Asia and Pacific Region
The coordinating platform in the Asia-Pacific region is the Asia-Pacific Development Effectiveness Facility (AP-DEF) a multi-country platform chaired by Bangladesh and hosted by UNDP based in Bangkok. Since 2011, AP-DEF has gained experience with the Development Finance Aid Assessments (DFAA), a methodology to assess and better use various sources of development financing. The assessments were held in four countries these before AP-DEF joined the Global Partnership Initiative on Results and Mutual Accountability’s (GPI R&MA) programme. Based on an evaluation in 2015, AP-DEF decided to align the future DFAs (the Aid ‘A’ was dropped) more to the SDG agenda and the Integrated National Financing Frameworks. AP-DEF was interested in linking the focus on development finance with the results focus of the GPI R&MA programme. Participating countries are Bangladesh, Nepal, Cambodia, Lao PDR, Mongolia, Vietnam and Myanmar.
Because of AP-DEF’s focus on the DFAs, the participating countries’ are focused on streamlining the development financing and its institutional implications to the national development plans. The added value of the GPI R&MA programme in the regional discussions is the link between financing and results; the DFA is an important condition for a well-financed results framework and development plan. It can also function as leverage to a better functioning Country Results Framework (CRF). In 2015 and 2016, three regional workshops were held, from which the main conclusions were:
- The DFAs (e.g. those in Bangladesh and Vietnam) have identified a typical insufficient of sectoral data and evidence on the catalytic role of Official Development Assistance (ODA) in strengthening results oriented budgeting, domestic resource mobilisation and leveraging the private sector. A coherent planning and budgeting process is necessary as a platform to establish a financing strategy for the implementation of national priorities;
- A shift towards blended development finance – across public and private financial resources – should become a norm;
- Linking finance to results is, to a large extent, a change-management process; planning and finance managers are continuously dealing with multi-stakeholder interests, hierarchical realities and power relations. Understanding individual, organisational and institutional change dynamics will assist in designing effective change strategies;
- When attempting to attract the private sector to become involved in development financing, the traditional aid architecture may not be effective anymore. It may be necessary to develop more practical and less cumbersome approaches.
AP-DEF has published a concise background document on the Development Finance Assessments; it can be read here. On the AP-DEF website, links to country DFA reports and other materials can be found. A comparative study on the first four DFAs and recommendations for future use is available here.
Asia-Pacific Region plans on the GPI R&MA programme for 2017-2018:
In the Asia-Pacific region, AP-DEF will continue to work on DFAs as a means to improve the CRF, leading to an Integrated National Finance Framework. Since there are already examples of improved CRFs and SDG integration, these may be of use in the inter-regional exchanges. Additional topics to discuss within the region are:
- Enlarging the aid information management system to be a financial flow management system and how to make this sustainable in a country;
- Improving performance and results based budgeting;
- Climate change/disaster management (process and organisational set-up);
- Aid for trade.