CIPFA welcomes UN declaration on aid effectiveness


The Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy (CIPFA) has welcomed a crucial section of the UN Busan Partnership declaration on aid effectiveness which includes a pledge to improve public financial management, transparency and accountability.

Ministers from across the globe met in Busan, South Korea this week for the Fourth High Level Forum on Aid Effectiveness. The delegates reviewed global progress in improving the impact and value for money of development aid and adopted a declaration for effective development cooperation.

The declaration includes a pledge to work to establish transparent public financial management systems and to make better use of this information in decision-making and promoting accountability.

This step forward in transparency and accountability complements CIPFA’s recent initiative which calls for a coordinated and concerted global effort to improve reporting, auditing and public financial management practices by governments around the world.

Steve Freer, Chief Executive of CIPFA, said

“This is a great step forward in international cooperation and perfectly complements the launch of our international prospectus, Fixing the Foundations, which aims to improve public financial management in both developing and developed countries around the world.

“The importance of high quality public financial management worldwide has received unprecedented attention in the wake of the sovereign debt crisis. Initiatives like the Busan declaration and Fixing the Foundations seek to harness this impetus to drive up standards and prevent future crises from occurring.”

The signing of the Busan declaration occurs in the same week that the International Federation of Accountants (IFAC) signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the International Donor Community to improve international cooperation, increase the capacity of professional accountancy organisations and improve the quality of financial management systems in emerging economies.




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Notes to editors

  • The section of the declaration that relates to public financial management:

“We will work to improve the availability and public accessibility of information on development cooperation and other development resources, building on our respective commitments in this area. To this end, we will:

a) Make the full range of information on publicly funded development activities, their financing, terms and conditions, and contribution to development results, publicly available subject to legitimate concerns about commercially sensitive information.

b) Focus, at the country level, on establishing transparent public financial management and aid information management systems, and strengthen the capacities of all relevant stakeholders to make better use of this information in decision-¬‐making and to promote accountability.

c) Implement a common, open standard for electronic publication of timely, comprehensive and forward-¬‐looking information on resources provided through development co-operation, taking into account the statistical reporting of the OECD-¬‐DAC and the complementary efforts of the International Aid Transparency Initiative and others. This standard must meet the information needs of developing countries and non-¬‐state actors, consistent with national requirements. We will agree on this standard and publish our respective schedules to implement it by December 2012, with the aim of implementing it fully by December 2015.”

  • CIPFA argues that weak public financial management is regrettably commonplace in countries at all stages of development. As a result, governments currently grappling with sovereign debt issues, emergency budgets, fiscal stimulation measures, and austerity programmes are often making decisions of strategic long-term significance based on incomplete, inaccurate and/or out-of-date financial information. CIPFA is calling for a co-ordinated and concerted global effort as the only way to address these issues at the scale and pace required to avert further financial failures in years to come.



CIPFA, the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy, is the professional body for people in public finance. As the world’s only professional accountancy body to specialise in public services, CIPFA’s portfolio of qualifications are the foundation for a career in public finance. We also champion high performance in public services, translating our experience and insight into clear advice and practical services. Globally, CIPFA shows the way in public finance by standing up for sound public financial management and good governance.