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DUSHANBE (TCA) — In support of Tajikistan’s efforts to strengthen the efficiency, accountability, and transparency of public expenditure, especially critical in the current COVID-19 context, the World Bank’s Board of Executive Directors on December 2 approved $6 million in additional financing for the Public Finance Management Modernization Project II (PFMMP-II). The project financing was provided in the form of a grant from the International Development Association (IDA).

“A strong public financial management system underpins a government’s ability to provide quality services to citizens and channel resources efficiently and effectively to priority needs, such as health, education, and poverty reduction,” said Jan-Peter Olters, World Bank Country Manager for Tajikistan. “Especially in light of the crisis-induced reduction of budgetary revenues, a strong PFM system is indispensable as policy instrument to distribute scarce resources effectively and allow policy-makers and citizens to receive full information on how budgetary resources are used to respond to growing needs.”

Tajikistan’s National Development Strategy 2030 (NDS 2030) seeks to create an effective public administration system as a basis for sustainable economic development and poverty reduction. The ongoing Public Finance Management Modernization Project II, launched in 2016 with financing from IDA and DfID, is supporting this priority in many ways.

For example, the project helped to strengthen the capacity of the Chamber of Accounts to carry out audits of state agencies and institutions. It introduced electronic human resources and payroll systems for fair and transparent civil service recruitment and pay, and supported the development of an e-government roadmap to lay the foundation for expanding e-services for the population. The roadmap is currently under review by the Government of Tajikistan.

Importantly, the project is supporting the implementation of e-procurement and development of a regulatory and institutional framework for public procurement. These efforts will ensure that state procurement is done in an open and competitive basis and that the information on awarded contracts is available to public—thereby contributing to efforts to increase the quality of goods and services tendered by Government, and to reduce their cost. The project has supported the modernization of automated financial management systems to strengthen the budget planning, budget execution, treasury, accounting and financial reporting functions across government entities. It will also strengthen accounting and financial reporting capacities of selected state-owned enterprises.

With additional financing approved on December 2, the project will: 1) strengthen the capacity of selected State Owned Enterprises to comply with International Financial Reporting Standards and good corporate governance practices; 2) strengthen the regulatory and institutional framework for public procurement and support implementation of an e-procurement system, as well as build related capacity for entities working on public procurement ; 3) improve the management of public investment and public-private partnership operations by strengthening the standards, policies, oversight and monitoring of these operations; and 4) strengthen internal audit of budget organizations. The goal is to help Tajikistan improve the efficiency and effectiveness of its public investments to attain more accelerated, export-led growth.

The project is implemented by the Ministry of Finance, the State Agency for Public Procurement, the Executive Office of the President, Civil Service Agency and the Chamber of Accounts, and the project will close in 2024.

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