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International NGOs' letter on aid transparency and IATI to Minister Sikorski

H.E. Mr Radosław Sikorski
Minister of Foreign Affairs
Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Poland
Al. J. Ch. Szucha 23
00-580 Warsaw
Poland

cc. Piotr Iwaszkiewicz, Director of Development Cooperation
Zdzisław Sośnicki, Head of Unit for Programming and Financial Issues, Development Cooperation Dept

26 September 2011

Dear Minister,

Delivering aid transparency at the High Level Forum on Aid Effectiveness, Busan, 29 Nov – 1 Dec 2011

We, the undersigned agencies, networks and organisations, are writing to ask for your support in ensuring that donors reaffirm and deepen their commitments on aid transparency at the Fourth High Level Forum (HLF-4) on Aid Effectiveness in Busan. In this letter we set out why aid transparency is needed now; what we believe is achievable at Busan and in the Working Party on Aid Effectiveness process; and what we would like you to do before Busan.

The recent Evaluation of the Paris Declaration and the Monitoring Survey emphasize that transparency is the indispensable foundation for aid effectiveness and mutual accountability. Although donors and partner countries acknowledged this in 2008 by making several aid transparency commitments under the Accra Agenda for Action (AAA), the pace and extent of change, particularly regarding transparency for development results, has been “mostly slow to moderate”. [1] Public support for the “Make Aid Transparent” Campaign – already supported by 96 organisations and with thousands of signatures from 125 countries – shows how people around the world want their governments to deliver on these commitments.

Partner countries have also recognised the need for greater aid predictability and transparency and for ensuring compatibility of the common standard with partner government budget systems, as reflected in the CABRI [2] Position on Aid Transparency. This compatibility would allow the alignment of aid information with country budgets, enabling partner governments to plan their  resource allocation most effectively and supporting accountability processes at the country level.

We believe that aid transparency is an area in which donors will be able to demonstrate real progress at Busan, with implementation of the International Aid Transparency Initiative (IATI) being crucial to that success. With less than 3 months to go before Busan, aid transparency must be recognised as a core theme and IATI as the primary vehicle for delivering this, embedded as a set of concrete, time-bound and measurable commitments in the final Outcome Document. In practice, this requires the following:

  • All donors to publish comprehensive, timely, forward-looking data on all aid flows in a common, public and comparable format in accordance with the IATI standard by December 2015;
  • All donors to publish implementation schedules by December 2012 in order to meet these commitments;
  • Published information to use common definitions and formats that are compatible with partner countries’ budgets and systems.

Poland’s support in actively promoting aid transparency internationally will be vital before and during HLF4. An EU common position that stresses the role of aid transparency in achieving greater aid and development effectiveness, in which EU Member States commit to implementing an ambitious aid transparency standard based on IATI, will be crucial. We welcome the EC’s recent Communication as a positive step towards that goal; we hope that, as part of the priority of “Europe benefitting from openness”, the Polish Presidency can provide strong leadership on aid transparency in the run-up to Busan.

Poland’s own implementation is equally important – we urge the Government of Poland to demonstrate its support for aid transparency by signing IATI before HLF-4 and by beginning to prepare an implementation plan for the publication of your existing aid information to the IATI standard.

IATI’s feasibility for delivering aid transparency is now undeniable – donors accounting for 33% of reported ODA have so far declared their intention to publish to the standard by Busan. We look forward to working with you to ensure that this figure continues to grow and that HLF-4 truly delivers on aid transparency both for Polish and partner country citizens.

