U.S. Ambassador William Heidt and Cambodia’s Minister of Economy and Finance Aun Porn Moniroth recently launched an initiative to support Cambodia’s efforts to improve fiscal transparency and accountability in the management of its public finances.
The initiative, jointly developed by USAID and the U.S. Treasury Office of Technical Assistance, or OTA, will bring together experts from OTA and Cambodia’s Ministry of Economy and Finance, or MEF, to further the government’s public financial management reform agenda.
“The transparent and efficient management of a country’s financial resources is critical to long-term economic growth,” noted Ambassador Heidt. “The Ministry of Economy and Finance has made impressive progress raising its revenue collection from 15.6 percent of its GDP in 2011 to over 19 percent in 2013. This has given the Cambodian government significant additional resources to devote to social spending. This agreement will help the Ministry make additional progress in raising the efficiency of its budget resources.”
As part of this agreement, OTA advisors will work with the MEF to improve the way public resources are allocated at the national and sub-national levels. This assistance will initially focus on supporting the Ministry of Health, a key counterpart ministry for USAID. The advisors will also assist the Budget Department of the MEF in expanding the program to other government ministries and sub-national government institutions.
“We are looking forward to collaborating with the U.S. government on this important initiative,” explained Minister Aun Porn Moniroth. “As Cambodia’s economy grows, the efficient use of our precious national resources becomes more and more important.”
The United States is proud to work with its partner Cambodia to promote and improve an important facet of good governance – transparent and accountable public finance.