région a fortement baissé. Ainsi, en l'espace de treize ans, l'aide structurelle de l'UE au Burundi a été divisée par huit, l'aide au Rwanda et à l'Ouganda, par deux. Elle a été uniquement partiellement rétablie sous forme d'aide d'urgence à la région des Grands Lacs, qui monopolise entre 30 et 34% de l'aide d'urgence de l'UE. L'évolution détaillée des aides aux différents pays impliqués dans la guerre au Congo se ventile comme suit : le Congo a vu son aide globale au développement baisser à partir de 1990. En 1999, elle n'atteignait même plus le septième du montant de référence, soit celui de 1990, suite au retrait de certaines coopérations bilatérales - celle de la Belgique en premier lieu - et de certaines coopérations multilatérales. Ces retraits étaient avant tout motivés par considérations politiques. Depuis l'arrivée au pouvoir de Joseph Kabila, nous observons des ouvertures et une lente reprise de l'aide structurelle, reprise encore imperceptible sur le graphique que vous avez sous les yeux. Quant au FMI, il conditionne la reprise de ses relations avec le Congo à des critères d'ordre économique et financier, en priorité au paiement d'arriérés et à la remise en ordre des comptes. Le Burundi a bénéficié d'une légère aide au développement sous le gouvernement de Ndadaye, aide quelque peu augmentée lors de l'ouverture démocratique, avant de baisser à nouveau en 1998 à la suite du coup d'état de Buyoya. La condamnation du putsch par les pays voisins a été suivie par la communauté internationale, en particulier par l'UE. En 1998, l'aide publique au développement n'atteignait plus que le quart de son niveau de 1994-1995. L'UE a suspendu cette aide en 1997 pour la reprendre en 1998. Toutefois, les programmes sont globalement restés conditionnés par l'avancée des négociations. Le FMI conditionne la reprise d'un éventuel programme à une certaine stabilisation économique. Comme nous l'avons montré dans plusieurs articles, les critères économiques pour le Burundi sont globalement atteints mais des raisons avant tout politiques justifient le choix actuel du FMI malgré le fait que celui-ci se réfugie derrière des critères largement économiques. En conclusion, dans le cas du Burundi et du Congo, l'aide a été suspendue pour des raisons politiques et reste conditionnée à des avancées démocratique. En outre, le FMI conditionne la reprise de son aide à des critères économiques. Le Rwanda a reçu une légère augmentation de l'aide publique au développement entre 1990 et 1993, suite à l'adoption d'un programme d'ajustement structurel. Ensuite, l'aide publique a doublé en 1994 et 1995 pour répondre au choc économique énorme provoqué par le génocide et la guerre. Mais elle a baissé à partir de 1995 et a atteint, en 1998, la moitié de son niveau de 1995. Le Rwanda est considéré comme un cas très spécial par les institutions d'aides. On lui reconnaît son besoin en aides extérieures, quelle que soit sa situation intérieure. Dès lors, pour les institutions internationales, multilatérales et bilatérales, le Rwanda connaît une situation exceptionnelle qui lui permet de bénéficier d'aides pratiquement inconditionnelles. Cette situation exceptionnelle a été reconnue par l'UE, à partir de 1998. La guerre dans laquelle est impliqué le Rwanda est considérée comme répondant à des objectifs de sécurité intérieure; c'est pourquoi, selon le graphique, que la guerre a peu d'influence sur le niveau d'aides. Même si le Rwanda est encouragé à respecter les accords de paix et à les mettre en oeuvre, même s'il est régulièrement invité par le FMI a réduire ses dépenses militaires et à augmenter ses dépenses sociales, il n'a jamais été réellement sanctionné pour n'avoir pas obtempéré. L'Ouganda est resté, durant la dernière décennie, le dernier pays à drainer plus de fonds dans la région, même si l'aide publique a eu tendance à baisser à partir de 1998. À partir des années 1990, ce pays est considéré comme leader régional, tant d'un point de vue politique qu'économique. En effet, il est le premier pays de la région à avoir été accepté dans le programme de réduction de la dette en 1996. Aussi, l'Ouganda a-t-il déjà bénéficié de deux tranches de remise de la dette. Malgré une militarisation croissante, malgré la généralisation de la corruption, le FMI lui accorde un soutien quasi inconditionnel. L'Ouganda est néanmoins vivement invité à réduire ses dépenses militaires. En effet, les institutions multilatérales se disent souvent préoccupées par son implication dans la guerre au Congo. Mais, malgré les menaces des institutions multilatérales, aucune sanction n'a été prise en raison de cette implication. Quant à l'Angola, il voit son aide publique augmenter. Ce pays est sous plan d'ajustement structurel depuis 1996 et bénéficie aussi d'un soutien quasi inconditionnel. Dès lors, dans les cas du Rwanda, de l'Ouganda et de l'Angola, les volumes d'aides sont drainés par des programmes de réformes économiques menées par le FMI. L'attitude des institutions multilatérales est qualifiée de positive. Ces pays sont effectivement sous programme d'ajustement structurel et sont considérés comme étant en situation faiblement conflictuelle et les aides sont appelées à contribuer à la construction d'un cadre propice à une certaine stabilité économique et au développement, à l'émergence d'un État de droit et à des avancées démocratiques. L'aide est donc considérée comme une précondition à l'ouverture démocratique et à la stabilité économique. Le Zimbabwe a bénéficié d'une aide doublée en 1992, aide ayant néanmoins baissé au cours des années ultérieures. Le Zimbabwe vit, depuis deux ans, de graves problèmes économiques. Le programme d'ajustement structurel a été levé en 1998 du fait de l'implication du Zimbabwe dans la guerre au Congo, notamment, quoique ce ne fût pas la raison principale. Les programmes d'ajustement et les appuis financiers ont été gelés, d'une part, pour cause d'instabilité macroéconomique et, d'autre part, pour son implication dans la guerre au Congo. Comment résumer les positions de l'UE, du FMI et des autres institutions multilatérales ? L'UE se tient à une politique d'aides au cas par cas, de manière différenciée. Elle exige le respect des Droits de l'homme, de l'État de droit, des principes démocratiques et de bonne gestion publique, sous peine de suspension des aides. Nous venons de le constater, cette politique est appliquée dans le cas du Congo et du Burundi où des conditions politiques sont mises à l'octroi des aides, notamment la poursuite du dialogue intercongolais, les ouvertures démocratique ou les avancées des négociations de paix au Burundi. Par contre dans le cas de l'Angola, du Rwanda et de l'Ouganda, les aides sont considérées comme indispensables pour encourager et favoriser les ouvertures démocratiques et le développement. L'UE y applique principalement une politique dite de sélectivité positive. Le FMI impose des conditions à certains pays comme le respect d'un pourcentage maximum de dépenses militaires, un montant maximum de réserves monétaires, un taux d'investissement, etc. Bref, le FMI exige une certaine stabilité économique. Au yeux de l'UE, le FMI est un garant de la bonne gestion des volumes d'aides offerts par les institutions multilatérales. Le FMI, en soutenant un pays plutôt qu'un autre, applique, lui aussi, dans cette région, la politique de « deux poids, deux mesures ». Comme nous l'avons vu, la guerre au Congo n'a impliqué ni la suspension des aides ni celle des programmes du FMI, sauf pour le Zimbabwe dont l'implication dans la guerre a été utilisée comme argument supplémentaire. Les aides et les montants ont été attribués et les programmes n'ont pas été modifiés. La politique menée au cas par cas aboutit à considérer la guerre comme un élément extérieur mais légitime si elle répond à la recherche d'une plus grande sécurité pour certains pays. Cependant, il est clair que les objectifs sécuritaires camouflent parfois des objectifs économiques. Quels sont les effets pervers de cette politique de « deux poids, deux mesures » ? D'une part, une politique d'aides quasi inconditionnelle pour le Rwanda, l'Angola, l'Ouganda et, d'autre part, une politique conditionnelle pour le Congo, le Burundi et le Zimbabwe. Cette prise de position représente un soutien puissant accordé aux pays bénéficiaires des aides dans la région, pays réellement en position de force sur le plan politique et dans les négociations. Au niveau des aides, la balance extérieure du Rwanda est financée pour deux tiers par l'extérieur, celle de l'Ouganda pour un tiers. On constate aussi une croissance des dépenses militaires au niveau budgétaire. Il est clair que le Burundi, le Rwanda et l'Angola donnent effectivement la priorité budgétaire à leur sécurité et à leur défense. Par exemple, pour 1999, on constate que le Burundi consacre 7 % de son PIB aux dépenses militaires et seulement 4,6 % aux dépenses sociales. Le Rwanda consacre l'équivalent de 4 % du PIB à ses dépenses militaires et 4 % aux dépenses sociales. Si l'on compare ces chiffres à ceux de l'Ouganda, on constate l'inverse, l'Ouganda ne consacrant que 2 % de son PIB aux dépenses militaires contre 4,7 % aux dépenses sociales. Par contre, l'Angola affecte quasi 22 % de son PIB aux dépenses militaires contre 4% aux dépenses sociales. Les pays bénéficiaires d'aides profitent des larges possibilités de manoeuvre qu'elles offrent pour mener la guerre tout en réalisant certains objectifs de stabilité économique, notamment dans le cadre des ajustements structurels menés par le FMI ainsi que pour réaliser certaines dépenses sociales, même si elles sont insuffisantes, comme en Angola ou au Rwanda. On constate donc que la guerre génère une pression extrêmement forte sur les dépenses militaires. Dans le cas du Burundi et du Congo qui bénéficient de beaucoup moins d'aides, on constate que la pression sur les dépenses militaires s'exerce au détriment des dépenses sociales ou de développement, au risque d'une paupérisation extrême de la population et d'une déstabilisation très forte sur le plan économique. Pour les pays aidés, les conséquences économiques de la guerre sont importantes parce que les programmes de réforme sont peu efficaces par rapport à l'objectif de base, à savoir sortir ces pays du cercle vicieux de l'endettement en relançant la croissance par des investissements, notamment dans le secteur privé. Les conséquences économiques, à partir du moment où les objectifs visés par ce secteur ne sont pas atteints, engendrent des coûts sociaux d'autant plus importants. Ils se concrétisent, comme nous l'avons entendu au début de l'exposé, par la croissance de la paupérisation, des inégalités et de la dualisation sociale. M. Michiel Maertens (AGALEV). - Le Rwanda reçoit une aide inconditionnelle. Il est considéré comme un cas spécial. Mme André a dit que le Rwanda n'est pas sanctionné. J'aimerais avoir plus d'explications à ce sujet. Les donateurs se rendent-ils compte que leur aide renforce l'économie de guerre de la puissante armée rwandaise et ont-ils conscience de contrecarrer les accords de Lusaka ? Dans quelle mesure ne soutiennent-ils pas ainsi, directement ou indirectement, les mécanismes de pillage ? Je renvoie au lien entre intérêts étrangers, banque mondiale et FMI. Pour ces deux institutions, les intérêts des multinationales entrent incontestablement en ligne de compte. Les orateurs peuvent-ils dévoiler ces liens et donner des noms et des chiffres ? Ces derniers figurent-ils dans l'Annuaire des Grands Lacs ? La poursuite de la guerre rapporte bien davantage que l'application des accords de Lusaka. Est-ce la même chose pour les multinationales ? Je ne pense pas seulement au commerce du diamant mais surtout à celui du coltan. Depuis 1995-1996, l'aide européenne au Rwanda a diminué. Depuis lors, les programmes d'aide internationale se développent de manière considérable. Étant donné que la part européenne dans ces programmes reste la même, cette augmentation de l'aide est en grande partie financée par l'Europe. Il y a donc un détournement hypocrite de l'aide européenne. Notre gouvernement et l'Union européenne ne doivent-ils pas redresser la situation si notre analyse s'avère exacte ? Comment pouvons-nous contrôler l'exportation de diamants frauduleux via Brazzaville vers Anvers ? Dans le rapport de la FAO du printemps 2001, on prévoit d'importer une aide alimentaire d'environ 150.000 tonnes, alors qu'avant la guerre de 1990, on importait 25.000 tonnes. Comment l'expliquer ? Malgré les programmes d'aide agricole, l'agriculture ne se redresse pas au Rwanda. Quelle en est l'explication ? Est-ce dû à une explosion démographique ?
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You plead in your presentation so that we do not take too much account of the international dimension and that we consider the problem rather from the standpoint of Belgium. But if we control too much of the Belgian plan, even just to make us feel good, trade will reorganize a large extent. Is there not a contradiction between your approach to the problem of Belgium, which you insist, and the relativity of the importance of international control, monitoring and statistics?

