The BCOP met by videoconference on 9 April 2020 to examine and exchange experiences on the approaches, challenges, and advice on budget-related responses to the COVID-19 emergency among BCOP member countries and based on the international organizations’ advice.
The event was opened with an overview of the core objectives of governments’ emergency-related economic policy response that directly impact public financial management (PFM) and budgeting. Types of common measures based on the international organizations’ advice were presented, as well as the common challenges and options related to ensuring the business continuity in the Ministries of Finance and Treasuries. Some PFM areas were also identified in which an adequate response will be needed in post-pandemic recovery and fiscal resilience building.
The core part of the meeting included a round table discussion in which participants from BCOP countries gave remarks on the budget-related measures introduced and planned as a COVID-19 response in their countries and on the measures introduced and planned to reorganize the business processes in the Ministries of Finance and budgeting departments. Key challenges, risks, and opportunities were also discussed.
Furthermore, an overview of recent advice from the Global Initiative for Fiscal Transparency (GIFT) on how to maintain fiscal transparency and citizen engagement in emergency times was shared.
Members from 7 BCOP member countries participated in the meeting, in addition to the BCOP Resource Team and Secretariat.
The event report is provided below, in which the meeting discussions and outcomes are summarized, included the overview of the key budget-related approaches being taken by the BCOP member countries in response to COVID-19.