It focuses on the commodities boom that ran from 2004-2008, and the bust that began in 2008, which appears, at the time of writing, early 2009, to be far from its conclusion. Field research conducted in November 2008 revealed that the booms and busts of commodity markets and the mining industry have presented not only severe challenges for natural resource governance in Kolwezi, but opportunities for reform. Yet, as has been well documented, the modern Congolese state exhibits weak capacity to manage any aspects of the country’s mineral wealth. It remains dangerously ill-equipped to respond to either the opportunities or the challenges.
SAIIA sincerely thanks those who acted as peer reviewers for this paper.