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FISCAL OPENNESS ACCELERATOR PROJECT
Fiscal Transparency for Public Participation for Better Use of Public Resources

 WHAT IT IS? 

The International Budget Partnership (IBP, a GIFT Lead Steward) and GIFT have developed the Fiscal Openness Accelerator, a project to deepen work in improving transparency and enhancing public participation in fiscal policies. Eight GIFT government stewards and two government partners will be work together to pilot specific mechanisms of public participation along the budget cycle. The FOA is supported by the US Department of State and the OGP Multi-Donor Trust Fund managed by the World Bank.

The objective of the project is to build the technical capacity of a number of selected governments to improve their fiscal transparency and to implement mechanisms for public participation in the elaboration of fiscal policies, while providing a dialogue between civil society and public finance authorities on the use of public resources.

International experts and governments are increasingly realizing that public participation and transparency are mutually reinforcing and need to be advanced together as key components of improved government decision making and accountability. However, only reforms that support both expanded fiscal transparency and enhanced opportunities for public engagement in budgeting can ensure that individual gains on fiscal transparency and public participation buttress each other.

To help bridge the gap between the demand for and the resources available to support the development of fiscal transparency and public participation mechanisms, IBP and GIFT have developed the Fiscal Openness Accelerator, a project that will deepen work in improving transparency and enhancing public participation in fiscal policies in some countries in Africa, such as Benin, Liberia, Nigeria, Senegal, and South Africa, with the support of the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Economic and Business Affairs. Other governments, such as the budget office’s representatives from Colombia, the Dominican Republic, Indonesia, Mexico and the Philippines have also been part of a fruitful conversation since 2019 and have provided extremely valuable information for the FOA project. More recently, additional ministries of finance have also expressed interest in joining these efforts. This confirms that there is a growing community that shares the commitment to promoting public participation with an impact on public finances.

 SCOPE OF WORK 

The US government is financing the pilots for five African countries (Benin, Liberia, Nigeria, Senegal, South Africa) and the GIFT network is seeking additional funds to include Colombia, the Dominican Republic, Indonesia, Mexico and the Philippines in a simultaneous effort.

Full scope of the project  EnglishFrançais

 WHAT WE SEEK TO ACHIEVE 

Support governments in the development of participation mechanisms that can help their governments engage in budget processes that better reflect the inputs and needs of citizens. During the development we will document the process to evaluate the impact and disseminate good practices and lessons learned.

Additionally, with the storytelling we seek to create better engagement and visibility of the pilots. The storytelling will encourage other government innovators to take the same path and will allow them to have a glimpse of the process the need to undergo.

Memorandums of understanding

• Memorandum of understanding between IBP, GIFT, and the Ministry of Finance and Development Planning of the Republic of Liberia – PDF

• Memorandum of understanding between IBP, GIFT, and the National Treasury of the Republic of South Africa – PDF

• Memorandum of understanding between IBP, GIFT, and the Ministry of Finance, Budget and National Planning of Nigeria – PDF

• Memorandum of understanding between IBP, GIFT, and the Ministry of Finance and Budget of Senegal – PDF

Meetings’ materials

March 2-3, 2020.

Launching meeting of the IBP/GIFT public participation pilot project. The kick-off meeting was hosted by the National Treasury of South Africa, a leading and remarkable institution, and member of the GIFT network.

Four mechanisms of public participation for practical discussion

• Public Participation in Budgeting – Social Accountability Mechanisms to promote transparency & accountability in budgets and expenditure
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• Cascais Participatory Budgeting, Portugal
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• A representative mechanism for national budget participation
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• Public Policy Councils
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Materials used during the workshop

• FOA Kick-off Meeting Workbook
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• FOA Kick-off Meeting by Vivek Ramkumar and Juan Pablo Guerrero – PPT

• Senegal IMF’s Fiscal Transparency Evaluation – PDF

• Report of the FOA Kick-off Meeting
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• Indicators for fiscal transparency by Lorena Rivero from GIFT – PPT

• Interview with Daniel Avelino, Inclusiveness in participatory budgeting – Video

• Interview with Daniel Avelino, Inclusive, meaningful and sustainable aspects of public councils – Video

• Interview with Jason Lakin – Video