Mr. Jan Remans (VLD). - Besides the big mining contracts, large quantities of coltan are also extracted using traditional methods. Can people survive without this mining?
If we can win so much money with coltan, in fact the population? It can in fact spend to buy that commodity.

Mr. Michiel Maertens (AGALEV). - In Antwerp, there is a problem but also customs tax. Export figures from Africa and imports in Antwerp does not match.
The proposals of this commission can form the basis of a European and international legislation. It is important that these proposals are well made. Mr. Peleman can perhaps help us.

Mr. J. Peleman. - Transport by road or by river is virtually impossible in the Congo. Local airlines play an important role in the illegal importation of arms and the illegal export of raw materials.
I already mentioned small Congolese airlines. Their operators and owners are often former military pilots. They must use illegal airstrips and fly in dangerous conditions. Military pilots are experienced in these situations and are willing to take risks. There are about twenty companies of its kind in Congo. Some have only one airline. The airline industry employs many South Africans and Eastern Europeans. This brings us to smuggling rings. Who is funding these operations?
The problem could be partially resolved if the letters of credit became the preferred method of payment of the diamond trade, but in Africa, foreign exchange is very important. Preference is given to transactions that are returning cash to the central bank. In some countries, while transactions in diamonds, there is even a requirement. So there are indeed people who will buy diamonds with suitcases full of dollars. In these cases, traceability is impossible. Cash payment for precisely that part of the trade that interests us today.
The alternative is to place the letters of credit or to push African countries to use this system. Smuggling makes them indeed wrong. This system could help stabilize the market, but only a few diamond dealers could survive. The industry is better able to judge the advantages and disadvantages of this system. A small number of traders is anyway easier to control.
Some NGOs wanted to authorize, for example, that De Beers. There would be only one body control and everything would be centralized. This solution has advantages and disadvantages. The response from Antwerp to the proposal to keep the De Beers as a single operator is predictable.
Traders seriously argue the solution of the letter of credit. Traceability is possible and it is a document that can be presented during the various stages of transactions. Although it has introduced this system within the past eight months, Sierra Leone again authorizes payment in cash. Some Lebanese have already managed to obtain exemptions. So it's not that simple.

Paul Wille (VLD). - That is our mission to try to organize a little the market. It applies to contracts of exploitation. The existing operations should receive some publicity and a tax, similar to the Tobin tax could be introduced.

