General News of Tuesday, 15 July 2008
Accra, July 15, GNA - Ghana is to host an international conference on Aid Effectiveness to discuss issues such as long-term aid commitments
by donors, reduction of conditionalities attached to development assistance and strengthening of parliamentary scrutiny in developing countries. Dubbed; the 3rd High Level Forum (HLF) on Aid Effectiveness, the conference, scheduled for September 2 to 4, is the first to be held in a developing country and is expected to bring together Ministers, heads of bilateral and multilateral development agencies, donor organizations and
civil society groups from over 100 countries. It is a follow-up to the Paris Declaration endorsed in 2005. The Paris Declaration is a set of principles agreed on by over 100 partner and donor countries and international organizations at the 2nd High Level Forum on Aid Effectiveness in Paris in 2005. It aims at reforming aid delivery and management to achieve greater effectiveness and results.
At the launch of the conference in Accra on Tuesday, Mr. Kwadwo Baah-Wiredu, Minister of Finance and Economic Planning, said the conference would examine progress made in implementing the Paris Declaration commitments, identifying the remaining challenges and determining the key actions donors and partners needed to take to accelerate progress in making aid more effective.
Mr. Baah-Wiredu said empirical research indicated that by applying the principles of the Paris Declaration, which included strengthening ownership, alignment, harmonization, managing for results and mutual accountability could help resolve the problems of how aid had previously been delivered.
He said the implementation of the Multi-Donor Budget Support (MDBS) scheme under which development partners used the same rules and reporting procedures to ensure aid effectiveness had helped to overcome challenges of huge cost of negotiating aid, frequent bilateral consultations and the unpredictability of funds normally associated with disbursement of aid.
The Minister said although the MDBS reflected most of the principles of the Paris Declaration, there were still some differences that the government and donors were determined to bring in line with the tenets of the Declaration.
He said the forum provided a unique opportunity for the country to present itself to the international community not only as a dynamic nation that pursued socio-economic reforms in a complex and globalized environment but also as a nation that had effectively managed donor assistance to the ultimate benefit of its citizens. The High Level forum will consists of roundtable discussions, exchange of ideas among participants and a ministerial-level meeting, which will come out with a declaration to be known as the Accra Agenda for Action.