The Ministry of National Planning and Development Coordination (MNPDC) in partnership with the United Nation-Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UN-ESCAP) successfully delivered a four (4) days’ workshop on Cost Benefit Analysis (CBA) and, Policy Analysis and Reporting (PAR) starting from 29th August to 1st of September, 2022 at Heritage Park Hotel.
Deputy Secretary for Strategic Planning and Programme Quality Group (SPPQG), MNPDC, Mr. Travis Ziku in his opening remarks highlighted that the workshop is important and relevant to key mandates of the ministry and encouraged participants to explore and make good use of the opportunity. In addition, UN-ESCAP representative Mr. Sanjesh Naidu also echoed similar sentiments by acknowledging the long standing partnership that ESCAP had with MNPDC hence committed to deliver this workshop to MNPDC staff and recognised the need to extend the opportunity to Solomon Islands Government (SIG) ministries and agencies project managers, project coordinators and senior government officials.
The workshop was facilitated virtually through a UN-ESCAP Technical Assistance support, Mr. Niki Soni who emphasized that CBA was categorized amongst important tools normally used during planning and designing phase of a project or development programme, whilst policy analysis and reporting provides concepts as to how output from CBA can be communicated to decision makers. Thus, conducting this workshop gives an opportunity for enhancement of technical capacity of staff within MNPDC and across SIG line ministries on how to prepare a well informative policy paper for decision makers. The need for information to be precise and well informed requires ability to analyse key attributing factors such as effectiveness and efficiency. Harmonizing of priorities and ensure there is value for money when committing of public finances towards investments and sustainable development approach from short to medium and long term is crucial. The workshop facilitator then encouraged all participants to make use, practice more and prepare to start applying the knowledge acquired at their various work places.
The workshop is part of MNPDC’s ongoing support towards implementation of the Solomon Islands National Development Strategy (NDS 2016-2035) and strengthening of the overall planning and budgeting process. Hence, having right tool such as the CBA and ability to do policy analysis and reporting in the planning process will help to improve recommendation, monitoring, evaluation and reporting on various development programmes and projects. This include having reforms that will eventually contribute to strengthening of coordination between government central agencies and across line ministries.
Deputy Secretary Mr. Travis Ziku at the end of the workshop thanked the participants for constructive discussions, time given despite work commitments, cooperation and responding positively to invitation from MNPDC. Going forward requires collaboration of all ministries and government agencies. Considering importance and technicality of such workshop, the ministries then recommended for MNPDC to organise another session to be delivered in face-to-face mode.