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WB calls for fighting graft, boosting revenue collection.

Byline: Pajhwok Report

WB calls for fighting graft, boosting revenue collection

Pajhwok Report - Jun 12, 2008 - 17:06

KABUL (PAN): The World Bank, urging participants of a key international conference in France to channel their support to Afghanistans national budget, has claimed such aid is more cost effective than donor-executed projects.

Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, managing director of the World Bank, told the delegates effective national programmes were based on common elements of success including pro-active ministry leadership, solid public financial management systems and reliance on civil society and private sector to deliver services.

Of course underpinning any effort to scale up is the challenge of governance. Afghans are demanding accountability and a fight against corruption. So does the international community. But lets get specific: talking vaguely of corruption wont get the job done, the official said.

In order to stem corruption, Okonjo-Iweala observed, it was important to begin to tear down the culture of impunity. If you do something wrong, there will be consequences and everyone must see this, everyone, she added.

Afghanistan was in need of a much stronger revenue collection system, believed the managing director, who transparent administration of resource allocation and reductions of leakage held the key to achieving that goal.

Impressed by the success of countrywide schemes like the National Solidarity Programme (NSP), microcredit and rural access road rehabilitation, she said they had built a tremendous platform of social capital on which development efforts could be scaled up exponentially.

Scaling up the development effort across the country by building on this social capital will help Afghanistan fight its opium war. It will help it face the food crisis which is certainly with us for some time to come, the official remarked according to a statement from the banks office in Kabul.

With regard to the outline of the Afghanistan National Development Strategy (ANDS), she said the World Bank Group lauded the Afghan authorities for a comprehensive poverty reduction strategy paper.

The boards of the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank discussed the strategy last week based upon an advisory note prepared experts of the two organisations, Okonjo-Iweala recalled. The note calls for improved public financial management, procurement systems and budgetary processes.

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Publication:Pajhwok Afghan News (Kabul, Afghanistan)
Article Type:Conference notes
Date:Jun 12, 2008
Words:384
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