Exploitation of the poorest countries has always driven colonialism. Of all the continents, Africa is largely the most exploited in the world. Its continuous internal conflicts, the unstable governments and human conditions still make African countries a breeding ground for foreign-owned companies.

Extremely rich in raw materials and scarce and strategic resources, Africa  is overall rich in oil. After the “blood diamonds”, the last energy crisis moved the attention on the availability of oil and natural gas. Possibly, at the lowest price. In the world ranking of oil production, almost all the first fifteen positions are occupied by developing countries. Nigeria is the 13th and the first producer in Africa, followed by Angola that, for instance, is the 15th.

Eni reviewed recently the world oil and gas reserves noting a positive trend for new non-conventional and offshore fields, as the “shale-gas”. Deep water research are also increasing. Especially in Africa, where Eni – the first company in Africa for the exploitation of raw materials – has strengthened its economic efforts in the last years.

In 2013, an Amnesty International reported the operating of oil companies, especially Agip and Shell, in the Niger Delta. As the International Organization said, this is the only place of the world in which companies admit their responsibility in pollution and, at the same time, they reject it. The Niger Delta is the only place in the world that admit this behaviour.

Against this, every year right in Nigeria, it is lost about the 5% of the oil production.

In the Amnesty’s Report, companies accuse local population of their losses. A way to get out of paying a compensation for what is one of the greatest damage perpetrated today to the ecosystem.

Locals are actually responsible in part for thefts or sabotage. Because they really go to the pipelines with their tanks and they really die burned in these desperate attempts.

This because only few African countries process their own raw materials. From Nigeria to Mozambico – where Eni have found a giant natural gas field – and from petroleum to platinum – the scramble for Africa’s resources has often caused more problems than prosperity. Much of the profits from resource exploitation leave the continent entirely because of foreign-owned companies which pay low rates of tax. All this meanwhile people live on a few dollars per day.

Africa has been recently identified as the “Alpha” continent – as that continent which will give much more return, in future investments, than risks.

It is not quite as certain the opposite.