Government of Honduras commits to acting on recommendations from CoST Honduras Assurance Report
The Minister of Infrastructure, Roberto Ordoñez, has praised CoST Honduras for increasing transparency and accountability within national public infrastructure and committed to implementing CoST’s recommendations. The announcement was made as part of a series of events organised by CoST Honduras to launch its second Assurance Report; CoST Assurance has increased transparency in the country, improving disclosure rates on projects sampled from 24 to 97 per cent overall. Key issues identified include increases in contract values, significant contract extensions and long delays from project design to implementation. Read more here.
British Embassy in El Salvador supports CoST El Salvador to increase transparency in public infrastructure
The British Embassy in El Salvador has officially joined the CoST El Salvador Multi-Stakeholder Group (MSG) as an Observer member to support the programme in increasing transparency and accountability in public infrastructure. The Embassy has long championed the initiative on the ground and their membership to the MSG marks a formalisation of this partnership. The recent CoST El Salvador Scoping Study revealed that currently only 26 of the 40 CoST Infrastructure Data Standard (IDS) points are proactively disclosed. As an MSG member, the Embassy will now support CoST El Salvador to institutionalise the initiative within Government. Read more here.
Spot an infrastructure issue? Text CoST Malawi!
CoST Malawi has created an innovative SMS platform to provide citizens with a real-time reporting mechanism for infrastructure issues affecting their local areas. Launched in late May, Malawians can now text the toll-free SMS number 576 to log details of any infrastructure projects, such as roads and schools, where they have concerns with its delivery. The service covers everything from delays in project commencement and changes in project proposals to failures in safety requirements. The number provides a lifeline for citizens to ensure that the services their taxes pay for are delivered efficiently and effectively. Read more here.
CoST and Open Government Partnership: Improving public infrastructure through open government
The vision of Open Government Partnership (OGP) is that more governments become sustainably more transparent, more accountable, and more responsive to their own citizens; CoST is closely aligned with OGP and works with stakeholders globally in the infrastructure sector to achieve the same goals. CoST has therefore been working with OGP countries to open up public infrastructure through their National Action Plans, with our latest blog outlining three practical recommendations for OGP countries.
CoST Honduras is endorsed in the 2016-2018 OGP Honduras National Action Plan under the “Policy for Transparency, Integrity and Ethics in Honduras” and “Open Procurement” commitments. The policy commitment incorporates CoST as a means of strengthening infrastructure transparency in the fight against corruption, whilst the open procurement promise utilises CoST as an example of best practice in opening up public procurement
We strongly welcome these global commitments and local partnerships and hope other CoST-OGP countries will follow suit – stay tuned for more information!
What is CoST? Check out our new Factsheet for all you need to know!
Since the launch of the global programme in 2012, CoST has been helping to deliver better value from investments in public infrastructure. From savings totalling US$8 million to data disclosed on over 3,000 projects in Guatecompras and project retendering in Malawi to prevent wastage of public resources, fifteen CoST countries are opening up public infrastructure contracting for the benefit of citizens, industry and the Government. Our new Factsheet explains exactly what CoST is, how it works and why we need it – don’t miss it!
Just want the headlines? Then take a look at “10 Things to Know About CoST in 2015” for a roundup of our highlights from last year.