President Buhari

The United States Department of State has said that Nigeria, among other countries, made no significant progress in fiscal transparency throughout 2018.

This was the conclusion of the U.S. Department of State 2019 Fiscal Transparency Report spanning January 1 – December 31, 2018, released on Thursday.

The report which assesses those that did not meet the minimum fiscal transparency requirements and indicates whether those governments made significant progress toward meeting the requirements during the review period of January 1 – December 31, 2018, said that Nigeria, among other countries, did not meet the minimum requirements.

The report said that for its purpose, “the minimum requirements of fiscal transparency include having key budget documents that are publicly available, substantially complete, and generally reliable.

“The review includes an assessment of the transparency of processes for awarding government contracts and licenses for natural resource extraction. Fiscal transparency is a critical element of effective public financial management, helps build market confidence, and underpins economic sustainability,” the report said.

“Fiscal transparency fosters greater government accountability by providing a window into government budgets for citizens, helping citizens hold their leadership accountable, and facilitating better-informed public debate.

“Annual reviews of the fiscal transparency of governments that receive U.S. assistance help ensure U.S. taxpayer funds are used appropriately and provide opportunities to dialogue with governments on the importance of fiscal transparency.

“Section 7031(b) of the FY 2019 SFOAA requires the Secretary of State to “update and strengthen” minimum requirements of fiscal transparency for each government receiving assistance appropriated by the Act as identified in the 2014 Fiscal Transparency Report. It further requires the Department to make or update any determination of “significant progress” or “no significant progress” in meeting the minimum requirements of fiscal transparency for each government that did not meet the minimum requirements. Through authority delegated from the Secretary in Delegation of Authority 245-2, the Deputy Secretary of State made those determinations for 2019

“The assessment helps to ensure that U.S. taxpayer funds are used appropriately and provide opportunities to dialogue with governments on the importance of fiscal transparency.”

The Department concluded that, of the 140 governments evaluated pursuant to the Act plus Equatorial Guinea, 67 did not meet the minimum requirements of fiscal transparency.

Of these 67, however, 13 governments made significant progress toward meeting the minimum requirements of fiscal transparency.

Nigeria is one of the countries that did not meet the minimum requirements for fiscal transparency.

The Department assessed the following governments as meeting the minimum requirements of fiscal transparency for 2019: Afghanistan, Albania, Argentina, Armenia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Botswana, Brazil, Bulgaria, Burkina Faso, Cabo Verde, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Côte d’Ivoire, Croatia, Czech Republic, El Salvador, Estonia, Fiji, Georgia, Ghana, Greece, Guatemala, Guyana, Honduras, Hungary, India, Indonesia, Israel, Jamaica, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kosovo, Kyrgyz Republic, Latvia, Lithuania, Malaysia, Malta, Marshall Islands, Mauritius, Mexico, Micronesia, Moldova, Mongolia, Montenegro, Morocco, Namibia, Nepal, North Macedonia (formerly Republic of Macedonia), Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Senegal, Serbia, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Timor-Leste, Tonga, Trinidad and Tobago, Tunisia, Turkey, Uganda, and Uruguay.

Others which did not meet the requirements include Nigeria, Algeria, Angola, Azerbaijan, Bahamas, Bahrain, Burma, Burundi, Cambodia, Cameroon among others.

 

Full report can be found accessed here