Summary of Busan Outcome Statement and its application in Cambodia


As Cambodia reflects on the Busan High-level Forum and looks forward to applying the commitments made there to our own national context and development priorities, there are perhaps 5 principal points to note that are based directly on the Busan Partnership for Effective Development Cooperation statement:


1. The Busan document emphasises the need to look beyond aid in order to identify a more holistic and effective strategy for promoting national development.


Identifying Government's own revenues, the role of state and non-state actors, regional and global integration as the drivers of sustainable and inclusive growth (para 28) locates the Busan agreement in a broader development context that focuses on results. Aid is seen as a means to catalyse and optimize the contributions of a wider range of actors, actions and resources (para 9, 28).


2. A broader global and country partnership is proposed as a means to consolidate progress and coordinate diverse actors around a set of common principles.


Busan therefore commits to building on progress in Paris and Accra while confirming the important roles of all actors, noting explicitly the contributions to be made by aid-providing partners from the South (para 30/31), the private sector (para 32) and civil society (para 22). A common set of principles (para 8) is elaborated (para 11) to guide this partnership focusing on: ownership; results; inclusive partnerships; and transparency and mutual accountability. Acknowledging the diverse experience, resources, interests and competencies of those engaged in the development process – and accommodating this diversity and difference – was central to the negotiation of the Busan document. It is referenced in particular in para 2 (South-South providers apply agreed principles and actions on a voluntary basis) as well as in paras 7, 14, 16.


3. It is necessary to recognise and emphasise country context in order to achieve sustainable development results.


The document moves beyond global norms and shared principles to emphasise the importance of adapting to country context and national priorities. The basic framework for contextualization is to develop a common results framework (para 18b) and mutual assessments of progress (18d), similar to the JMI and sector monitoring that currently takes place. Country systems (paras 19, 29) are assigned a higher profile than in Accra – they are to be used as the default option – and can be promoted through the application of joint approaches to assessment (para 19b) and risk management (para 18a).


4. There is a commitment to greater political engagement in order to accelerate progress.


Slow progress in implementing the Paris/Accra commitments was generally acknowledged (para 6, 15). Recognising the excessively technocratic approach of Paris/Accra, the Global Partnership emphasises its political leadership role (para 3, 13, 16, 36a) while donors and partner countries that endorsed Paris/Accra agreed to "intensify our efforts to implement our respective commitments in full" (para 16).


5. The Global Partnership will mobilise political leadership to complement country-led efforts.


The commitment by all those present in Busan to a form a new and inclusive Global Partnership for Effective Development Cooperation, based on common principles, will perhaps be the most enduring legacy of the Busan meeting (para 7, 8, 13, 35, 36). The precise form that this Partnership will take, including the continued use of a global monitoring arrangement (paras 35b and 36c), will be defined by mid-2012 but its political role has been emphasised as well as its links to existing global dialogue structures and processes.




The Busan Outcome Statement also highlighted other important themes: gender equality (para 20), transparency (para 23), aid fragmentation (para 25), corruption (para 33) and climate change (para 34).


The Busan statement represents an important step beyond the Paris and Accra agreements in the following ways:

  • It is endorsed by all donors, partner countries and South-South Cooperation providers (i.e. including the BRICS) as well as by a large number of international civil society organisations.
  • It recognises that aid is only one of multiple sources of development finance. Aid can therefore only be expected to play a "catalytic role" that complements these other resources.
  • It looks 'beyond aid' to facilitate broader partnerships – e.g. with South-South, private sector and civil society partners - that collaborate with Government for 'development effectiveness'.
  • It recognises – and accommodates – diversity amongst these many partners and allows resource providers from the South to comply with global commitments on a "voluntary basis".
  • It includes a commitment to complete the Paris/Accra commitments and to develop new global monitoring arrangements (under a new Global Partnership to be established in mid-2012).


The 2011 Cambodia Development Effectiveness Report (page 24) identifies a set of national partnership and development effectiveness priorities that are consistent with the global commitments made in Busan. In terms of practical and concrete actions, key features of the Busan Partnership commitments include a number of aspects that are most relevant for Cambodia. These include:

  1. The use of a national results framework as a common tool to assess development impact and to support coordination and mutual accountability around key results (paras 18b & 35a).

  2. Country systems are now to be used by development partners as the "default option", including use of joint system assessments and approaches to capacity development (19a).

  3. Sustainable impact requires a focus on "effective institutions" (29) that includes development partners adopting a more shared approach to risk management (18a).

  4. A commitment to country-led coordination arrangements, including PBAs (25a), includes a commitment to delegate greater authority to development partner field staff (25d).

  5. Building more strategic partnerships with other development actors: Parliament & local government (21); civil society (22); South-South (30); private sector (32).

  6. Promoting policy coherence with other development challenges: gender equality (20); social protection (27); anti-corruption (33); climate change (34).


Perhaps the most relevant and over-arching of the Busan commitments is:


"We will hold each other accountable for making progress against the commitments and actions agreed in Busan …To this end we will … At the level of individual developing countries, agree on frameworks based on national needs and priorities for monitoring progress and promoting mutual accountability in our efforts to improve … development results."

Busan Partnership for Effective Development Cooperation (2011), para 35


This requires that we first agree on priorities before developing the institutional and monitoring frameworks that can ensure improved development results. RGC therefore proposes that, in order to move forward in implementing the policy recommendations included in the NSDP mid-term review and the 2011 Development Effectiveness Report, and to ensure relevant adaptation of the Busan commitments to the national context, our development partnership should consult on, validate and prioritise the issues and policy actions discussed in the earlier sections.


During the Busan meeting, Cambodia also endorsed some of the 'building blocks' that will shape post-Busan work at both global and national levels on: (a) effective institutions; (b) results and accountability; (c) South-South and triangular cooperation; and (d) private sector linkages and development.