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We’re hoping for a major step forward on aid transparency today, as signatories and Steering Committee members of the International Aid Transparency Initiative (IATI) meet in Paris to agree the remaining items to be included in the IATI Standard.
Phase 1 of the standard was agreed last July, and in January this year, the UK’s Department for International Development (DFID) became the first donor to implement it. They published their aid information in the IATI format, linking to the IATI Registry. Other signatories, including the Hewlett Foundation and Sweden, are expected to follow suit shortly.
Many of the items to be discussed tomorrow are priority issues for partner countries. They are also directly related to the specific commitments on transparency made in the Accra Agenda for Action. The meeting will consider recommendations on:
- Publication of key documents, in addition to aid data;
- Publication of conditions and, where available, results of aid expenditure;
- Publication of activity-level (ie individual projects and programmes) budgets and planned disbursements;
- Proposals to improve the alignment of aid to partner country budget classifications.
We very much hope that agreement can be reached on each of these areas, so that the focus can move from defining the IATI standard to implementing IATI, and maximising its potential to deliver substantial benefits to all users of aid information, especially those in partner countries.
Keep an eye out here for further information on what came out of today’s meeting. And later on this month, we are going to launch the aidinfo labs site. This will provide tools, ideas and visualisations for making IATI data accessible to everyone in an easy to understand format.