Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs
May 21, 2012


G8 and Deauville partner countries will take a range of specific actions to strengthen good governance practices in transition countries. These initiatives are designed to foster rule of law, enhance citizen confidence in democratic institutions and combat impunity, which are essential to attract investment and foster local economic development and job creation. The interventions below highlight steps for the G8 and Deauville partner countries to embark upon to increase the transparency in government institutions, foster government-citizen dialogue, promote greater domestic resource mobilization, combat corruption, and enhance integrity in public procurement. More open governments and anticorruption reforms will facilitate a more enabling business environment in support of better market access, more foreign investment and less corruption. These factors, in turn, will serve to maximize growth.

Specific actions to promote open governance will include:

  • The Partnership will establish a network of contacts across the G8, transition countries, and regional partner countries who will serve as experts on open governance and anti-corruption issues.
  • Achieving Open Government Partnership Eligibility: The Open Government Partnership (OGP) is a diverse coalition of governments who have pledged to embrace a set of high-level open government principles, pledge country-specific commitments for putting the principles into practice and invite civil society organizations to assess their individual and collective progress going forward. Reform countries have agreed to consider a series of tailored actions to facilitate OGP membership in coordination with the OGP Steering Committee. The OECD MENA Initiative on Governance and Investment for Development will work in close collaboration with the OGP Steering Committee to help interested countries achieve this goal. Beyond membership, Deauville partner countries will reaffirm their commitment to fully implement OGP principles. As an OGP member, Jordan will work to strengthen its OGP action plan in cooperation with the OECD program. Tunisia, Morocco, Libya and Egypt will work with the MENA-OECD Governance Programme to apply open governance principles, which will enhance the potential for OGP eligibility and future membership.
  • Jordan is commended for its recent accession into OGP. Jordan will work with the OECD to identify areas to support Jordan’s implementation of its OGP action plan. (Implementation: Work will proceed over the next nine months.)
  • Tunisia only needs one point to qualify for the OGP. We commend its efforts thus far. To finalize its eligibility, Tunisia has agreed to work with the OECD to develop country-specific reviews on its current achievements and the remaining gaps to open governance. It will draft an implementation plan with recommendations on how to strengthen government-citizen dialogue in public policy-making at all levels of government, organize capacity building activities and provide policy implementation support to facilitate knowledge transfer and the long term sustainability of these initiatives. Tunisia will also participate in OECD-led policy dialogues at the national and regional level. (Implementation: Work will begin as soon as possible and proceed for 18 months.)
  • Morocco has agreed to work with the OECD to develop country-specific reviews on its current achievements and the remaining gaps to open governance. It will draft an implementation plan with recommendations on how to strengthen government-citizen dialogue in public policy-making at all levels of government, organize capacity building activities and provide policy implementation support to facilitate knowledge transfer and the long term sustainability of these initiatives. Morocco will also participate in OECD-led policy dialogues at the national and regional level. (Implementation: Work will proceed over the next 18 months.)
  • Libya has agreed to work with the OECD to develop country-specific reviews on current achievements and remaining gaps to open governance. It will draft an implementation plan with recommendations on how to strengthen government citizen dialogue and in public policy-making at all levels of government, organize capacity building activities and provide policy implementation support to facilitate knowledge transfer and the long term sustainability of these initiatives. Libya will also participate in OECD-led policy dialogues at the national and regional level. Libya’s program will have a greater focus on capacity building, as identified by the Libyan government. (Implementation: Work will begin in approximately nine months and proceed for one year.)
  • Egypt has agreed to work with the OECD to develop country-specific reviews on the current achievements and remaining gaps to open governance. It will draft an implementation plan with recommendations on how to strengthen government-citizen dialogue in public policy-making at all levels of government, organize capacity building activities and provide policy implementation support to facilitate knowledge transfer and the long term sustainability of these initiatives. Egypt will also participate in OECD-led policy dialogues at the national and regional level. Egypt’s program will have a greater focus on capacity building, as identified by the Egyptian government. (Implementation: Work will begin in approximately nine months and proceed for one year.)
