26 November 2008
Participants from 14 countries benefit from CFTC-funded workshop
Enhancing local revenue sources, property taxation and inter-governmental fiscal transfers were among the topics examined at a recent Commonwealth workshop to in Birmingham to build good governance.
Around 30 participants attended the fourth Commonwealth Executive Programme on Finance for Sub-national and Local Governments held at the University of Birmingham. They were from Bangladesh, Cyprus, The Gambia, Ghana, Kenya, Lesotho, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Pakistan, Sierra Leone, Sri Lanka, Swaziland, and Trinidad and Tobago. The workshop, which was funded by the Commonwealth Fund for Technical Co-operation, took place from 17 to 21 November 2008. It also focused on alternative forms of service delivery through partnerships and innovative financing options for infrastructure financing.
“This programme enhances the capacity of local governments to mobilise local financial resources efficiently and effectively,” said Ms Jacqueline Wilson, Director of the Governance and Institutional Development Division at the Commonwealth Secretariat. “Local government officials will better understand ways of devising alternative forms of service delivery by bringing in private sector monies and expertise, but these collaborations need to be institutionalised to ensure that the interactions are on-going in building relationships.”
She added that governments can benefit from the training of their officials in the use of financial management tools and techniques that can be applied in local governance. Following the success of this workshop, the first regional programme on municipal finance will be held in January 2009 in Kuala Lumpur, in association with the University of Malaya.