somalia:Financial Governance Committee Progress Report

Mareeg.com-Mogadishu, 23 July 2014: His Excellency, Hussein Abdi Halane, Minister of Finance of the Federal Government of Somalia commented today on the second Financial Governance Committee (FGC) progress report released on 15 June 2014 highlighting significant steps taken to improve management of Somalia’s public finances.

“The Financial Governance Plan allows the government and donor partners to focus on solving some of the most important issues facing Somalia, helping us to build a prosperous future,” said Minister of Finance, H.E. Hussein Abdi Halane. “We are making good progress against the Financial Governance Plan, although prompt support from donors is vital if we are to maintain momentum.”

Major achievements highlighted in the report include:

• Procurement Amendment Bill and Audit Bill: both bills have been endorsed by the Council of Ministers and have been submitted to Parliament for approval. When passed into law, these bills will provide critical foundations for honest financial governance that is in the interests of Somalia’s citizens.

• Financial statements: financial statements have been prepared by the Central Bank of Somalia and the Ministry of Finance, which demonstrate transparency and a basis for good governance of the institutions.

• Concession contracts: the FGC has now reviewed a total of six concession contracts, which provides the FGS with an understanding of weaknesses in current contracts and highlights risks that should be avoiding in the creation of future contracts.

Speaking on the report, the World Bank appointee to the FGC said, “While there is still a long way to go, progress against the Financial Governance Plan demonstrates that the Financial Governance Committee is able help drive important reforms forward. I hope that all donors with an interest in good governance in Somalia will accelerate their efforts to provide the capacity support that is both essential, and in some cases, delayed.”

The Financial Governance Committee brings together key Government officials and appointees of International Financial Institutions (IFIs) who oversee implementation of the recently launched Financial Governance Program (FGP).

The FGP is designed to strengthen public finance and central bank management and provide independent advice in key areas related to financial governance. The FGP thereby complements and strengthens government and donor efforts to build robust public finance management systems.

The program addresses the following areas of particular urgency and/or concern in Somali public financial management: the creation of a well-governed, functional Central Bank, the establishment of sound public revenue and expenditure management, the establishment of orderly public procurement and concession processes, and the effective and transparent repatriation of national assets.

The Financial Governance Committee (FGC) meets regularly in Mogadishu to monitor the overall progress of Somalia’s Financial Governance Program and advise the government on critical issues and areas of financial governance. The Committee is comprised of five members and one observer (from the IMF). Members include the Minister of Finance (Chair), H.E. Hussein Halane; the new Governor of the Central Bank, H.E. Bashir Issa; the President’s Senior Policy Adviser, Awes Hagi; the World Bank’s designated representative, Nigel Roberts; the African Development Bank’s designated representative, Ellias Ngalande; and the IMF’s designated observer, Ake Lonnberg.