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Kenya to host sixth African Network of Parliamentary Budget Offices conference

The Parliament of Kenya is set to host the Sixth Annual Conference in Mombasa later this month. The forum which is held in conjunction with the African Network of Parliamentary Budget Offices (AN-PBO) will be coordinated by the Parliamentary Budget Office and is expected to focus on experience sharing on how the power of the purse can be used effectively to tackle Africa’s development challenges and the future of Parliamentary Budget Offices (PBOs).

Delegates expected to attend the event which is scheduled to be opened by the Speaker of the National Assembly, the Rt. Hon. (Dr.) Moses Wetang’ula, come from countries in Africa and across the world, including those with PBOs and representatives of international organisations supporting legislatures’ oversight of public funds.

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Top of the conference’s agenda will be deliberations on the global economic outlook.

This discussion is informed by the fact that the global economy is grappling with a web of complex challenges as countries attempt to rebuild and recover from the Covid-19 pandemic. Further, Geopolitical conflicts have surged from the ongoing war in Ukraine to the conflict in Sudan.

This session will discuss how fiscal policy can respond to the economic vulnerabilities exposed by the crises and the role of fiscal oversight in ensuring transparent and responsible financial management as the call for greater accountability and fiscal prudence continues.

Given  that the  knowledge of Members of the Legislatures varies across the world and that the PBOs have a crucial role to play in enhancing the fiscal oversight and technical capacity of legislative members in processes involving Budget or Money Bills, the Conference has scheduled a session on ‘The role of PBOs in supporting Parliament processes with Budget or Money Bills Amendments’ . During this session, Speakers will  lead presentations on how they have supported their Parliaments in this regard.

The conference is also scheduled to hold discussions on Managing public debt and fiscal sustainability in times of uncertainty.  This discussions comes in the wake of countries witnessing  a decline in the state of public finances over the past few years as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and economic instabilities. The session is set to cast a spotlight on effective public debt management, including balancing borrowing for growth and ensuring fiscal sustainability and how this is pivotal in determining a country’s financial health and resilience in uncertain times.

The conference scheduled to run from scheduled to run from August 27 to September 1, 2023 will also focus on the nexus between Public participation by country citizens acting as individuals or represented through civic societies in national budget processes and its crucial place in upholding democratic principles and promoting transparency, accountability, equitable public resource allocation and trust in government processes.

The AN-PBO is a platform for African Parliamentary Budget Offices and similar institutions to share ideas and experiences about strengthening support for parliamentary fiscal oversight.

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