  • Strengthening National Statistics Systems: The OECD will convene in June an ad hoc working group – including Germany, France, Turkey, the EU, Tunisia, Egypt, Jordan, Italy, the United Kingdom and any other interested partners – to develop proposals for strengthening the collection and publication of official statistics in transition countries. This working group, acting in cooperation with the World Bank, will:
  • Take stock of existing statistical information systems in transition countries and identify the most pressing gaps that need to be addressed. Potential work streams could include: the development of basic statistical tools to improve national accounts, business and taxation statistics or conducting simple labor force and consumer price index surveys.
  • Assist transition countries to build independent and technically reliable national statistics systems oriented, inter alia, towards an analysis of implementation of the MDGs thus helping national governments to optimize socio-economic policies.
  • Facilitate bilateral technical assistance that statistical offices of G8 countries may wish to organize with MENA countries.
  • Depending upon the need, periodically review the projections and forecasts for transition countries, drawing upon regional economic outlooks and other regional surveys.
  • Gather governance indicators in order to integrate, in addition to Egypt, all DP countries into the OECD Governments at a Glance publication.
  • Make proposals to increase open access to government-held data.
  • The European Union, together with the Council of Europe, will continue to support good governance, preventing corruption and money laundering in the Southern Mediterranean. The EU will continue to promote evidence-based policy-making and to foster the use of robust statistical data, including through the MEDSTAT Program.
  • The OECD and the Italian School of Public Administration will implement capacity building activities in the area of good governance in the new Training Center jointly established in Caserta. The Center will operate within the framework of the MENA-OECD Governance Programme.
  • Arab Administrative Development Organization (ARADO) will work with the OECD, and other international organizations to develop a number of joint activities to serve the MENA region under the umbrella of the Deauville Partnership by conducting a number of research projects and professional conferences and meetings over the next two years, including in the areas of administrative development, good governance, open government and social media, transparency and accountability, and gender issues.
  • Under its mandate to promote transparency and integrity in the public sector and has been engaged in a number of projects with OECD, UNDP, UNODC, and other international institutions in building capacity of government officials, oversight organizations, parliamentarians in Egypt and other Arab countries, the Ministry of State for Administrative Development in Egypt will explore opportunities to build the capacity of elected government officials in areas related to fighting corruption and transparency.
  • Building upon Best Practices in Economic Governance: To facilitate greater knowledge sharing of best practices in open governance, domestic revenue mobilization and public financial management, transition countries will consider sending appropriate participants to the following knowledge sharing events:
  • MENA Conference on “Better Governance & Fair Taxation”: The International Tax Dialogue (ITD) – a coalition of international organizations including CIAT ( Inter-American Centre of Tax Administration), the European Commission, International Monetary Fund (IMF), Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), OECD, and World Bank - is organizing a knowledge sharing event entitled “ Better Governance & Fair Taxation” in Tunis on May 30-31. Support for the conference is being provided by the U.S. Domestic Finance for Development (DF4D) Initiative. The conference will be hosted by the Tunisian Ministry of Finance. This conference will explore good practices on how open governance and fair tax systems can contribute to more engaged citizens, confident businesses and sustainable and progressive states. All transition and Deauville partner countries will be encouraged to present on their plans to improve open governance and fair tax systems in the region. The key deliverables for this conference will include:
  • Transition country updates on OGP country action plans;
  • Official launch of the OECD’s Open Governance Project with joint commitments from transition countries to continue progress towards OGP eligibility; and
  • Official launch of a Deauville Fiscal Management Advisory Corps. (See anticorruption work stream for more details.)
  • Global Forum on Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes: The Global Forum’s next meeting will be in South Africa in October 2012. The key deliverables for this forum will include:
  • Adopting another 10 peer review reports and 2 supplemental follow-up reports that assess jurisdictions’ compliance with the international standards for transparency and exchange of information for tax purposes;
  • Welcoming a number of new member jurisdictions, including Tunisia, that recently committed to implementing the international standards; and
  • Following-up on progress made in implementing the Phase 2 Peer Reviews, which assess the extent to which jurisdictions have effectively implemented the international standards in practice.

