Our December edition is focusing on war profiteering in the Democratic Republic of Congo(DRC). We feel that it is important to highlight the responsibilities that corporations have in the ongoing crisis in DRC.
After decades of colonialism, dictatorship and wars, on Wednesday, 6 December 2006, the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) swore in its first fair and freely elected president since independence from Belgium in 1960. "This moment marks the beginning of a new era that must bring well-being and development to Congo's people", said president Joseph Kabila (35) at his inauguration ceremony outside the presidential palace in the capital city Kinshasa.
There are many corporations profiteering in DRC; the mining industry is one of the most involved in the destabilization of the country.Following there is a list of some of these corporations, and from all of them we will highlight one: The Forrest Group
The Forrest Group has the longest history of exploiting the Congo, gaining its first mining concessions before the Congo declared independence from the Belgians. The group, which includes the Ohio-based OM Group, has numerous concessions in Katanga (Shaba).
Warring groups compete for rich resources. This includes gold, diamonds, copper, uranium, and perhaps most significantly, coltan. The DRC has 65 percent of the world’s coltan deposits. This mineral is valuable for production of electronic devices from cell phones to video game consoles.
The way coltan reaches the market is very unsettling. The military, local militias and rebels are all involved in smuggling. Illicit profits fund these violent groups.