MTEF workshop for local government officers concludes

KATHMANDU MAY 16: A three-day workshop on the Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF) for planning officers and account officers of 109 Local Governments in Lumbini Province concluded. The Nepalgunj-based Provincial Center for Good Governance (PCGG), which is also implementing the Provincial and Local Governance Support Programme (PLGSP), designed and delivered the capacity-building workshop. The workshops were held in Butwal, Bardiya, and Palpa from April 26 to May 14. MTEF Experts Damodhar Giri and Prem Dwawadi facilitated the workshop sessions.

MTEF offers a three-year framework for determining available resources and allocating them in accordance with government priorities. It is a dynamic tool for managing public expenditures. At the opening session of the workshop, the Center’s Executive Director, Yamkanta Pandey, said the workshop was organized considering the importance of MTEF in the country’s budgetary process. Due to resource constraints, the government must prioritize public services based on needs. In this light, the MTEF workshop aimed at improving planning and management efficiency as well as resource allocation to priority services. MTEF encourages greater transparency in government budgeting and planning processes by providing a framework for evaluating policy recommendations.

As many as 187 participants, including 15 women from 109 local governments, had participated in the workshop. Acting Principal Secretary at the Office of Chief Minister and Council of Ministers of Lumbini Province, Nirajan Ghimire, highlighted that “MTEF enhances the budget transparency process and documentation so that it is useful to effectively determine priorities and deliver services to the people in the evolving federal context.” Local governance expert at PCGG, Arjun Subedi, clarified that the MTEF workshop was conducted to achieve substantial reforms in public service delivery at the local level and evaluate its efficacy.

Workshop facilitator Giri said, “The practical sessions were tailored to capacitate participants on how to fill out the forms and formats, make resource projections for three years, and prepare the results framework, financial framework, and budget framework for three years.” The Center’s curriculum development expert, Bishnu Neupane, shared that the three-day event covered 12 important sessions to equip participants with the skills and knowledge to prepare the three years’ rolling out a budget with strategy, priority, major/sub-sectors, and pride projects of local governments and SDGs, as well as gender budget coding.

Also, on the occasion, a section officer at Rohini rural municipality, Dipa Subedi, said the workshop had created positive energy for capturing the essence of the SDGs and MTEF in their local-level plans. “It would be an immense opportunity for them to implement MTEF and evaluate fiscal targets,” she added.