The IGF’s overarching objective is enhancing capacities to achieve sustainable development objectives through good governance in the mining sector. This effort is largely framed by its flagship Mining Policy Framework (MPF), which sets out concrete objectives and processes for good governance. Members are committed to reviewing and updating this tool on a regular basis.
The IGF is currently partnering with three organizations to conduct a comparative analysis of Sustainable Development Goals against the MPF. This builds off previous work done by the United Nations Development Program, the World Economic Forum, and the Columbia Center on Sustainable Investment. The completed report will be presented to members in October 2016 at IGF’s Annual General Assembly and will be used as the basis for a proposal to update the MPF.
Mining for Sustainable Development: the value of IGF's MPF Assessment
The framework was tabled over the course of the nineteenth session of the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development (CSD19) that was held in May 2011 in New York. It was presented as a compendium of best practices for governments to best deal with the full range of issues related to mining. Delegates to CSD19 recognized the work of the Forum, including the policy framework for the mining sector as a way to provide a systemic approach for developing mining in a way that promotes sustainable development.
As a non-binding policy guidance tool, the MPF lays out international best practice in these six key pillars of mining law and policy:
The Legal and Policy Environment
A mature, modern legislative regime provides clear lines of responsibility and accountability for governments and companies. Such a regime should provide the foundation of good governance and contribute to sustainable development in all aspects of social and economic life.
Financial Benefit Optimization
Taxes and royalty revenues derived from exploration, mine development and production should reflect the value to society of the resources mined. They should be collected and put to work in support of the sustainable development of the nation.
Socioeconomic Benefit Optimization
The conversion of natural capital into human capital holds the greatest promise for sustainable outcomes from mining activities. Maximizing the social and economic development contributions of mining with the host state, especially in developing countries, is a key goal of IGF members.
A mining operation that is considered consistent with sustainable development is one where planning for the environmental, social and economic transitions to mine closure must be undertaken throughout the entire life cycle of the mine.
Artisanal and Small-Scale Mining
Artisanal and small-scale mining is a complex and diversified sector that ranges from informal individual miners seeking to make a subsistence livelihood, to smallscale formal commercial mining entities that can produce minerals in a responsible way that respects local laws.
The management of the natural resource base within ecosystems is the ongoing responsibility of any society seeking to become more sustainable, and any company seeking to act responsibly.