In mid-August 2013, a CABRI and IBP (International Budget Partnership) team spent a week in Kinshasa. The team worked in close collaboration with the DRC Ministry of Budget and comprised senior budget officials from the Central African Republic, Burkina Faso and Mali, as well as representatives of civil society from the DRC and Mali, and was supported by two representatives from the Budget Strengthening Initiative.
The joint study is part of a three year project with the IBP. Besides the review of budget transparency in the DRC, reviews will also be undertaken in Kenya and two more CABRI countries to define feasible objectives and plans for implementing country-specific transparency reforms that are drawn from African experiences. The reviews will also aim to assist countries achieve these goals.
The workshop organised for the launch of this project was held in Accra, in November 2012 and included budget officials and civil society representatives from Liberia, Kenya, Ghana, Central African Republic, Mali and South Africa.
The DRC results on the Open Budget Index, which increased from 1 in 2006, to 6 in 2008 and then to 18 in 2012, deserve recognition. Our findings during the week would suggest that further progress has been made since the OBI 2012 study. We can therefore expect the DRC to achieve a higher score at the next OBI study which will be carried out in 2014.
The table below is a draft summary of the status of the eight key budget documents produced by the DRC that were examined during the study week. The main areas of progress achieved since the 2012 Open Budget Survey comprise the Pre-Budget Statement (PBS), the Citizens’ Budget, and the Year-end Report.