The new Swiss technical assistance project on Public Expenditure and Financial Accountability Assessment requested by the Ministry of Finance was approved by the Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO) in January 2007.
SECO informed Trend that the purpose of the assessment is to provide the Government of Azerbaijan with an objective assessment of Azerbaijan's Public Finance Management systems in accordance with the PEFA Public Financial Management Performance Measurement Framework in order that it may form a better understanding of the relative strengths and weaknesses of those Public Finance Management (PFM) systems, assist in identifying those parts of the PFM systems most in need of reform, and thereafter enable it to formulate a PFM reform strategy aimed at strengthening the PFM systems in Azerbaijan and securing a more robust fiduciary environment. The Assessment will also feed into the Government's dialogue with its development partners.
The Ministry of Finance will be the primary recipient, counterpart and co-ordinator of the assessment within the Government. The Ministry of Finance agreed to undertake all necessary efforts, such as the establishment of a counterpart team in the Ministry to support the assessment process, providing guidance and necessary information to consultants, and to complete a self-assessment before May 2007 for smooth implementation of the project. The Final Assessment Paper will be disclosed to the public at the end of the project.
SECO in consultation with the PEFA secretariat and the World Bank already started the bidding process for the selection of an international consultant team. Launch of the Workshop on Assessment's methodology is expected in April 2007.