Mr. J. Peleman. - I'll explain what I mean when I talk about possible initiatives in Belgium. The big difference between imports and exports can be controlled because the Congolese export figures are available. If it is found that the Congo - Brazzaville begins to play an important role, so officially it does almost nothing, it is clear that trade passes through this country since the introduction of the new tax in the Congo. The Belgian authorities could go there and check the bills that arrive here, for example by checking if the company stated on the invoice does exist.
Africans say they can not explain the figures from Antwerp and he must take things out in Belgium. Our country could send a delegation of Economic Affairs to monitor all invoices with the expert diamond exports and the controller. Together, they can check for example if the volumes of diamonds and stocks are reported to export data and if the dealer is actually rendered abroad.
We thus return to the problem of traceability. We must make our own initiative, since many African countries can not even afford to send someone in Belgium to carry out audits. We, we have these resources. This should not be so expensive: we could limit ourselves to soundings.
This would firstly as a deterrent. If one has collected a number of evidence on a merchant, you can do it by interviewing Justice. Then we made clear in the middle of the diamond that we take things seriously. We do know, in the country of origin, smuggling is less tolerated in Belgium and the authorities of this country would do well to also tackle corruption.
We have military attaches and embassies in many conflict areas concerned. It is not necessary to conduct official state visits. Just send in the country a team of Economic Affairs and some customs officials so they can compare the statistics. Ask them to consider the figures of the fifteen largest exporters of diamonds. I think that could give results quickly enough and that it would anyway be aware of the problem. We need much more creativity than of major legislative initiatives that would only place in Belgium against the tide of Europe and the WTO and would push the markets to move to other malls. I think the diamond circles themselves would be happy to see it disappear a few bad apples without having to break the omerta.
I would like to talk about the craft business and the importance of the informal economy in the diamond sector. Currently, the Congo, 3 to 4 million people - mainly children - burrow soil in search of diamonds. It is possible that I underestimate this number, because the very poor economic conditions may push many more people to work in diamond mines. Garimpeiros northern Angola are Congolese. Millions of people live so the diamond in the hope of eventually finding a large stone.
Child labor is a very serious problem in this sector but at the same time, it is a pillar of economic survival. Before placing an embargo on Congolese diamonds, we must consider the negative consequences it may have for the population. In addition, embargoes as a magnet attracting specialists knowing the bypass and they cause a sharp rise in prices. The weapons are becoming more expensive and delivery in areas under embargo creates a profit higher than in providing legal weapons.
Embargoes can reach millions of people, but not major traffickers because they have their own networks and clandestine routes. I'm not so fan of embargoes.
In eastern Congo, the miners used to deploy a huge business, which has the disadvantage cons of maintaining some form of slavery. Some minors are simply enslaved and retain very little of the proceeds of their work. It is indeed largely an economy of occupation. We must take into account whenever the informal economy which is important for the survival of the population, but it is also fertile ground for the criminalization of the economy to a higher level.
GR 5 - Friday, December 14, 2001
Hearing of Mr. Stefaan Marysse, Professor (AU), and Catherine André, researcher (AU and UCL)

(President: Mr. Andrew Geens)

Mr. Stefaan Marysse. - Mrs. Andrew and I are going to discuss economic development and the plunder of the Great Lakes. I begin with the development of the Congo while Ms. Andre will look to Rwanda and Burundi. I will then discuss the definition of plunder, which differs from that of the United Nations. The term "looting" is difficult to define.

Mr. Chairman. - The commission does not intend to distinguish between legal and illegal plundering of raw materials. Both can, in fact, help finance the war.
The commission must still determine what it means by plundering but to me it is clear that looting may also be the result of a government "legal." The product raw materials must benefit the population. It benefits managers or finance the war for us is just as serious.

Mr. Stefaan Marysse. - The UN report is remarkable in some respects, but his definition of looting is a problem and I will.

Ms. Andre will make the link between looting and funding for the war in Rwanda and Uganda.

I will then discuss the financing of the war in Congo. In fact, looting is not only practiced by the rebels and the countries that invaded the Congo, but also wondered how the government finances the war. In this regard, there is a world of difference between Kabila and Kabila Junior Senior.
Finally, Ms. Andrew will discuss the policy of "two weights, two measures" found in development assistance in the region. By its presence in international institutions, Belgium could play an important role in this field.
First point. Evolution of development in the Congo. I will discuss the development of the Congo between 1975 and 2000. The looting is not new, but the war changed the situation and looting is facilitated by the collapse of the state and the influence of the military-commercial use.
There are to my mind two key factors. If we examine the formal economy, we see that the GNP has been reduced to one quarter of what it was 25 years ago. Everyone focuses on this point. The Congo is a laggard but it neglects an essential phenomenon, namely the substantial expansion of the informal economy, which compensates the collapse of the formal economy.

Kinshasa's population has doubled in twenty years. From 250,000 inhabitants in the time of Leopold III, it now has 6 million. People do not perhaps live comfortably but they have food and transportation.
The informal economy is a form of anti-crisis strategy of the population. It has all sorts of activities but is based primarily on petty commodity production: artisans produce goods and services tailored to the purchasing power of the population. It did not take sufficient account.
Then we find survival activities: visiting a Congolese market, one is struck by the decrease from year to year, the quantities of basic food sold in markets. This is the most telling test for measuring poverty. Piles of cassava are reduced more and more. Finally, there is the wild capitalism, mainly export all kinds of fraudulent products. For me, exports are not necessarily the looting.
In 2000, the average annual income per capita of Sub-Saharan Africa reached U.S. $ 321. Even income heavily indebted countries of this region is three times that of the Congo, which is only $ 85 U.S.. These figures, provided no World Bank, neglect certain aspects and show that the current income of the Congo is equal to half of what it would be if there were no war.
Since the political vacuum emerged after the fall of the Berlin Wall and the subsequent neglect of the West for Africa, the growth rate of the Congolese economy has declined dramatically. (He plans to clear the "cumulative growth rate of GDP in the DRC", see Annex No ...)
Over the past decade, the formal economy has collapsed and now represents only 30% of what it was at the time.

Using a few numbers, I will demonstrate the link between corruption, fraud, and state collapse (He refers again to the transparent "Table 5: the implosion of the formal economy and state "see schedule n °...)
In twenty years the population has doubled. The GNP is more than 30% of what it was twenty years ago. The state revenue reached $ 223 million, including the contribution of petroleum, Gecamines and MIBA. Ordinary income of Congo, a territory that extends from Paris to Moscow, are only 100 million dollars. The budget of the Congo represents exactly one-tenth that of Antwerp. You understand that under such conditions, people try to survive by any means. In Kinshasa, a university professor earns about 2,000 francs per month.
The collapse of the state has worsened in the 80s as a result of structural adjustment programs decided by the World Bank and IMF. The negative impact of these institutions on the Congolese economy is not measurable. The question that arises is how to rebuild the country without again increasing corruption.
Exports account for only a third of what they were twenty years ago, while imports remained at the same level. As a joke, saying that Congo is not overused but under-exploited. Copper production, essential for the Congo, is only 10% of what it was twenty years ago. And do not believe that exports only benefit large corporations.
Domestic production has suffered greatly from the crisis. Cement production is reduced to one third of what it was twenty years ago when the Congo could use large quantities. Cement consumption is an indicator of economic health. It is wrong to claim that the state of the informal economy has caused the decline of the formal economy
Diamond exports - 60% of total exports of Congo - are the only advance. And this is the western part of the country. I will come back an hour on the balance of payments and fraudulent exports.

Catherine Andre. - My comments will therefore focus on the macroeconomic environment that characterizes Rwanda and Burundi.
I begin by Rwanda. As you can see from the chart, the Rwandan economy tends to be dominated by the tertiary sector, for 38 to 40% of GDP, while agriculture remains strongly dominant participant at about 38% of GDP. You should know that in Rwanda, like Burundi, 90% of the population lives on agriculture.
As you can see, this economy is in decline since the mid 80s. Agricultural production decline and the economy suffers the adverse effects of the sharp decrease in exports from Rwanda, namely coffee and tea.
The decline is partly due to structural causes, but Rwanda has also suffered the full brunt of the war, instability and loss of confidence in the economy.
Rwanda has suffered several shocks extremely important. In 1993, first as a result of displacement of one-eighth of the population, that is to say a million. In 1994, then during the genocide, which resulted in the death of one million two hundred thousand people, displaced half the population and the return of eight hundred thousand former refugees who have replaced the political elite and merchant who are mainly settled in cities.
Rwandan society, already in deconstruction in the late 80's because of socioeconomic tensions resulting from the scarcity of land and the lack of economic alternatives, has also undergone a very significant social impact during the genocide.
The replacement of the political elite market and genocide led to the breakdown of trust networks, networks of mutual insurance, commercial networks, networks of patronage between the elite, the state and the peasantry.
Faced with such shocks, Rwanda responded in 1994 by devaluing its currency sharply, as evidenced in the graph. Donors open lines of credit outstanding, giving donations are extremely important in Rwanda. Following the genocide and because of the nature and magnitude of shocks it has suffered, Rwanda was regarded as a special case. It has, as such, virtually unconditional aid, as we shall see later.
It was also accepted very quickly in the process of six years should lead to a discount of 80% of its debt. He has since been supported by the IMF, and placed under the structural adjustment program, including the necessary condition for success is the stability of the economy.
Reconstruction, rehabilitation and measures of structural reforms aim to bring the country to endogenous development in a sustainable recovery from the private sector development. However, it should be understood that the effects of this stimulus appear broadly to be expected, firstly, because the economy is structurally weak and, secondly, because it is marked by insecurity and war, which limit the effects of economic measures undertaken.
In fact, despite a relatively rapid recovery of domestic production, the effective resumption of the different sectors remains low and in any case, below the level 90s.
Agriculture must grow on the one hand, the resumption of agricultural activities in the country, following in particular the return of refugees and, secondly, to enhance, by pastors, new land in the northeast.

