PESHAWAR: The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government on Thursday unveiled its three-year Public Financial Management Reform Strategy (2017-20). KP Finance Department launched the strategy in a ceremony chaired by Finance Minister Muzaffar Said. The event was attended by provincial secretaries of all departments, senior government officials, representatives of the development partners, civil society organisations, academia, researchers and media. The strategy envisions a citizen-centric and responsive governance mechanism to ensure equity, transparency and accountability in management of public finances. The outcome of the reforms will be measured and monitored through projected targets mentioned in the strategy paper. The successful implementation of the strategy aims at expenditure control of Rs 2 billion in 2017-18, Rs 4 billion in 2018-19 and Rs 6 billion in 2019-20. The reforms are expected to yield additional revenue of Rs 25 billion in 2017-18, Rs 35 billion in 2018-19 and Rs 50 billion in 2019-20. “The strategy will go a long way in ensuring accountability, bringing transparency and eliminating corruption from all the provincial government departments,” said Muzaffar Said while addressing the ceremony. “The government has achieved another important milestone with the introduction of this strategy. It will help strengthen the financial management and business processes of the government. The current government has introduced important reforms including Local Government Act, Right to Information and Services, Prevention of Conflict of Interest, Protection of Whistle Blower and Ehtesab Commission etc,” he said. He said that the initiatives had helped make government functions more transparent, efficient and accessible to the public. The finance minister said that the PFM reforms strategy had already been approved by the provincial cabinet. “It presents a roadmap for reforms focusing on policy based planning and budgeting, more control in budget execution and expenditures, greater resource mobilisation and reforms in taxation. As a result of these reforms, the budget information will be accessible to citizens, establishment of specialised units to manage financial resources and accountability for results,” he said. Finance Secretary Shakeel Qadir Khan said that there was a clear road map for the implementation of the strategy which had been carved out in consultation with all the stakeholders. He informed the audience that the strategy would be implemented in a period of three years for which all the development partners would be approached for getting their support. The PFM reform strategy was evolved by the Finance Department with technical assistance from DFID-funded Sub National Governance Programme (SNG) after consultation and dialogue with other departments. A multi-layered oversight mechanism consisting of political, administrative and public oversight, has also been put in place to ensure implementation of the strategy. The implementation of the 2010 PFM Strategy was not comprehensive. The provincial government could not attain all the targets due to limited ownership, wavering political will, and lack of oversight. The focus of the new strategy is on strengthening key public financial management structures and processes to help the KP government built a robust system for ensuring equitable resource allocation, transparent and efficient budget execution and fiduciary risk mitigation, leading to improved service delivery. Published in Daily Times, July 21st, 2017.