Yours sincerely

  • Institute of Global Responsibility (Poland) – Marcin Wojtalik, Board Member
  • Polish Humanitarian Action – Janina Ochojska, President
  • Access Info Europe – Helen Darbishire, Executive Director
  • Access to Information Programme Bulgaria – Gergana Jouleva, Executive Director
  • Alliance for Aid Monitor Nepal (AAMN) – Prabhash Devkota, Secretary and National Program Manager
  • Association for Women's Rights in Development (AWID) – Lydia Alpízar, Executive Director
  • Australian Council for International Development (ACFID) – Marc Purcell, Executive Director
  • Bahrain Transparency Society – Adulnabi Alekry, President
  • Bond – Nick Roseveare, Chief Executive
  • CAFOD – Joanne Green, Head of Policy
  • Cercle de Coopération des ONG de développement – Christine Dahm, Secrétaire générale
  • Christian Aid – Loretta Minghella, Director
  • CIDSE – Bernd Nilles, Executive Director
  • Demnet Foundation for Development of Democratic Rights – Robert Hodosi, Policy Officer
  • Deutsche Welthungerhilfe – Uli Post, Director of Public Affairs and External Relations
  • Dóchas – Hans Zomer, Director
  • Estonian Roundtable for Development Cooperation – Ms. Piret Hirv, Secretary-General
  • Eurodad – Nuria Molina, Director
  • The Fight Against Corruption – Debbie Vogler, Chief Operating Officer
  • GlobalGiving Foundation – John Hecklinger, Chief Program Officer
  • Global South Initiative – Hansha Sanjyal, President
  • Gram Bharati Samiti – Bhawani Shanker Kusum, Secretary and Executive Director
  • Instituto Mexicano para la Competitividad – Juan E. Pardinas, Director General
  • International Budget Partnership – Warren Krafchik, Director. Member of the IATI Steering Committee
  • KEPA – Timo Lappalainen, Executive Director of Service Centre for Development Cooperation KEPA
  • Kurdistan Centre for Strengthening Administrative and Managerial Ability – Shadan Mohammed Saeed, Executive Director
  • Lalenok Ba Ema Hotu – Christopher Henry Samson, Executive Director
  • Make Poverty History Australia – Tom Costello & Joelle Auffray, Co-Chairs
  • Misereor – Bernd Bornhorst, Head of Development Policy
  • New African Research and Development Agency – Lancedell Mathews, Executive Director
  • Oikos, Cooperação e Desenvolvimento – João José Fernandes, Executive Director
  • ONE – Adrian Lovett, European Director
  • OpenAid – Claudia Schwegmann, Director
  • Open Forum on CSO Development Effectiveness – Brian Tomlinson, Member of the Global Facilitating Group. Member of the IATI Steering Committee
  • Open Knowledge Foundation – Daniel Deitrich, Chairman Executive Board
  • Oxfam International – Jeremy Hobbs, Executive Director
  • Plataforma Portuguesa das ONGD – Pedro Cruz, Executive Director
  • Publish What You Fund – Karin Christiansen, Director. Member of the IATI Steering Committee
  • Robert F. Kennedy Center for Justice & Human Rights – Lynn Delaney, Executive Director
  • Save the Children UK – Brendan Cox, Director of Advocacy
  • SHERPA – Maud Perdriel-Vaissiere, Managing Director
  • Slovak NGDO Platform (MVRO) – Nora Benakova, Chairwoman
  • Socio Economic Rights and Accountability Project – Adetokunbo Mumuni, Executive Director
  • South African History Archives – Tammy O’Connor, Advocacy Officer
  • Tearfund – Matthew Frost, Chief Executive Officer
  • Tiri – Fredrik Galtung, Chief Executive Officer
  • Transparency International – Corbus de Swardt, Managing Director. Member of the IATI Steering Committee
  • Transparency International Pakistan – Saad Rashid, Executive Director
  • Transparency Palestine – Hama Ahmad Zeidan, Director of Advocacy and Legal Advice Center
  • WaterAid – Margaret Batty, Director Policy and Campaigns Department
  • World Vision International – Beris Gwynne, Director of Global Accountability. Member of the INGO Charter of Accountability Board and INGO Charter of Accountability Company representative on the CSO Open Forum on Development Effectiveness International CSO Advisory Group and the IATI Steering Committee.


[1] The Evaluation of the Paris Declaration – Final Report, May 2011, p. 20.
[2] The Collaborative Africa Budget Reform Initiative (CABRI) is a network of senior budget officials in 22 African Ministries of Finance or Planning.

Download: This letter in PDF format