Poverty strongly affects the agricultural sector, severely handicapped by extremely low productivity due to malnutrition, the feminization of labor, land conflicts and a serious decapitalization households.
The manufacturing sector does not resume, and faces competition from Uganda and South Africa. This sector depends heavily on imports of raw materials. It faces rising costs in local currency, raw materials imported, and that, following impairment losses. He must also cope with a very narrow market.
The construction and public works owes his recovery to reconstruction assistance, but the multiplier effects of growth in this sector remain confined to urban areas and do not operate on the whole economy, as expected the IMF.
The service sector, meanwhile, recovered quickly. The revival of the Rwandan economy actually comes from this recovery.
Is not observed, since 1995, recovery in domestic investment. In a volatile environment, the outlook in the medium and long term are limited.
We can not say that there is any real recovery in the private sector, to be the engine of economic development of Rwanda. There is, however, each year, capital flight outwards and minimum investment in profitable businesses in the short term, which of course have no multiplier effect on all economic sectors. Domestic recovery remains constrained in the context of war and insecurity.
The inflation rate is controlled mainly by international aid. The currency continues to depreciate, in response, particularly from lower income in the economy, reduced domestic supply, constant imbalance between resources and uses. Help deficits and attempts to provide balance - inside and out - of money. But overall, as shown by the depreciation of the Rwandan franc, Rwanda impoverished internationally.
The population suffers heavily the consequences of this situation. Factors fueling the vicious cycle of poverty are mainly insecurity, population movements, inadequate budgetary expenditures allocated to social sector and the reorientation of structural aid to the emergency assistance.
The humanitarian crisis is extremely grave in Rwanda, with a strong increase in the proportion of the population falling below the poverty line from 40% in 1985, it increased to 80% in 1997. According to the latest census, released in November this year, the proportion would be around 60%.
Revenues rose from $ 260 per capita in 1988 to 192 in 2000, and the mortality rate has almost doubled, from 128 per 1,000 in 1980 to 208 per 1,000 in the late 90s.
The multiplier effects of reconstruction aid funded are small and confined to urban centers. We observe, for this reason, a growing polarization of society along the axis between town and country, cities have mostly benefited from the reconstruction aid and public works.

The policy of the IMF and the World Bank aims primarily to support and stabilize the Rwandan economy, an economy that settles only with assistance.
Burundi's economy is dominated by agriculture which contributes 50% of GDP and provides livelihood to 90% of the population, as in Rwanda. Burundi is poorer than Rwanda, but the differences expressed in terms of income are not as great as in Rwanda, the secondary and tertiary sectors will each contribute 19 and 31% of GDP. The economy is poor but slightly more diversified and therefore more potential in Rwanda.
The economy is also inspired by years of war and insecurity, and political-military movement by 14% of the population are the crucial factors of economic decline in Burundi. The embargo imposed in July 1996 by neighboring countries following the coup of President Buyoya has had the effect of increasing the overall economic decline.
The agricultural sector was hit hard in 1993 and 1994, has responded quickly to improve security conditions in 1998. The recovery of the Burundian economy is agriculture, but it stalled in 1999 and 2000.
In terms of secondary and tertiary sectors, they suffer first decline since 1993 and a second shock when imposing the embargo.
The international community reacts to instability by reducing its aid to the balance of payments. Despite the political opening in 1992 and 1993, external assistance has declined sharply since 1993 and has shifted the balance of its assistance towards emergency assistance.
The government then redirect its scarce budgetary resources into military spending. The financial needs for the war are filled by the shift of scarce revenue to military spending and foreign borrowing by, between 1994 and 1996, and then, since the cutoff of external funds through domestic borrowing fueling inflation.
To meet its needs, the drain on State Pension also important export crops such as tea and coffee. The lifting of the embargo has enabled Burundi to re-import and repatriation of capital, but it remains isolated by the international community. He continues to accumulate arrears in external and external balance keeps extremely negative. The depreciation of the currency in Burundi is 80% since 1993 and reflects the loss of Burundi internationally. The number of people located below the poverty line has increased and poverty has worsened: 60% of the population is concerned. In 1993, poverty has increased by 80% in rural areas and 50% in cities.
As a result of population displacement and widespread insecurity, the primary school enrollment rate increased from 70% to 44% from 1993 to the late 90's. The mortality rate from 110 per thousand to 136 per thousand during the same period. One child in five suffers from chronic malnutrition. This reflects the growing poverty reduction in real income in all segments of the population and all sectors of the economy, although some segments of the population have benefited from the war and embargo.
This poverty also reflects the growing exclusion of the population to health care and education, and the redirection of budgetary resources to military spending over social spending and investment. This poverty also reflects the withdrawal of aid that partly subsidized sector.
In conclusion, we can say that the economies of Rwanda and Burundi are structurally weakened since the early 80s, and they felt the full brunt of insecurity and war. On the one hand, Rwanda has received massive support in the aftermath of genocide and was significantly supported by the international community, which enabled him to provide some economic stability. On the other hand, Burundi is isolated from the international community. We will return later on policies.

Mr. Stefaan Marysse. - Economies of Congo, Rwanda and Burundi have the same trend toward marginalization and impoverishment.
I turn to the third point, looting and its relationship with war. Let us put first the general context. In 1989, has created a geopolitical vacuum in all of Africa because of the slowdown of development assistance. This phenomenon is very noticeable in Congo, a little less to Rwanda after 1995. On the other hand, we are witnessing an economic marginalization of Africa. An example: all the countries of SSA export value as much as Singapore which has only 3 million. In Africa, there is not too much globalization but too little. These two factors mean that African elites have much greater autonomy, but are faced with empty coffers.
This double movement has led to what political scientists call the "criminalization of the state." Unless it is present, this phenomenon is more important. Plus the basement is richer, the political, military and commercial will seek to strengthen its position. It is within this context that I intend to situate the looting. Attention, such a phenomenon is not inevitable. Some countries in sub-Saharan Africa are doing better than the tigers of Southeast Asia while democracies. The economies of Botswana and Mauritius are growing faster than those of Southeast Asia. Mauritius has a diverse economy and exports in most industrial products. The more I travel in Africa, the more I am surprised of the differences between countries. However, it is clear that the state coffers empty combined with a political vacuum increases the risk of criminalization as a strategy to African elites. War is a means to strengthen their autonomy. It is within this context that we must situate the criminalization looting.
The definition proposed by the UN report a problem. For the Congo, one wonders who is the legitimate authority. That is the debate about the "rebels" and the Kinshasa government. Each challenges the legitimacy of the other, although the new president has an informal legitimacy in Western countries, which is not really the case for the occupants and the "rebels" of the east .
Is there therefore a better definition of looting? As an economist, I speak of looting when part of the value leaving the country without being compensated by imports equivalent.

Raw materials such as diamond can be exported illegally, but if the dollars they provide are reinvested in the country, it is not my opinion of looting. The difference is important. This is the only way to understand the link with the war funding. One can only speak of looting when foreigners or residents of a country place a portion of the value of exports in a secret account or invest in activities that do not benefit the country. The Congo has been plundered under Leopold II, much less 1908 to 1960 and again under President Mobutu, especially after 1973. The looting has intensified as a result of the weakening of the state. Statistics from the Diamond High Council show that the looting did not begin with the war. (He refers to the chart "Exports of diamonds from some African countries to Belgium (1980-1995)" see Schedule No. ....)
Exports known Congolese diamonds arriving in Antwerp amounted to approximately $ 700 million, while the Congolese official figure is 200 to 300 million. In the 90s, fraudulent exports accounted for two to three times official exports. According to statistics, exports of diamonds from Congo - Brazzaville reach 500 million while the country produces almost no diamonds. Fraudulent exports total amount to six times the total budget of the Congo, which is obviously due to the weakness of the state. Indeed, Botswana also sells diamonds, but the income from this activity, invested abroad, allow it to finance all public expenditures on health and education.
Fraudulent exports are they plunder? It depends on the importance of returning the value either way in the Congo. I make a clear difference between east and west. For me, looting the share of added value that comes out of the country without benefit-cons. In the area of ​​Mbuji Mayi, 80% of the total value of exports, one way or another, back into the circuit. The looting there on that 20% of fraudulent exports.

