New success story of Georgia manifested in the results of the Open Budget Survey released by the International Budget Partnership (IBP) for 2021 today. According to the publication, Georgia ranks 1st among 120 countries of the world.
It is worth noting that Georgia ranked 5th among 117 countries of the world in two recent assessments of budget transparency in 2017 and 2019 and was categorized in the group of Extensively Transparent Nations.
According to the above success for 2021, Public Funds Management (PFM) reform implemented in Georgia led to yet another recognition and outcome of efforts implemented in the last decade have thus been confirmed.
Success achieved by Georgia for the performance in 2021 resulted from the measures implemented within the scope of a PFM reform, including the improved midterm planning, introduction of program budgeting, increased scope of accountability, introduction of an electronic system of PFM, publishing of budget documentation, development of citizen engagement guidelines, design of a citizen participation mechanisms and others. Referred study and Open Budget Index (OBI) is released once every 2 years by the International Budget Partnership.
It is worth noting that the study envisages the same methodology of assessment for budget transparency of every country in the world. Scores are drawn for individual countries and an average indicator for every country, thus enabling nations to measure their progress in contrast with other countries and in reference with the average global indicator. They also see the trend of development in contrast with previous studies.
It is worth noting that study does not involve a self-assessment by the governments, as questionnaires are filled by the independently selected non-government organizations for this very purpose. Thus, results derive from the information submitted by the civil society of each country and independent experts.
Study covers the PFM by governments, including the following:
• Budget transparency;
• Engagement of stakeholders in the process of budgeting;
• Supervision on the management of budget execution.
Study was first published in 2006 and Georgia ranked just 30th with 34 points (with updated methodology) and was categorized in the group of Least Transparent Countries. Further studies led to gradual improvement of scores and points, as Georgia grew from a group of Limited Transparency in 2008, 2010 and 2012 studies.
In line with a study covering 2015, the country moved to a group of Significantly Transparent Countries for the first time and ranked 16th with 66 points among 109 nations of the world, while ranked 5th in 2017 and 2019 in the category of Extensively Transparent Group of Countries.
Together with its partners, Georgia continues to work on the qualitative improvement of reporting and development of a citizen engagement mechanism by cooperating with every stakeholder towards this end.