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General News Fri, 15 Jan 1999

New methods for budget introduced

Accra (Greater Accra) 15 Jan. '99

With effect from this year, the Ministry of Finance will introduce a new method of preparing the national budget that will integrate both recurrent and development expenditures to avoid delays and other problems in the execution of development programmes.

The Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF), which is a component of the Public Financial Management Reform Programme (PUFMARP), will be an integrated three-year estimate based on strategic planning and clearly defined performance indicators and will ensure that planning for development is carried out ahead of time.

It will also assess the cost-effectiveness and efficiency of operations of Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDA's) and ensure transparency and the involvement of managers in the budget process, Mr Victor Selormey, Deputy Minister of Finance, said today.

He was opening a two-day workshop on MTEF for members of the Parliamentary Select Committee on Finance and ranking members of Parliament in Accra.

The workshop is to sensitise the MP's on mechanisms, rationale and implementation of the new system.

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Areas being discussed include financial management process, budget preparation, implementation and accounting, revenue management, aid and debt management, evaluation and fiscal decentralisation.

Mr Selormey said the system would hasten efforts to eliminate ghost names and fictitious deals in financial administration.

The system is based on national priority. Each MDA and district assembly would set up a committee to constantly monitor and review its implementation.

Mr Selormey said apart from injecting discipline into financial management and administration, it will also avoid the tendency of forgetting recurrent expenditures inherent in the present method of annual budgetary preparations.

He said the "shopping list approach" has been replaced with performance budgeting.

Commodore Steve Obimpeh(Rtd), Chairman of the Parliamentary Select Committee on Finance, urged participants to take their deliberations serious since the successful implementation of the new system would speed up development.

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