To the east, the added value that comes out of the country is, according to our data, 50% of the total value of coltan. This is explained by two phenomena. On the one hand, military occupation is much more repressive in the east. On the other hand, new products are exported. Since 1999, we are seeing a rise in price of coltan, which is used among others in mobile phones. Coltan is not subject to public trading and the local population does not realize its value. There is however an international office in Brussels. The commission should ask for information on prices. In any case, I do not get it. I would be happy to know the prices of the last three years. We could thus calculate the real value of exports of coltan.
Professor Reyntjens and I believe that the value of looting following the war is between 5 and 5.3% of GNP of the Congo.
The diamond is concerned especially that of Kisangani, for the jewelry, which has a value greater than the diamond area of ​​Mbuji Mayi. It represents nearly 10% of the total production of diamonds from Congo.

For 1999 and 2000, especially coltan, which is important. Much of the added value leaves the country. The destruction of the rainforest in eastern Congo is also a disaster. Every day, timber shipments cross the border into Uganda.
Ms. Andre will now explain what this economy to plunder Congo and Uganda. I will then discuss the importance of the Kabila regime to the allies.

Catherine Andre. - The graphic you have in front indicates the added values ​​for diamond, gold, coltan and timber, returning in 1999 and 2000, in Rwanda or Uganda.
As explained by Professor Marysse, we tried to measure the organized looting by Rwanda and Uganda, trying to assess the portion of value added re-exports of various mining and timber from the Congo. These products have been exported by Rwanda and Uganda. For each, I checked the official exports, particularly as they appear in the reports of the IMF or the United Nations. We calculated the value of re-exports for each product and the share of value added back to Rwanda and Uganda.
As the table shows, for Rwanda's coltan plunder which gives the full extent. For Rwanda, the re-export of looted goods was 8.4% in 1999 and 7.1% in 2000. This is huge for an economy as small as that of this country.
This re-enables it to double its official military spending. It represents virtually all the aid in 2000 and two thirds in 1999.
For Uganda, the re-export of the Congo is significantly less in economic terms, first, because the total value added is relatively lower than for Rwanda and, secondly, because the economy Uganda is stronger. In this graph, also appear - Professor Marysse talked about - assessment of losses in the Congo, namely 5% of GDP in 1999 and 2000.
For the calculation of value added, we initially based on several types of information regarding the production of the countries concerned. Then we tried to identify the share of value added remained in the Congo. For diamonds and gold, overall, this share is estimated at 80%, the remaining 20% ​​returning to Rwanda and Uganda, while for coltan, it is only 25%, barely.

As stated by Professor Marysse, for diamonds and gold, the value remaining in the Congo is more important for small farmers and traders are particularly aware of prices. For coltan, Rwanda has benefited from a substantial effect "market" and especially "price rise".
I turn to the differences between the networks of Uganda and Rwanda. In terms of gold, diamonds and coltan, Rwanda has a greater control of all military branches. Uganda undertakes rather to facilitate the exploitation and transportation by relying on local networks. If the economic plundering of the Congo existed before the war, how it is done has changed with the war: it was free for the Congolese for a long time, and he realizes now more under military supervision and on behalf of two armies . What does the military control of these channels? It offers a maximum pension armies that act on the local market as a monopolist. As we have seen, the total value added of exported ores is relatively more important for Rwanda for Uganda. In the case of Rwanda, the profits of plunder are extra: they appear in any national account. In either case, the benefits are partly formalized: they participated in the growth of the Ugandan economy.
Rwanda has established a system for extrabudgetary fund its presence in Congo, while Uganda has operated more transparently: formalizing its re-exports and levying additional taxes on re-exports, Uganda was able in fact , increase revenues and budget, in the same proportion, its military spending. In both cases, the looting has provided funding for military spending. On the Rwandan side, looting benefits a network that self-funds the war on the Ugandan side, not only to network but also to the state.
In view of the profits obtained by these two networks, the economic presence in Congo of the two armies are important. The cost of removal or application of the Lusaka Agreement would be higher for Rwanda. Uganda relies more on structures and local networks with which it could continue its business - that's what he does now - even if the monopoly and control of military exercises that it ensures higher profits. For Rwanda, for cons, the withdrawal of troops and a pacification of the region would mean a loss of control of re-export of coltan, in any case, exploitation of gold ore that was previously passed by Burundi. In other words, the continuing conflict and maintenance of violence can collect profits well above those achieved under conditions of peace and openness of markets to competition.
Violence in the region has a cost to the public. Congo, the latest survey reported 2.5 million deaths in the conflict and indicates an impoverishment of the entire region. MSF will release shortly a report warning that the situation is extremely worrying in areas of conflict in Congo.

It is quite clear in regard to Rwanda, the profits of plunder are not reinvested in the Rwandan economy and they have therefore no to people. The looting has also benefited in Uganda it has increased its military expenditure but also to a lesser extent, its expenditure on development and social spending. The looting of Congo's resources existed well before the start of the war, particularly regarding diamonds and gold. The war has caused a diversion of profits from the plunder for the benefit of other actors and other networks, local or national. In conclusion, the war resulted in the puncture of much larger profits.

Mr. Stefaan Marysse. - Government official, too, need capital to finance the war. Laurent-Desire Kabila and his son Joseph took very different measures to finance the war. There are 120,000 soldiers who each earn $ 100 per month. How Kabila has he funded?
Laurent-Desire Kabila was initially overvalued franc Congolese operation to buy dollars against a few Congolese francs. A wide gap was created between the official value of the Congolese franc, and its real market value. Governments try to control the informal brokers without success, giving birth to a black market.
A second measure was to control the illegal exports of diamonds. The diamonds were then sold in Brazzaville, which has lost to Kabila half of its budget in two years.
A third attempt - also used by invading countries - is to create a monopoly for the purchase of diamonds. Kabila granted a monopoly to an Israeli firm. All manufacturers were forced to sell their diamonds through this firm. The only result of this measure is that diamonds are then smuggled out of the country and the black market has become even more important.
Kabila has also attempted to obtain loans from very questionable sources. It bordered the criminalization of the state.
Another practice is to impose minimum prices for gasoline. Kabila has made this decision as a social measure. It has also spawned a black market, gasoline being transported to Brazzaville by the military to be sold four times more expensive, which obviously has to fund the military of Congo - Kinshasa.

The principal means of financing the war is to run the printing press, as Mubutu has so often done. The dollar, which traded against two Congolese francs in 1998, is now worth 350 francs Congolese.
Kabila's son takes action inspired by a Marxist archaic. A weak state can not control the economy. Cons-productive measures were abolished in May. It has taken steps that have quickly stabilized the currency, which satisfies the population because there is nothing worse for her as hyperinflation.
It now expects more of the future. Structural support should reinforce the positive signals. We must continue to insist that the Lusaka accords are implemented and that the inter-Congolese dialogue will continue. The state must be funded with strict external control.
There was virtually no looting on the side of Angola and Namibia. Angola abstains mainly for political reasons. The fight against Savimbi requires a stable regime in Kinshasa. These are the Angolan soldiers who have provided stability on the death of Laurent-Desire Kabila.
Zimbabwe is comparable to Uganda. Congo's war costs a million Zimbabwe dollars per day, amount financed in part by inflation plaguing the country.

