US unveils Somalia's fiscal transparency report

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WASHINGTON, US - The US has unveiled Somalia's fiscal transparency report for 2021 which is usually an audit of government to government projects, giving a clear picture of how resources especially donor funds are used.

During the review period, the US government published its enacted budget and end-of-year report online within a reasonable period of time. Information on external debt obligations was published on the Ministry of Finance’s website, the US said in a statement.

Budget documents within the period under review were completed, thus giving Washington easy time to evaluate the spending by the Somali government which largely relies on the West for financial support.

"Some ministries may be maintaining off-budget accounts not subject to audit or oversight," Washington noted.  "Actual revenues and expenditures may have deviated from projections, but the government issued a revised supplemental budget, although periodic budget execution reports were delayed."

"The supreme audit institution produced a publicly available review of the government’s accounts. The supreme audit institution does not meet international standards of independence," it said.

The government partially specified in law procedures for awarding natural resource concessions, but there is not enough information available to determine whether or not they were followed in practice. 

Basic information on natural resource extraction awards was not publicly available. Somalia’s fiscal transparency would be improved.

As part of improvement, the US said Somalia should start eliminating off-budget accounts or subjecting them to adequate oversight and audit and by ensuring the supreme audit institution meets international standards of independence.

Further, it noted, Mogadishu administration should fully specify in law procedures for awarding natural resource concessions and by awarding natural resource extraction contracts and licenses in a manner consistent with law or regulation; and making basic information on all such awards publicly available.

GAROWE ONLINE

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