Nick Bates is a Senior Consultant at RCS and leads RCS’s public policy unit. Nick has worked as a Senior Political Analyst over the last ten years on the African Great Lakes region and the Horn of Africa for DFID. He has specialised experience with issues of cross-border trade and natural resource development, for which he has earned the respect of many of his peers in the region and in the international community. With RCS he works at the forefront of UK and OECD policy development in the mining sector, as well as donor co-ordination efforts. His deep understanding of the complexities of the issue of conflict minerals and his wise counsel made him the go-to person for many working in this field. He has also assisted multi-national corporations, like AngloGold Ashanti with their contextual understanding of the DRC and the wider Great Lakes region. Nick has just retired from being a British civil servant, with 27 years as a diplomat serving in Geneva, Egypt, Oman, Jamaica and Uganda, and the last ten years in DFID. His work over these years has been reporting on the political, conflict and political economy dynamics on the basis of sound research and analysis. He is proficient in English and French.