Specific actions to mitigate corruption will include:

  • Strengthening Public Financial Management Capacities through a Deauville Fiscal Management Advisory Corps: The U.S. Domestic Finance for Development (DF4D) initiative, the Financial Services Volunteer Corps (FSVC) and the OECD’s Centre for Tax Policy and Administration have agreed to partner with the Deauville Partnership to recruit a cadre of international volunteer experts from the public and private sectors to provide public financial management-related technical assistance to regional tax administrators, auditors, customs officials, and other public officials. The primary objectives of this volunteer corps will be to train public servants on how to: 1) better protect public finances from fraud and illicit financial flows; and 2) raise the capacity of reforming countries to better generate and channel domestic revenues towards public investments that facilitate enabling business environments. This volunteer service corps seeks to complement existing programs by filling gaps in G8 bilateral assistance. It also seeks to establish an outlet where reforming countries can access speedy training or advisory services for a specific project or objective in support of G8 Deauville Open Governance initiatives. Technical assistance will be country-specific and available upon request for Libya, Tunisia, Egypt, Morocco and Jordan. G8 and Deauville partners will provide in-kind or financial contributions to this program. (Implementation: June 2012-May 2014)
  • Setting the Regulatory Framework to Prevent Corruption: Transition countries underline their continued commitment to undertake anti-corruption measures. Within the context of their membership in existing treaties, G8 members, partner countries, and international organizations will provide technical assistance related to adopting the following best practices and recommendations.
  • Transition countries will pursue completion UNCAC reviews in a participatory and transparent fashion (i.e., with site visits, nongovernmental input, and publication of the report). Transition countries will examine the adoption or enhancement of systems on disclosure of assets of appropriate officials, on whistleblower protection, and on conflicts of interest, ensuring that they are consistent with international best practices and applied in practice.
  • G8 members will encourage partner countries to monitor and combat bribery by businesses and persons under their jurisdiction and to more actively engage with the OECD including with regards to standards in the Convention on Combating Bribery of Foreign Public Officials in International Business Transactions. G8 members that are not parties to the UNCAC accede as soon as possible.
  • Transition countries and regional partner countries will aim to join and participate actively in the Arab Anti-corruption and Integrity Network and UNDP’s Anti-corruption and Integrity for the Arab Countries initiative, a more comprehensive project that includes support to the Network as one of its workstreams. They will encourage expert, private sector and NGO participation in the Network’s activities. Regional partner countries will be encouraged to provide support (financial and/or in-kind) of some $1 million yearly to this initiative.

Specific actions to strengthen public procurement will include:

  • Adopting Best Practices in Public Procurement: Transition countries will consider the adoption and implementation of the OECD Principles for Enhancing Integrity in Public Procurement. Transition countries will discuss the formation of a network of procurement officials to assess compliance with the OECD's related principles against a monitoring survey. G8 members, partner countries, and international organizations will provide technical assistance related to adopting the following best practices and implementing the recommendations below.
  • Partner countries and international organizations will support transition country participation in World Bank self-assessments and participation in OECD peer reviews of procurement procedures to build on international good practice.
  • With World Bank and African Development Bank guidance, Tunisia will undergo a self-assessment of its government procurement system from April-June 2012. Other transitions countries are recommended to undertake similar self-assessments.
  • Jordan will continue its efforts to pursue membership in the Government Procurement Agreement (GPA) of the World Trade Organization (WTO). Jordan has already begun GPA accession negotiations, and has indicated its intent to complete its accession by end- 2012. The G8 members invite Morocco to examine the possibility of acceding to the GPA, already having undertaken government procurement obligations in its bilateral FTA with the United States.

Reporting

All Partner countries will keep the Presidency and one another well informed, on their progress in implementing the specific actions agreed to above and will plan to take stock of the progress of the Deauville partnership, coordinated by the Presidency, by September 1, 2012.