There is now a growing acceptance of the requirement for indigenous peoples’ Free Prior Informed Consent (FPIC) in many industries, including the extractive industries. This has been reflected by its incorporation into policies of an increasing number of mining companies, although admittedly sometimes in a more diluted form. As the need for FPIC is introduced into state law, and made a requirement of financing, companies are increasingly struggling with how to implement FPIC.
Yet, for indigenous peoples it is clear that their right to give or withhold FPIC should be seen in a context of them as rights-holders, rather than just yet another stake-holder. Therefore, there seemed to be a need for research to act as a basis for constructing a common ground with regard to the requirement for indigenous peoples’ FPIC.
The report, Making Free Prior & Informed Consent a Reality: Indigenous Peoples and the Extractive Sector seeks to do just that. Authored by Cathal Doyle and Jill Carino, it advocates for multinational mining companies, the investor community, and state actors to understand the importance of the FPIC principle from ethical, sustainability and economic perspectives. Fundamentally it argues that it is essential to understand FPIC from an indigenous peoples’ rights-based perspective in order to effectively implement it in a manner which is in accordance with indigenous peoples’ exercising their right to self-determination.
The report can be viewed at: http://www.piplinks.org/report%3A-making-free-prior-%2526amp%3B-informed-consent-reality-indigenous-peoples-and-extractive-sector (along with an extract of the conclusions and recommendations, together with a Word version of a Spanish translation of the extract).