There is the need to make data transparent and open in achieving success in financing for development, especially for the implementation of the up-coming Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Dominic Sam, Ghana Country Director for the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), said this here on Thursday in his opening remarks at the opening of a two-day UNDP and International Aid Transparency Initiative (AITI) regional workshop on data use.
According to him, Development Partners can only be effective when they can join forces in programming, avoiding duplication in projects to make efficient use of the limited financial resources available for development.
The Ghanaian government, UNDP and the IATI are jointly hosting the regional workshop which has brought together a range of actors and stakeholders in development cooperation.
They will discuss ways to exploit the wealth of available data to meet financial and budgetary planning needs at national and sub-national levels.
?With a new and more ambitious set of SDGs being negotiated in 2015, coupled with the ever decreasing aid budgets, especially for developing countries, understanding how financial resources and mechanisms can help achieve them and how development can be financed more effectively becomes more crucial than ever,? Sam emphasized.
The workshop, the UNDP official believed, was an exciting one because data had the power to drive decisions and give a roadmap to reform, and tells leaders and citizens alike, where they were and where they need to go, while pointing at the risk factors involved.
IATI, which was launched during the Accra High Level Forum on Aid Effectiveness in 2008, is a multi-stakeholder initiative that seeks to increase the transparency of development cooperation to maximize impact on poverty.
?In seeking the support for the acceptance of transparency as a key development issue, we were signaling our commitment and desire for improved partnerships and results,? Casiel Ato Forson, Ghana?s deputy minister of Finance remarked.
He reminded the participants that the ultimate goal of IATI was the better utilization of published information by the end-users in shaping policies both at the national and sub-national levels.
Besides the progress in publishing the data, Forson emphasized the need to exploit the wealth of information to meet planning needs at the national and sub-national levels.
?To improve the usability of the data, we need to consider the quality needs of the end-user,? the deputy minister urged.
Franklin Cudjoe, Executive Director of policy think-tank, IMNI Ghana, said the need for transparency and data usage should be seen against the need for continued development funding needs of developing countries in particular.
He said that although some developing countries had discovered new resources that added to their internally generated funding sources, these resources could only deal with little fractions of the development needs of many of the developing countries. Enditem