The UK will provide £15m over three years to support the reform of the public finance in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
The overall objective of this programme is the more effective use of public resources to support pro-poor service delivery.It aims to support the DRC government’s efforts to manage its resources with more efficiency, effectiveness and transparency to achieve poverty reduction and to deliver improved basic services such as education, infrastructures, health, to the benefit of the Congolese people. UK aid will contribute £14m to a multi-donor trust fund to support public financial management reform and accountability at central and provincial levels; and £1m to a flexible fund managed directly by DFID,to provide a mechanism to react quickly to reform opportunities.
The multi-donor trust fund is managed by the World Bank, who also contributes $5m and Belgium will add €4m in the future. The programme will work at national level, and in three provinces: Equateur, Kasaï Oriental and North Kivu. This programme aims at enhancing credibility of the DRC government’s budget, improving revenue collection at provincial level as well as increasing budget transparency and citizen participation in the budget process. It is aligned with DRC government’s priorities, with a strong focus on results, flexibility and a feedback look which should allow a focus on areas where actual progress can be made.
Since 2010, the government has taken some steps to manage the national budget in a more transparent and effective way. It has launched the bancarisation process, it has invited civil society to participate to the preparation of the budget, it has passed laws to reform the taxation system, and it has created an agency in charge of controlling public procurement. Furthermore, the DRC government and donors involved in public finance reform have set up the Cadre de Concertation, a framework for coordination and dialogue, which is meeting for the third time today. It aims to review progress in reform implementation and results every three months. This review is to be based on the Plan d’ActionPrioritaire for budget reform designed by Government.
However, the multiplicity of donor projects in public finance management sector leads to a risk of duplication and significanttransaction costs. Committed to improve donor coordination in the DRC, the UK established the multi-donor trust fund with the aim to progressively bring of all donors into one single funding mechanism for the sector.