In the wake of 13 Pacific Forum Island Countries (FICs) completing peer reviews of their country development systems over the last four years, the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat (PIFS) is continuing to review progress made on implementing the review Recommendations.
The Forum Secretariat is also continuing to discuss with countries their Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) progress and the post 2015 development agenda.
As part of this ongoing support, a review team from the Forum Secretariat is visiting and meeting with government, development partners, NGOs and private sector representatives in both Papua New Guinea and Vanuatu in order to gauge progress against the peer review recommendations and the MDGs.
“It is a long term endeavor, and success depends on the sustained commitment and participation of Forum Island Countries, development partners and other stakeholders,” says Charmina Saili, Regional Planning Adviser at the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat. “We are here this week to continue our support, to discuss progress, challenges and how we and the rest of the region can help.”
The Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat is focused on supporting this crucial follow-up process and where needed helping countries mobilize additional resources to support the implementation of their peer review recommendations.
“Over time the real benefits of better development coordination – such as more effective use of development resources, reduced administrative burden for countries, improved information to guide decision-making and ultimately more effective delivery of health, education, energy, water and sanitation services to Pacific citizens – will be fully realized.”
The Forum’s Regional MDGs Adviser, Resina Katafono, is part of the delegation and will be discussing with government and their stakeholders progress and actions taken to achieve the MDGs by 2015.
“Papua New Guinea developed its own set of targets and indicators associated with each of the MDGs,” says Ms Katafono. “They did this in order to better reflect the realities in the country.”
The ‘2013 Tracking the Effectiveness of Development Efforts in the Pacific’ Report notes that there has been good progress over the past year in strengthening country systems and processes for planning, budgeting, public financial and aid management. Peer reviews of country systems have revealed that FICs are paying more attention to setting medium term costed priorities and establishing frameworks and systems to underpin and ensure effective progress in implementing national development plans.
There are strong signs of good progress at the country level to strengthen country systems and processes. As a result, more FICs are exerting stronger leadership over their development agenda and engaging more effectively with development partners.
“The challenge now is for FICs to sustain this momentum with the collective support of their development partners.”
The Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat will also be conducting follow-up missions this year to Federated States of Micronesia, Palau, Kiribati, Nauru and Solomon Islands.