The Ministry of Finance held its 3rd Quarterly Development Partners meeting at the Ministry of Finance Knowledge Centre on 28 October 2011. Chaired by H.E. Emilia Pires, Minister of Finance, the meeting was attended by a large number of representatives of the development partner community including Mr. Finn Reske-Neilson representing the UN system, Mr. Luis Constantino representing the World Bank.
Minister Pires began by updating the development partners on the recent g7+ Ministerial Retreat held in Juba, South Sudan that was also attended by PM Xanana Gusmão, H.E Salva Kiir Mayardit, President of South Sudan, and Ministers and representatives from the now 19-g7+ member countries.
One outcome of the this g7+ Ministerial Retreat was the further refinement of indicators to monitor the Peacebuilding and Statebuidling Goals (PSGs) to be adopted at the 4th High Level Forum (HLF-4) to be held in Busan, South Korea. Other updates from the g7+ Ministerial Retreat included discussions on the definition of fragility, the New Deal and Communications and Governance Structure of the g7+. During the Juba event two new member-states, Togo and Guinea, were also accepted into the g7+ family.
In the interactive discussion with development partners, coordination areas from the 2011 National Priorities Program were covered including infrastructure and roads, health and nutrition, rural water and sanitation.
Development partners also exchanged views on maintenance for sustained development results, public procurement and community-based consultations. In reference to the National Priorities Process, Minister Pires with appreciated the good cooperation shown between the Government and development partners regarding aid program alignment in support of the National Priorities and encouraged all stakeholders to maintain their cooperation and support aid program implementation in line with the Strategic Development Plan (SDP).
Minister Pires also briefed on the post-National Priorities process. Minister Pires presented initial suggestions for a successor mechanism to the National Priorities Program for coordinated SDP implementation starting in 2012. The mechanism envisages greater reliance on sector-based coordination, fewer large Working Groups and a high-level monitoring committee.
Minister Pires also updated all present that the Ministry of Finance would be launching its Aid Management Platform and thanked the Asian Development Bank (ADB), the Government of Japan, and AusAID for their support in rolling out this new portal under the guidance of the National Directorate for Aid Effectiveness (NDAE). Minister Pires noted “the provision of this information and aid data is a mandatory requirement of our Ministry to all development partners and it is the responsibility of development partners to provide us with this data in our format and entered into our easy to use system”. Minister Pires also noted that the system is currently populated with validated data from 5 pilot Development Partners (ADB, Australia, Japan, UNDP and the World Bank) but would ultimately capture aid data for all development partners engaging in Timor-Leste. Minister Pires advised that the NDAE “stands ready to train all development partners to be able to enter the data into this online system and access the reports for their own use”.
Minister Pires also updated on the preparations for Busan HLF-4 in South Korea in November-December this year, for which Timor-Leste will also undertake a key role as one of the 14 “Sherpas” appointed as representative of the g7+ to negotiate the Busan Outcome Document, and will be involved in at least 3 thematic sessions regarding evidence from 2011 surveys, Conflict and Fragility and Peace Building and State Building.