London — Miners across Africa are increasingly using one-time payments to settle disputes with governments, a trend that’s disturbing some investors. A $150m payment by Glencore’s Katanga Mining to the Democratic Republic of Congo’s (DRC) Gecamines earlier this month followed Freeport McMoRan’s separate $100m settlement with the state-owned company in January 2017. Last October, Barrick Gold proposed paying Tanzania $300m as part of efforts to negotiate a settlement for its majority-owned Acacia Mining. The shift, identified by the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative — which promotes good governance in the mining industry — comes as African nations seek redress from old contracts often perceived to favour international miners. While there’s no suggestion such settlements breach any rules, some investors are concerned that certain payments are poorly defined and fall at the boundaries of existing regulations. "We are nervous about bespoke deals," said Nick Stansbury, a fund...

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