Liberia, Sweden and US to Pilot New Deal
Liberia has reached an agreement with the United States and the Kingdom of Sweden to co-pilot the New Deal for Engagement in Fragile States. The disclosure was made following a high- profile event during the World Bank and IMF Spring meetings, which was hosted by the Co-Chairs of the International Dialogue on Peacebuilding and Statebuilding on Saturday.
As a leader within the g7+ group of fragile states, Liberia agreed to pilot the New Deal along with it development partners. Other New Deal pilot nations include: Sierra Leone, Timor Leste, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Afghanistan, Burundi, among others.
Via its pilot, Liberia will work with Sweden and the US to use the New Deal’s Peacebuilding and Statebuilding Goals (PSGs) and an important foundation for progress towards economic growth and development.
The five PSGs are: to Foster inclusive political settlements and conflict resolution; Establish and strengthen people’s security; Address injustices and increase people’s access to justice; Generate employment and improve livelihoods; and Manage revenue and build capacity for accountable and fair service delivery. Although Liberia has been actively working in all five areas, the New Deal will put great emphasis on these goals, for the betterment of the Liberian people.
In accepting Liberia’s responsibility of piloting, Finance Minister Amara Konneh thanked the g7+ countries and the development partners for considering his country for the challenging role of managing the New Deal. He called on member countries to work along with the coordinating team to ensure the New Deal makes an impact.
Minister Konneh informed the meeting that Liberia has begun crafting a long term development strategy through the national vision process that will make Liberia a middle income country come 2030. He also briefed members of g7+ on Liberia’s new budget process, which he said will transition from the traditional recurrence expenditure budget to capital expenditure budget that will provide opportunity for Liberia to sustain economic growth and development for Liberians.
“We are already responding to some of our challenges and we expect that our other colleagues in the g7+ will do the same,” Minister Konneh urged his colleagues.
Minister Konneh who leads on Liberia’s new development agenda through transformation and the national vision process for Liberia’s strategic direction to 2030 called on fragile states to define their own unique pathways out of fragility with support from the international partners. He stressed that country owned and led peacebuilding and statebuilding is at the heart of these transitions from fragility.
The high- profile meeting hosted by the International Dialogue Co-chairs discussed the progress in implementing the New Deal for Engagement in Fragile States and showcased concrete actions and plans to implement it. The event also provided an opportunity to encourage enhanced commitment by national and international partners to implement the New Deal.
The roundtable meeting featured the participation of Ministers and senior officials from g7+ countries, development partners, and representatives of international organizations, civil society, the media, and the private sector.
At the fourth High Level Forum on Aid Effectiveness in Busan in November 2011, one of the major outcomes was the adoption of a New Deal for Engagement in Fragile States. A group of 19 fragile states including Liberia, known as the g7+ was instrumental in elaborating the New Deal and getting it endorsed 35 nations including, including Liberia’s co-pilots, Sweden and the United States.
All endorsing nations agreed on the importance of the PSGs in fragile states in order to focus on new ways of engaging, to support inclusive country led and country owned transitions out of fragility and to build mutual trust by providing aid and managing resources more effectively and aligning these resources for results. Support to the New Deal brings a much needed boost to the fragile nations campaign to ensure the New Deal makes a real impact.
The New Deal puts the voice of fragile states and their people at the heart of their own country led and owned peacebuilding and statebuilding solutions with the support of their international partners.
The New Deal will now be trialed until 2015, which is in line with the end of the Millennium Development Goals. The g7+ will use the outcome of these trials as evidence for inclusion of the New Deal into the MDG successor program in order to ensure that special attention is given to development in fragile states.