Who benefits? From a military perspective, Kabila could never stay in place without Zimbabwe, but it is located on the front and therefore in the diamond mining areas. It is obvious that the people of Zimbabwe is paying the price. However, a small group of soldiers, politicians and businessmen close to President Mugabe richer thanks to the war. For example, the Chief of Staff of the Army of Zimbabwe in Congo is also the head of Zimbabwe Defence Industries, a company that sells military equipment and transportation deals. It is also the head of a whole series of parastatals. Gara, step-son of Mugabe, was also a kind of parastatal and co-owns a bank in Zimbabwe. Zimbabwe Defence Industries has concluded in the early years of the contracts for an amount of 15 to 17 million dollars for the delivery of equipment to Congo.

Catherine Andre. - I will conclude by presenting the policy of "two weights, two measures" of the international community vis-à-vis the countries of the region, including the policy of the EU, very present in this region. In some countries in the region, official development assistance provided by the EU has sometimes reached 70% of total aid during the period 1990-1998.
At the evolutionary level, we find that the overall structural support to countries in the region has fallen sharply. Thus, in the space of thirteen years, the EU structural aid to Burundi has been divided by eight, with Rwanda and Uganda, by two. She was only partially restored in the form of emergency assistance to the Great Lakes Region, which monopolizes between 30 and 34% of emergency aid from the EU.
The detailed evolution of aid to countries involved in the Congo war breaks down as follows: Congo has seen its overall development assistance decline from 1990. In 1999, she was less even on the seventh of the reference amount, whether of 1990, following the withdrawal of bilateral cooperation - that of Belgium in the first place - and some multilateral cooperation. These withdrawals were primarily motivated by political considerations. Since coming to power of Joseph Kabila, we see the openings and a slow resumption of structural aid, recovery still imperceptible on the chart you have before you.
The IMF, it conditions the resumption of relations with the Congo with criteria of economic and financial order, in priority of payment of arrears and the reordering of the accounts.
Burundi has received a slight development assistance under the government of Ndadaye, helps somewhat increased during the democratic opening, before falling again in 1998 following the coup Buyoya. The condemnation of the coup in neighboring countries has been followed by the international community, particularly by the EU. In 1998, ODA was less than a quarter of its 1994-1995 level. The EU suspended the aid in 1997 to resume in 1998. However, the programs are largely remained conditioned by the progress of negotiations.

The IMF determines the recovery of any program to a certain economic stabilization. As we have shown in several articles, the economic criteria for Burundi are generally met but mainly political reasons justify the present choice of the IMF despite the fact that it is hiding behind largely economic criteria.
In conclusion, in the case of Burundi and Congo, aid has been suspended for political reasons and remains conditional on democratic advances. In addition, IMF conditions the resumption of its aid to economic criteria.
Rwanda has received a slight increase in ODA between 1990 and 1993, following the adoption of a structural adjustment program. Second, public support has doubled in 1994 and 1995 to meet the enormous economic impact caused by the genocide and war. But it declined from 1995 and reached in 1998, half its 1995 level. Rwanda is considered a very special case by the aid agencies. He recognizes his need for external aid, whatever its internal situation. Therefore, for international institutions, multilateral and bilateral, Rwanda has an exceptional situation that allows it to receive aid virtually unconditional. This exceptional situation has been recognized by the EU from 1998.
The war which is involved in Rwanda is seen as meeting the objectives of Homeland Security, which is why, according to the chart, that war has little influence on the level of aid. Even if Rwanda is encouraged to respect the peace agreements and to implement them, even if it is regularly invited by the IMF has cut its military spending and increase social spending, it has never really been punished for have not complied.
Uganda has remained during the last decade, the last country to draw more funds into the region, although public support has tended to decline from 1998. From the 1990s, this country is considered a regional leader, as a politically and economically. Indeed, it is the first country in the region to have been accepted into the program of debt reduction in 1996. Also, Uganda has already received two tranches of debt forgiveness.
Despite a growing militarization, despite widespread corruption, the IMF granted him a virtually unconditional support. Uganda is still urged to reduce its military spending. Indeed, multilateral institutions say they often worried about his involvement in the war in Congo. But despite the threat of multilateral institutions, no action was taken because of this involvement.
As for Angola, he sees his public support rise. This country is under the structural adjustment plan in 1996 and also enjoys a virtually unconditional support. Therefore, in the case of Rwanda, Uganda and Angola, the volumes of aid are drained by economic reform programs undertaken by the IMF. The attitude of the multilateral institutions is described as positive. These countries are actually under the structural adjustment program and are regarded as being in low-conflict and the aid is designed to help build an environment conducive to economic stability and development, the emergence of a rule of law and democratic progress. The aid is considered a precondition for democratic openness and economic stability.
Zimbabwe has received assistance doubled in 1992, aid has nevertheless declined in subsequent years.

Zimbabwe saw the last two years, serious economic problems. The structural adjustment program was lifted in 1998 because of Zimbabwe's involvement in the war in Congo, in particular, although this was not the main reason.
Adjustment programs and financial support have been frozen, on the one hand, due to macroeconomic instability and, secondly, for his involvement in the war in Congo.
How to summarize the positions of the EU, IMF and other multilateral institutions? The EU stands for a policy of aid on a case by case basis differential. It requires respect for human rights, rule of law, democratic principles and good governance, under penalty of suspension of aid.
We have just seen, this policy is applied in the case of Congo and Burundi, where political conditions are attached to the grant of aid, including the continuation of inter-Congolese dialogue, the openings or democratic progress in the peace negotiations in Burundi .
By cons in the case of Angola, Rwanda and Uganda, aid is seen as necessary to encourage and promote democratic openings and development. The EU applies mainly to a policy known as selective positive.
The IMF imposes conditions on countries such as compliance with a maximum percentage of military spending, a maximum amount of monetary reserves, investment rates, etc.. In short, the IMF requires some economic stability. In the eyes of the EU, the IMF is a guarantor of good management of volumes of aid provided by multilateral institutions. The IMF, in supporting a country rather than another, apply, too, in this region, the policy of "two weights, two measures".
As we have seen, the Congo war has not involved the suspension of aid nor the IMF programs, except for Zimbabwe, whose involvement in the war was used as an additional argument.
Aid and the amounts awarded and the programs have not been modified. The policy on a case by case leads to consider war as an outside but legitimate if it meets the search for greater security for some countries. However, it is clear that the security objectives camouflage sometimes economic objectives.
What are the adverse effects of this policy of "two weights, two measures? On the one hand, a policy of almost unconditional support for Rwanda, Angola, Uganda and, secondly, a conditional policy for the Congo, Burundi and Zimbabwe. This position represents a powerful support given to aid recipient countries in the region, countries really strong position on the political level and in negotiations.
In aid levels, the external balance of Rwanda is funded for two-thirds from the outside, that of Uganda for a third. There is also a growth in military spending in the budget. It is clear that Burundi, Rwanda and Angola do give budgetary priority to their security and defense.

For example, for 1999 shows that Burundi spends 7% of GDP on military expenditures and only 4.6% for social spending. Rwanda spends the equivalent of 4% of GDP to military spending and social spending to 4%. If we compare these figures with those of Uganda, we see the opposite, Uganda devoting only 2% of GDP on military expenditure as against 4.7% for social spending. By cons, Angola affects almost 22% of its GDP to military spending to 4% against social spending.
Aid recipient countries benefit from wider opportunities they offer to conduct maneuver warfare while achieving certain objectives of economic stability, particularly in the context of structural adjustment led by the IMF and to perform certain social expenditure, although they are insufficient, as in Angola or Rwanda. We can see that war creates enormous pressure on military spending.
In the case of Burundi and Congo, which receives much less support, we see that the pressure exerted on military spending at the expense of social spending or development, the risk of extreme impoverishment of the population and a very strong destabilizing the economy.
For the assisted countries, the economic consequences of war are important because reform programs are inefficient compared with the basic objective, namely those countries out of the vicious circle of debt by boosting growth through investment particularly in the private sector. The economic consequences, from the moment the objectives of this sector are not met, result in social costs even more important. They realized, as we heard at the beginning of the presentation by the growth of poverty, inequality and social polarization.

