The working paper ‘Budget Institutions and Fiscal Performance in Low-Income Countries’ published in March by the International Monetary Fund constructs a new index that allows for benchmarking against the performance of middle-income countries, across regions, and according to different institutional arrangements that deliver good fiscal performance .
‘Further strengthening transparency and comprehensiveness of the budget process in low-income countries’ is an important step to ensuring government accountability and prevent leakage of public funds, increase efficiency of scarce public resources, and improve the prospects of maintaining fiscal stability and meeting social development needs. This includes transparency of information about aid, particularly in countries where this constitutes a high proportion of their income. Preliminary results from the econometric analysis suggest that well developed procedures for external monitoring and audit of the budget are likely to be more effective than those which rely on government self-monitoring, which is why Publish What You Fund want donors to lead the way in improving public finance systems.
To read the paper, go here.