Nov 06, 2016 News
In keeping with the global developments of debt management, a number of key points have been identified in the improvement and modernization of the Debt Management of Guyana. This is according to Finance Minister
The economist made this and other pertinent statements in his historic Annual Public Debt Report. The document is the first of its kind in Guyana. It presents an overview of debt developments during the last five-year period (2011 to 2015).
Jordan said that the compilation of this inaugural Annual Report on the Public Debt for Guyana, clearly demonstrates the deserved and prominent place which debt-related issues have been given in the Government’s strategic agenda for the development of Guyana.
The Finance Minister said that the report also represents an important step to ensuring institutional transparency and accountability.
In addition, he said that it demonstrates the administration’s intention to lead through proactive action, so as to improve Guyana’s performance in sovereign debt management and, by extension, the overall quality of governance.
According to the report, the next steps for Guyana’s Debt Management include the Improvement to the organizational structure of the Debt Management Division (DMD); upgrading the Legal Framework; establishing a Public Debt Management Committee and devising a Medium-Term Debt Strategy.
With regard to the improvement of the organizational structure of the DMD, the report outlines that consideration will be given to reorganizing the DMD to achieve greater streamlining of functions. It states that this requires a portion of staff to be engaged in the analytical component of debt management, and others, in more operational activities.
Additionally, the report says that job descriptions need to reviewed and updated to reflect this reorganization and, so as to better clarify duties, streamline activities, and increase the accountability of staff. Such a reorganization it says would also help to minimize operational risk and make the current debt operations in the DMD more effective and efficient.
With regard to a legal framework, the document states that the authorities have agreed to undertake work to review and revamp current debt legislation. It says that this necessarily involves the replacement of the currently existing, but fragmented, debt management legislature into a single, comprehensive and coherent Act.
Significantly, Guyana will soon see the establishment of a Public Debt Management Committee. According to the report, an oversight committee will be set up to steer debt management policy and provide oversight to debt management operations.
The technical work group that was established in 2015 will undertake the analytical work but it was agreed that this working group should be a complement to rather than a substitute for a high-level policy committee.
With regard to the Medium-Term Debt Strategy, it was noted that in the future, Guyana will work on the formulation and implementation of such a strategy which needs to be formally integrated into the economic policy framework. (KIANA WILBURG)
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