Mr. Michiel Maertens (AGALEV). - Rwanda receives unconditional aid. It is considered a special case. Ms. André said that Rwanda is not sanctioned. I would like more explanation on this. Donors will they realize that their help strengthen the economy of war of the powerful Rwandan army and they realize counteract the Lusaka? To what extent do they argue not, directly or indirectly, the mechanisms of looting? I refer to the link between foreign interests, World Bank and IMF. For both institutions, corporate interests undoubtedly fall into play. The speakers can they uncover those links and give names and numbers? These are they in the Yearbook of the Great Lakes?
The continuation of the war relates far more than the implementation of the Lusaka Agreement. Is it the same for multinationals? I do not think only in the diamond trade and especially that of coltan.
Since 1995-1996, European aid fell in Rwanda. Since then, international aid programs grow dramatically. Given that Europe's share in these programs remains the same, this increase in aid is largely funded by Europe.
It is therefore hypocritical misuse of European aid. Our government and the European Union does not have to correct the situation if our analysis is correct?
How can we control the export of diamonds to Antwerp via Brazzaville fraudulent?
In the FAO report spring 2001, plans to import food aid to about 150,000 tons, whereas before the 1990 war, 25,000 tons were imported. How to explain? Despite the farm support programs, agriculture does not recover in Rwanda. What is the explanation? Is this due to population explosion?
For gold, diamonds and coltan, is it possible to determine how prices are set in the various links in the marketing chain?

SOGEM is again always cited. Can we estimate the share of value-added returns to scale producer, the middleman, military groups and government?
Is it possible to split this estimate based on the different blocks?
We have not yet had the opportunity to consult the Yearbook of the Great Lakes. Experts can possibly refer.

Mr. Chairman. - Alongside the official budget, Rwanda also has a budget unofficial war. Can we have information on this?
What is the nature of European aid to Rwanda? In my view, aid is not neutral. Besides support for projects, there is budget support. This is especially the latter which can be diverted. This is not at all neutral. The question is where it goes.

Mr. Jacques D'Hooghe (CD & V). - Have you any idea what is happening with other minerals? What is the importance of copper, cobalt and oil reserves that have been found?
You seem optimistic as regards the policy of the young Kabila, through which the economy could be restructured. It's important to get international support. However, we have heard in previous hearings that Kabila had very little influence. He has moral authority, but it is feared that he would not lose quickly because the situation does not improve and he can perform a number of things. What do you think?

Georges Dallemagne (SGP). - I have three questions.
Firstly, I was struck by the seriousness of social indicators. I think, particularly, increased rates of mortality and malnutrition, and other indicators of social dualism and impoverishment of these countries as a whole.
The ODA has she not been, in some countries, a factor worsening the social situation, since it was not subject to the criteria of good management or policies relating the orientation of the state budget? Apparently, the official development assistance has in any case, had no positive effects. Would it not fallen into a trap and so she would not have, in some way, contribute to worsening the situation?
I have some experience in the humanitarian field. We have already demonstrated that in some cases, had worsened the humanitarian situation and resulted in war, in a sense, the prolonged conflict and a social and humanitarian situation distressing for people.
Public aid, are they not now face such problems?
I turn to my second question. We noted the pivotal importance of a number of cities or countries, such as Kigali, Zimbabwe, Uganda, as places of transit for trade in a range of raw materials. Could be envisaged, economic law, to prevent these spaces play such a role?
How to make in these places, war is less profitable than peace? We could make it through, firstly, the ODA, which is extensively involved in state budgets and, secondly, by the prohibition of a series of business practices.
My third question relates to the national accounts. This is an important problem which concerns not only Rwanda because, according to my information, I also ask you to confirm or deny, the majority of oil revenues - huge - are not integrated in national accounts.
We are facing a fool's game: it has accounts that do not correspond to economic reality and a series of economic measures targeting the financing of the war, are generated through revenues opaque but generally very high, and that does not allow the establishment of a transparent dialogue on political and cooperation.
A basic condition should exist in this respect vis-à-vis countries receiving structural aid or budget. The transparency of national accounts should not she be the first criterion should be based where there is cooperation or political dialogue?

Paul Wille (VLD). - Professor Marysse spoke of loans from dubious people. Who issues these loans? What technique do we use? Are these loans granted in the total absence of control or they pass through banks? Belgian and Dutch banks are involved? What is the influence of the circuits of Eastern Europe? Refunds are also doubtful they? What is the magnitude of the profits from these loans?

Ms. Sabine de Bethune (CD & V). - Professor Marysse advocates that we consider a refinancing of the Congolese state through international assistance, it is true, with strict audits, so that a rule of law can be formed. How does he see such a mechanism audits? How can a democratic audit is it possible without falling back into neo-colonialism? What ideas about this?

Mr. Stefaan Marysse. - It's been four years since we carry out annual discussions about this with the IMF. Rwanda and Uganda receive unconditional aid, including budget. Say what that means for health care must be used, everyone knows that, in weak states, assets are fungible.
About double what they use officially in the military budget is financed by this war. We pretended not to know, hence the great importance of this report which reveals the mechanisms of financing the war.
Our latest annual report contains a section on how the industry is organized coltan. Bruylants journalist also wrote a series of very interesting articles on the subject.
It has confused the role of donors and multinationals. I'd be more careful. The Congo and Zimbabwe have been marginalized by the donor countries. The international community has very clearly argued against Rwanda and Uganda. If Europe were less consistent, the World Bank and IMF have clearly given preference in Rwanda and Uganda. That is what we call in a somewhat irreverent credit genocide. The West has not been up in the Rwanda crisis, it sought to compensate in this way.
Coltan makes a million dollars a month to the rebels. There are two groups of rebels, Banyamulenge and former Mobutu supporters. After the Lusaka agreement, how much they weigh in the national government? Which means they will have?

I guess they weigh the pros and cons. It is obvious that if a political agreement is reached, they will lose political and economic influence. They then have no incentive to make peace quickly. Although the chances of achieving peace are fragile, we must continue to support Lusaka, do not over play the game of financing inter-Congolese dialogue and provide more structural support.
This brings me to the question of Mrs. Bethune. With regard to coltan, I refer you to Defailly text, which describes very accurately the chain that extends from the pioneer craft to large traders such SOGEM. The economy is barely 0.05% of our total trade. If Belgium wants to boycott the few companies mentioned, the appeal should not unilaterally come to our country. I would prefer that Belgium supports the United Nations' call for a boycott against all warring parties and all parts Economic.
What is of interest to multinationals? The Congo is a source of coltan, which represents only 10% of their needs but is very flexible. These companies do not have to fund any infrastructure, nor take any risks on site. In addition, the increase in demand does not depend on their production. In this sense, the Congo is interesting but not crucial.
Mr. D'Hooghe, I have not actually talked about other ores. Cobalt ore is very important. Contracts concluded by Laurent Kabila with Zimbabwean companies certainly contribute to finance the war by Joseph Kabila. One of the companies is "Ridgepointe Overseas" whose director, Mr Rautenbach, also headed the treatment of the remains of copper stored for years and which contain the remains of cobalt. This happened in Likasi. I give you an idea of ​​performance.

In 1999, the monthly output was 150 tons of cobalt, which corresponds to 6 million. Belgian companies, such as the former Union Miniere, adopt the same attitude as all the major mining companies serious: they do not participate in the operation. They consider it a bad investment because the state of disrepair and lack of infrastructure. Companies that invest in such operations intended to make big profits in the short term by buying and selling. Serious mining companies, who have mastered the art of refining, show little interest.
Unlike his father, Joseph Kabila has taken very brave despite the tensions. So there is a glimmer of hope.
What can be the alternative to the implementation of the Lusaka for a regime that enjoys a growing legitimacy and support conditional? If the war continues, the situation in Central Africa will be similar to that of Somalia. For Belgium, the consequences may be not directly economic. If Congo is dislocated and that the territory fell into the hands of warlords, as is already the case in the east, it will be a very destabilizing effect, including Europe. Already observe some effects. We have no interest in what the territory is divided or destabilized.

Mr. Jacques D'Hooghe (CD & V). - I referred to the link you made between the granting of aid and the influence of Kabila. The previous hearings revealed that Kabila had very little influence. What do you think?

