The national budget is a key event in public life. The budget sets out what national resources are available, and how they will be used by the government and its agencies in ways that affect the lives of citizens.
Budgetary governance – the process of formulating the annual budget, overseeing its implementation and ensuring its alignment with other public goals – is complex and multi-faceted. To help promote the quality of budgetary governance, the OECD is now preparing draft principles on this topic.
This work is still in progress at the OECD and the content may thus be subject to modifications, in particular to include the relevant comments received through the public consultation. Considering the importance of the work done on the budgetary governance, the revised draft principles may be embodied in an OECD legal instrument.
We are looking for your comments, suggestions and constructive input so that the final output of this work can be as useful and relevant as possible.
Who can contribute?
Everyone is free to send us their views – public officials, PFM practitioners, experts, or in your capacity as citizens who want to make budget processes more effective.
How can I contribute?
Please send your feedback to firstname.lastname@example.org
Your contribution will be treated as a confidential input, so your name and identifying details will not be published, although we may make a selection of comments available on our web page (anonymously) so that people can get a flavour of the type of responses we have received.
When can I contribute?
Please send your comments to us before 31 March 2014
About the draft principles
The draft principles draw together the lessons of a decade and more of work by the OECD Working Party of Senior Budget Officials (SBO) and its associated Networks, along with the contributions and insights from other areas of the OECD and of the international budgeting community more generally. In particular, the draft principles build upon the OECD Best Practices for Budget Transparency which are long-established as an international point of reference for good budgeting.
The draft principles aim to provide a concise overview of good practices across the full spectrum of budget activity, taking account in particular of the lessons of the recent economic crisis, and to give practical guidance for designing, implementing and improving budget systems to meet the challenges of the future. The overall intention is to provide a useful reference tool for policy-makers and practitioners around the world, and help ensure that public resources are planned, managed and used effectively to make a positive impact on citizens’ lives.
The draft principles are:
1. Fiscal policy should be managed within clear, credible and predictable limits.
2. Top-down budgetary management should be applied to align policies with resources.
3. Budgets should be closely aligned with government-wide strategic priorities.
4. Budgets should be forward-looking, giving a clear medium-term outlook.
5. Budget documents and data should be open, transparent and accessible.
6. The budget process should be inclusive, participative and realistic.
7. Budgets should present a true, full and fair picture of the public finances.
8. Performance, evaluation and value for money should be integral to the budget process
9. Longer-term sustainability and other fiscal risks should be identified, assessed and managed prudently
10. The integrity and quality of budgetary forecasts, fiscal plans and budgetary implementation should be promoted through rigorous, independent quality assurance.
Draft Principles of Budgetary Governance