The feedback portal, open to all its stakeholders on its governance interventions will help the bank inform all stakeholders on its proposed governance strategic directions for 2014-2018 and to receive feedback on their expectations on its future governance interventions.
“We welcome feedback on whether our “Governance Strategic Direction and Action Plan for 2014-2018” (GAP II) identifies the key governance challenges confronting Africa and whether the three proposed strategic pillars and associated operational activities will be adequate to address them”, said Patricia Laverley, GAP II task manager.
The stakeholders can also suggest ways in which GAP II can better complement and reinforce the governance work of other development partners in Africa and how they can work together to leverage additional resources for the continent’s development.
“The vision of AfDB is that Africa is governed by transparent, accountable and responsive governments with strong institutions that are capable of driving inclusive and sustainable growth,” said Lobe Ndoumbe, Governance and Financial management Director, at the launch of the web consultation.
AfDB’s new governance strategy is based on the AfDB Group’s Strategy for 2013-2022 in which governance and accountability are among the core operational priorities, to be mainstreamed across the Bank.
AfDB’s “Governance Strategic Direction and Action Plan 2014-2018” (GAP II) is built on three objectives. It seeks to strengthen governments’ capacity for transparent and accountable use of public resources and citizens’ ability to hold governments to account. It also seeks to improve outcomes in the sectors and citizen’s ability to monitor them. It also aims at promoting a business enabling environment which supports Africa’s socio-economic transformation, job creation and financial inclusion. The fight against corruption in both the public and private sectors will prevail in all its operations.
Going forward, AfDB’s governance work will build on the achievements of its first “Governance Strategic Direction and Action Plan (GAP I)” for 2008-2012. GAP II will deepen AfDB’s support to public financial management and business environment. It will also increase its support to the governance of key sectors such as natural resource management and infrastructure. Moreover, during 2014-2018, GAP II will deepen AfDB’s diagnostic works to improve programming and policy dialogue for greater impact and delivery of results.
The “Governance Strategic Direction and Action Plan 2008-2012” (GAP I) provided the overall direction for the AfDB’s governance work in African countries. The core areas of focus were on public financial management and business environment, implemented at country, sector and regional levels.
In countries where AfDB Group provided support, most governance indicators showed improvements. According to the “Development Effectiveness Review on Governance”, published in 2012, across the 14 countries where the African Development Bank has invested in revenue systems, tax revenue has risen dramatically, from 10.5% to 14.7% of GDP, while tax rates for business have declined, from 94% of commercial profits to 54%.
The results flagged in the “Development Effectiveness Review on Governance” also suggest major improvements in the business environment as a result of the Bank’s assistance. Across the 18 countries where the Bank is providing this support, the time required to start a business reduced from 43 days in 2005 to only 23 days in 2011.
The time devoted by business to the payment of taxes reduced by 10% to 254 hours per year, while the average time required to enforce a contract fell by 50 days. These business friendly measures are part of the reason why net foreign direct investment has increased substantially from 4% to 6% of GDP across these countries; although a buoyant natural resource sector has also contributed.