Delegation of the European Union for the Pacific

Launch event of the Good Financial Government – Supporting Effectiveness and Transparency in Management of Public Resources Programme, 12/04/2019

Lusaka, 12/04/2019 - 08:44, UNIQUE ID: 190426_4
Speeches of the Ambassador

Opening remarks by Gianluca Azzoni, Head of Cooperation
At the European Union Delegation to Zambia & COMESA

The Secretary to the Treasury, Mr Fredson Yamba
The Ambassador of the Federal Republic of Germany, H.E. Achim Burkart
The Head of Development Cooperation in the Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany Christoph Ritz
Senior Government Officials,
Colleagues from the Embassy of Germany, GIZ, KFW, representatives from cooperating partners
Members of the Press,
Distinguished Ladies and Gentlemen,

Good morning.

I am pleased to participate today on behalf of Ambassador Mariani in the official launch event of the Good Financial Governance Programme – support to the Effectiveness and Transparency in the Management of Public Resources (EFFECT) which is a joint effort financed by the Federal Republic of Germany and the European Union. I would like to thank all the partners that have supported the preparation of this project and notably the Government of Zambia as well as the German Technical Cooperation – GIZ.

I am delighted that today we can mark the launch of activities following the signing of the legal agreements among the parties during 2018 and following an initial period of stakeholder consultation and multiannual planning which I understand was concluded successfully in the last few days.

This is a strategic action to address key challenges that Zambia is facing in the field of public finance management, in line with the PFM Reforms envisaged by the Government of Zambia for the period 2019-2022.
There is no need to emphasize the importance of sound public financial governance for the success of policies aimed at sustained and inclusive growth that reflect the legitimate aspirations of the new generations. Sound PFM is the foundation of any efforts to accelerate the achievement of objectives under the Seventh National Development Plan and the Sustainable Development Goals. Sound PFM is also paramount to build confidence with citizens tax payers, and investors alike.

We are pleased to join forces with the German Technical Cooperation on this action. In the New European Consensus for the Development, the EU and its Member States have committed to ‘working better together’ to promote the implementation of the Agenda 2030 through greater coordination and coherence, leading to more effective and efficient development cooperation. With this goal in mind the EU and Member States have significantly scaled up their joint work in country since 2015, as a major contribution to improving the effectiveness of their work and the programme we are launching today is another example of such joint work in Zambia.
The European Consensus on Development also recognises that mobilising and making effective use of domestic public finance is central for sustainable development in each country and for the implementation of the 2030 Agenda. Through the "Collect More – Spend Better" approach, the EU and its Member States support partner countries in effectively mobilising and using domestic resources.

Secretary to the Treasury, Ambassador, Ladies and Gentlemen,
The Good Financial Governance / EFFECT programme aims to enhance the planning, budgeting, budget implementation and monitoring capacities of the Ministry of Finance and relevant public institutions. This includes the reinforcement of budgeting skills of relevant staff, the support to the Public Investment function in the Ministry of National Development Planning and the improvement of procurement management, as investment and procurement planning are central to credible budget planning and implementation.
The programme will also be working with the Zambian Revenue Authority in its efforts to modernise revenue collection processes and ensure that the tax system is simpler, the tax base is expanded and the compliance is increased. The modern world offers new possibilities and new tools that can support the needed tax reforms and administration strengthening in Zambia as well as in other African countries. The digital revolution offers technological avenues in order to achieve these goals.

Secretary to the Treasury, Ambassador, Ladies and Gentlemen,
Our approach to PFM encompasses the role of control and oversight institutions which have a key role in holding the government accountable. In this area we are encouraging peer to peer cooperation between Zambian institutions and institutions from EU MS as a most effective way to strengthen institutional capacity. Allow me to take this opportunity to highlight that our Delegation launched this week a call for proposal directed at supreme audit and anticorruption institutions of EU MS interested in cooperating with their Zambian peer institutions National Audit Office and Anti-Corruption Commission. We do hope to receive a good number of expressions of interests for this innovative modality in Zambia.

Secretary to the Treasury, Ambassador, Ladies and gentlemen,
The GFG-EFFECT programme provides a unique opportunity for key public institutions to make decisive steps forward in their reform agendas, building on our solid and longstanding partnership with Zambia and the experience acquired and lessons learned under past programmes.
Our joint efforts must generate tangible benefits and I trust that all partners involved will show a clear day-to-day commitment and focus on achieving and communicating results.
With political support, the most important ingredient, the programme can greatly contribute to enhancing the management of public resources which is in the supreme interest of the citizens of Zambia.

Thank you for your attention, Zikomo kwambiri

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