First Business News Portal in English from Nepal
KATHMANDU: Nepal slide down to 77th in ranking in 2021 from 65 in 2019 in the open budget survey according to the International Budget Partnership’s (IBP) latest Open Budget Survey indicating the decline of public access to budget information.
“Against the background of democratic backsliding, the pandemic has led to the first rise in global extreme poverty in a generation, and inequality is soaring. The wealthy have become wealthier, while the excluded, especially women and marginalized communities are bearing the brunt of the fallout” said Warren Krafchik, Executive Director of IBP. He Further added that Governments need to open up to public dialogue around how best to manage scarce public resources if we are to meet these challenges as well as inclusion can yield democratic & equity dividends in this time of great need and great disruption.
Worldwide, no country, among the 120 assessed, meets the minimum standards of score above 60 for adequate accountability on all three measures .i.e. Budget Transparency, Public Participation and Budget Oversight. Nepal has decreased the availability of budget information by failing to publish key budget documents, mainly pre-budget statement (PBS) and Citizen Budget as well as Year-End Report (Published Late) that would clearly explain budget policies, decisions and outcomes, according to the 2021 Open Budget Survey Nepal summary report.
As research by IBP and other organizations demonstrates, open budgets offer a promising pathway for countries to thrive socially and economically. They can restore trust in governments and strengthen frayed relationships between public institutions and the people they are meant to serve. The OBS 2021 survey provides a telling snapshot of current Nepal’s practices related to budget disclosure, opportunities for public engagement in the budget cycle, and effective checks and balances. The Measures of Open Budgets: Budget transparency is assessed in the OBS by the public availability and contents of eight key budget documents that all governments are expected to publish as per international standards. Specifically, the survey examines whether they are
published online in a timely manner and the information is comprehensive.
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