The Point (Banjul)

18 December 2012

Gambia: Finance and Basic Education Ministries to Implement MTEF Pilot Program

The minister of Finance and Economic Affairs Abdou Kolley has announced in the National Assembly that, come January 2013, the Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF) will be piloted at the Ministry of Finance and Economic Affairs and the Ministry of Basic and Secondary Education (MoBSE).

Finance minister Abdou Kolley made this declaration on Friday while delivering the 2013 budget speech at the National Assembly.

"It is planned that the MTEF will be rolled out to other ministries starting2014 and all sectors are expected to develop their strategic plans in anticipation ofthis initiative," Finance minister Kolley told deputies.

As part of the on-going public financial management reforms, Finance minister Kolley continued, the government is in the process of implementing the MTEF which will have a significant impact on the budget formulation process.

"MTEF integrates policy, planning and budgeting within a medium term perspective, and provides a link between ambitious poverty reduction targets and the annual budget priorities of Government" Kolley further stated.

According to the Finance minister Kolley, under the MTEF, each ministry will be required to provide a clear statement of objectives, programs and activities to be funded from the budget, further noting that the Integrated Financial Management Information Systems (IFMIS) which has been rolled out to all MDAs, has now been interfaced with the Central Bank of The Gambia (CBG) platforms.

Minister Kolley said, "This has enable us to conduct real time reconciliation and clearance of accounts between government and the CBG, thus increasing predictability in public borrowing by providing us with real-time information on each balance in Government accounts at the CBG."

He also informed the deputies that plans are under way first, to interface IFMIS with the Commonwealth Secretariat Debt Recording and Management System (CD-DRMS) to strengthen debt management secondly; complete the transition in IFMIS to EPICOR 9 (web-based) which is more user-friendly and accessible to government offices outsides of the Greater Banjul area; thirdly extend the IFMIS to self-accounting projects and fourthly to interface IFMIS with the GRA systems for more robust revenue tracking.

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