Kathmandu, February 3, 2018: Nepal has marked a significant improvement in its position in the Global budget transparency index. As indicated by Open Budget Survey (OBS) 2017, Nepal has scored 52 out of 100 points in budget openness and transparency beating its previous score of 24 in the Open Budget Index (OBI) of 2015.
The global report presented by International Budget Partnership (IBP) mentioned, “Nepal’s score of 52 out of 100 is moderately higher than the global average, which means that there exists room for further improvement.” The OBS has stated that along with many governments across the world, Nepal is in need of a serious transparent system in regards to the public funds. As stated by the OBS 2017, Nepal needs immediate measures to improve budget transparency, public participation in the budget and improve budget oversights.
The OBS has suggested Nepal produce and publish a pre-budget statement and a Citizen Budget that could present a brief data on the macroeconomic forecast as well as the financial position of the government to improve budget transparency. It has underscored the necessity of the government in active engagement with the individuals or civil society organization. This engagement can represent vulnerable and under-represented communities during the formulation and monitoring of national budget implementation to ensure public’s participation in the process.
South Africa and New Zealand have held the top position among the countries that provide sufficient budget information to enable the public to engage in budget discussions in an informed manner. Both of these countries have scored 89 out of 100.
Countries that get a score above 60 in the Open Budget Index (OBI) are considered to provide sufficient budget information that facilitates public engagement in budget discussions.