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Corruption and conflict

posted on 2023-06-08, 22:37 authored by Emanuela OrlandoEmanuela Orlando
It is only relatively recently that the problem of widespread corruption and violent conflicts related to the access, exploitation and management of natural resources, has become the subject of attention under international law. The relationship between natural resource endowments and a country’s economic development had usually been framed in positive terms, with emphasis on the high revenue that exploitation of these resources could potentially generate. Over the last few decades, the situation of poverty, political instability and violent conflicts that affect many resource-rich countries in Africa, Latin America and other parts of the developing world has started to shake the optimistic equation between natural resource abundance and economic growth. In this light, this chapter examines the responses thus far available in international law to address the challenges of conflicts and corruption in the field of natural resources. The chapter consists of two main part. The first part focuses on the international anti-corruption instruments and critically discuss their application to the specific sector of natural resources. The second part addresses from an international law perspective the relationship between scarcity and/or abundance of natural resources and the escalation of violent conflicts in developing countries. The analysis focuses particularly on the role of the Security Council Resolutions and critically examines their effectiveness, including from an environmental law perspective.


Publication status

  • Published

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  • Accepted version


Edward Elgar



Book title

Research Handbook on International Law and Natural Resources

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  • Law Publications

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Peer reviewed?

  • Yes

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