Synthesis Report on Aid Effectiveness Priorities
Report to the 15th Meeting of GDCC, September 2009
Aid effectiveness priorities have been developed based on the need to accelerate the implementation of the aid effectiveness commitments, together with the need to prioritize and focus on actions that would impact positively on development results. They are relevant to the national situation and represent the government's response to commitments included in the Accra Agenda for Action. These priorities were agreed and presented at the April 2008 GDCC where it was agreed that these priorities would be monitored through TWG progress reporting to the GDCC.
2. Progress and Challenges of Aid Effectiveness Priority Implementation
This first synthesis report of Aid Effectiveness JMI Priorities is developed based on reports received from 18 TWGs prior to the 15th GDCC Meeting to be held on September 29, 2009. Detailed progress for each TWG is presented in Annex One. The priorities fall into three broad themes as: (1) an ambition to establish or strengthen a Programme-based Approach or sector strategy; (2) capacity development; (3) the principle of mutual accountability.
a) PBAs or Sector Strategy: There are 12 TWGs that have included an ambition to establish or strengthen a Programme-based Approach or sector strategy which is the most commonly-identified priority area. TWG reports show that some TWGs have made progress toward finalization of sector strategy/programme. For instance, National Forestry Program is almost completed; Neary Rattanak 3 is finalized; and there is a development of the programme for Building Capacity To Develop Capacity, while somes are in the progress of preparation (RWSSH Strategy, National Mine Action Strategy). However, there is still a strategy/programme that could not be adopted on schedule due to the need of high level political consultation. Where strategy/progamme exists, some TWGs (Education & Health) have developed or reviewed their Annual Operation Plans (AOPs) to monitor the progress.
With good partnership or close collaboration with relevant line ministries/agencies and development partners, the internal and national consultants have been recruited to accelerate the harmonization of the five programmes under the Strategy for Agriculture and Water (SAW), and a mapping and scoping exercise on existing social safety nets of Food Security and Nutrition (FSN) is finished.
At the same time of making progress, constraints related to insufficient fund and capacity for program implementation, once draft program is completed, is raised by TWG-Fisheries and TWG-Food Security and Nutrition. While TWG-Education, D&D and FSN have smooth collaboration and inter-ministerial coordination, TWG-RWSSH reports that this continues to be a constraint.
b) Capacity Development: Six TWGs—Education, Health, Land, Forestry and Environment, Fisheries and PAR—raised a capacity-related priority, often related to the monitoring and evaluation, strengthening national systems or to financial management. Five TWGs have submitted the reports on Aid Effectiveness Priorities with the absences of Land TWGs. F&E TWG is in progress of setting up the M&E Units, while Fisheries TWG has set up the unit already, but is building up the capacity of the staff through Technical Assistance. There is good progress regarding capacity building on planning, implementing, and monitoring and evaluation system as technical assistance is provided in terms of advisory support to policy guidance to M&E unit, policy advice and feedback to policy and planning process. This would hopefully lead to the strengthening and using the national systems of the country. Moreover, Education TWG is establishing Medium-term Capacity Development Strategy by focusing on planning, monitoring and evaluation. Health TWG has strengthened capacity of the Provincial TWG-Health by providing workshop on Sensitization of Pro-TWGH Functioning and some regional training workshops on Strengthening Capacity of Pro-TWGH focal points.
However, some challenges were identified. Although there are units or offices to implement the monitoring and evaluation system, capacity building of staff working in those places is still needed. Fisheries TWG mentioned the challenges of improving M&E, which is a time consuming process. PAR TWG raised the better use of technical assistance should be made.
c) The Principle of Mutual Accountability: The Planning and Land TWGs have explicitly identified the use of partnership principles; however, there is absence of Land TWG in reporting. The actions mentioned by others, including Health, Mine Action, RWSSH, LJR, D&D, IRI, PSD and Gender TWGs, emphasize the need to strengthen ownership through partnership principles and joint consultations and meetings. Most TWGs reported that there have been many extensive consultations, discussions, workshops and meetings within ministries, inter-ministries, and with stakeholders, development partners and lead Donor Facilitators in establishing and preparing sector strategy, sharing best practices and sharing information on the progress on their working process. Two TWGs—RWSSH and Gender—have discussed with development partners concerning the development of the draft and the endorsement of the Partnership Principles.
The partnership work has proceeded well, but further consultations, discussions, and enhanced information sharing and coordination are still needed.
3. Constraints in Aid Effectiveness Priority Implementation
Reports of TWGs revealed a number of constraints in Aid Effectiveness JMIs implementation. These include the following:
5. Recommendations to GDCC (by TWGs)
As the overall perspective, since the last GDCC meeting held in April 2009, the implementation of Aid Effectiveness Priorities has progressed well. Most TWGs have developed and strengthened their own strategies/programs so they are on the way to Programme-based Approach which can improve information management that can support programming and coordination of resources. However, most TWGs often raise constraint related to capacity development of staff and lack of capacity in program implementation which leads to weak government ownership in negotiating with development partners. Requests from TWGs regarding the provision and the effective use of TA have been mentioned and some of them have been provided to fulfill TWGs’ needs. In short, TWGs and DPs still need to strengthen partnership in working together to improve their work and move toward the success in achieving the aid effectiveness objectives.
Three points related to the aid effectiveness priorities become clear from the feedback from TWGs and subsequent analysis:
To reduce the constraint, TWG should focus more on their commitments. Peer learning, knowledge and information sharing and 'learning by doing' are still very important for all TWG to increase their capacity and ownership. After the strategic meeting on partnership in Siem Reap, TWG can take this experience to improve the cooperation with DPs. Formal and informal discussions are needed for them to make a convergence of objectives and interests, while CRDB continue to support TWGs based on requests received from them. All TWGs should work more closely with their CRDB focal point to fulfill their needs and requirements and CRDB will itself continue to strengthen its own capacity to provide effective support to the TWGs, including through tailored support to individual TWGs or through collective support via the TWG Network.
Summary of Aid Effectiveness JIM Progress