Mr. Stefaan Marysse. - The government of Congo is almost over. With a budget equivalent to one tenth of that of the City of Antwerp, the economic impact is very low. Kabila has neutralized the five people who had a negative influence under the previous regime. We must support these efforts. Previously, the IMF and World Bank would not discuss the Congo. Today, there is an opening.
Should strengthen the control of national economies. It is their weakness and undemocratic nature of IMF and World Bank are a problem, not the power of these institutions. They are very influential in the monitoring of macroeconomic policy and auditing.
Relations between Belgium and Congo have always been ambivalent. The weakness of Belgium is to be too little presence in international institutions and therefore can not weigh enough about them.

Mr. Michiel Maertens (AGALEV). - You have to plead for the maintenance of Congolese unity, but the Americans have a totally different thing. What may be their economic motives?

Mr. Stefaan Marysse. - I do not think this attitude hides a great economic conspiracy. They obviously opted for Museveni and Kagame, who were trained at Westpoint. They wanted to make a pyromaniac firefighter. Today we see that it does not really work well. Sub-Saharan Africa is not a priority for the United States. Europe has a role to play. If Belgium had been more present in international and European institutions, it was possible to counter U.S. policy. But there remained one major political player in Africa: the United States.

Catherine Andre. - The human drama, social, economic has lived with the Rwanda genocide was a shock extremely important. Poverty or access to care will not be resolved without doubt with emergency assistance. We must restore the commercial networks. In terms of agriculture, there is a problem recapitalization of households. Half the population has moved back and without income, without seeds. They can no longer afford to recapitalize agriculture, that is to say to keep part of their harvest for next year and reinvest again. The commercial networks have been completely destroyed. In 1998, I found, in eastern Rwanda, some networks resumed development, with Uganda, but this concerned mainly the eastern regions.
The problem of poverty, access to healthcare and schooling must be analyzed within the framework of the structural problem of Rwanda, which is nothing but the genocide of the 1980s. Rwanda is extremely poor has nothing to offer: tea and coffee do not report anything to the farmer who lives on sweet potatoes and beans. It depends on outside sources for their health care. For any other consumer good, Rwandans, Burundians, Congolese rural areas depend on external radio, over oil, a candle. It does make it perhaps not sufficiently considered.
Currency depreciates, we adopt policies to encourage devaluation export crops and diversification, but these policies can be effective in the current political environment in the context of war and instability that tends to maintain .
Poverty is the much broader question of economic development and solutions to the Rwanda and Burundi. Can be seen, the structural adjustment policies are to failure, simply because the conditions essential for their success - which is to promote not even a slight development of the private sector - are not met.

Georges Dallemagne (SGP). - There is a collapse of economic indicators, a greater polarization: the poor are getting poorer.

Catherine André .- This is a direct effect of the reconstruction.

Georges Dallemagne (SGP). - Can we consider that the official development assistance, under conditions where it is practiced today, is fueling this process instead of the brake because, being a structural support, the state benefits for a war effort to reorient its policies, for neglecting the fight against poverty? It somehow opens the taps of good conscience - you've talked about a credit genocide - but we do not struggle against poverty and, ultimately, we participate in a system that makes it worse.

Catherine Andre. - The reconstruction causes the same two-tier society in Uganda and Angola, and the benefits of reconstruction and rehabilitation have become cities in the construction sector. This is a first effect that we found, especially in Uganda until 1994. Subsequently, the effects have changed.
As part of Rwanda, we are faced with incommensurable needs, clear and objective. Conditional aid policy is one thing. For Rwanda, I do not think this is a solution given the government is that of that country. Yet in 1996, the Belgian lobby had pressured at the World Bank and IMF for Rwanda reduced its military spending: in fact, the portion of credit should be given by the World Bank has been reviewed at the Board and the decision was postponed for a few months. One could say that to put pressure on Rwanda can influence the course of things. Also, I do not think conditioning or lift using either a solution within the framework of Rwanda. To me, it's a political choice.

Georges Dallemagne (SGP). - One can imagine that one is at a different time in the history of development aid, but in the meantime, paradoxically, this "good conscience" non-productive in the fight against poverty, will had, in Rwanda, a human cost that will be added to the cost genocide, human cost that we might have been avoided. I think we are heading, anyway, to help that will probably be subject to criteria such policy.

Catherine Andre. - Since the UN report, I do believe that we are moving in that direction.
Mr. Maertens also questioned whether we could determine the value of the various links. Indeed, I tried to discover what was happening at the "diggers", traders, dealers. The situation is extremely complex and depends on the region, how to proceed. Moreover, it is very difficult to get information, it is a long process. In this case, we tried to have flashes, to discover how the looting was an issue and how it could finance the war. We do not want to analyze all the disparities of looting but we wanted to quickly get an evaluation.

Mr. Stefaan Marysse. - There are rumors of loans worth 300 million granted to the Kabila regime to finance the war and the purchase of arms, including MIG and resorts. Nobody knows whether these loans were actually made and how much money was eventually paid. We have never seen the beach, no more than MIG. The loan was granted by the Lebanese and, as far as I know, there was no Belgian or Dutch banks involved.

Paul Wille (VLD). - What do you think Nigerian networks?

Mr. Stefaan Marysse. - The Nigerian networks are known primarily for laundering drug money.

Mr. Michiel Maertens (AGALEV). - Dr. Andrew Could we send the documents that allowed him to make his presentation interesting?
I have not yet received an answer to my question about the import of wheat in Rwanda. Is it possible that food aid is limited to cities and not reaching the countryside because of insecurity and the presence of the RPF? I have not obtained an answer to my question about the traffic of diamonds, but you may have not. However, we believe that this is an important point.

Mr. Chairman. - I have not yet received an answer to my question about the relationship between the actual cost of the Rwandan army and the amounts budgeted? Nor did I have any real answer to my second question on aid to Rwanda, divided according to its nature. What is the total amount of aid received by the country? What percentage of budget support and assistance for projects? What interests me primarily is the percentage of budget support in the total budget of Rwanda.

Catherine Andre. - In the case of Rwanda, a half share in the projects, the other half share in budget support. This proportion is also observed with regard to Uganda.

Mr. Stefaan Marysse. - In recent years, Rwanda has received numerous food aid. Despite this broad support, rural areas have not recovered and poverty have become much greater. The opposition between rural and urban areas increased further, which also has repercussions on ethnicity. PRSP - Poverty Reduction Strategy Paper - is the new instrument of the World Bank and IMF. It assumes that food aid program to combat poverty and enable growth.
Rural poverty and inequality in income has risen sharply. The only countries where the Malthusian can be applied are Rwanda and Burundi, the most populous countries in SSA. There is a structural problem in the long term. Increased productivity is virtually impossible because of population pressure.
The problems are exacerbated by the current regime. Until a conciliation board shall not be established and that a dialogue will be established, the problem will never be solved seriously.
Our information on the import of diamonds in Belgium come from the Diamond High Council, which, unlike what happens in other countries, has pursued a very transparent. In Belgium, we know exactly where diamonds come from. According to our calculations, the quantity of diamonds coming directly from Uganda and Rwanda to Antwerp is negligible and does not correspond to the quantity of diamonds coming out of Kisangani. The diamond exported from Rwanda and Uganda begins with Israel or South Africa and then by Great Britain, before arriving at Antwerp. The policy of Israel and Great Britain are much less transparent about the source of their diamonds, we do not know either. Officially, exports from Rwanda and Uganda is only 10% of the actual export. 90% of the diamonds take a different circuit.

Transparency imposed on the Diamond High Council should apply to Israel and Great Britain.

Mr. Chairman. - You spoke of the Lusaka Agreement. Mention Lusaka for Congo or Burundi, but not for Rwanda.
There were many victims during the Rwandan genocide, but in the Congolese conflict, discussed so far, 2.5 million people to a minimum.
Do you have an explanation for this selective conscience of the world community? This concerns me since the day, there are fourteen years ago, I was appointed as Minister of Development Cooperation.

Mr. Stefaan Marysse. - I can only agree with your comments. The Rwanda genocide was committed in a very short period and has aroused great interest among the media. The dead in eastern Congo are less dramatic, which does not interest the media. They are the consequence of instability in the region and a shortage of food and health care.

Note: Subesequent testimony on the diamond trade was given in Enlgish and is avaialbe from the Belgian Senate.