This week, senior budget officials from member states of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) met in Tallinn for their annual meeting of their international network.
On 5-6 June, the OECD holds its 40th annual meeting of Senior Budget Officials (SBO) in Tallinn, Estonia. This international network was established in 1980 and comprises budget directors and other senior officials from OECD countries. The SBO meets to exchange experiences and best practices on budgetary strategies, public finances and the effectiveness of government programmes.
Finance Minister of the Republic of Estonia, Mr. Martin Helme: „We need to make sure that public sector productivity is improved in a fast-changing and evolving world. We need to ask ourselves how to increase efficiency and create better value for citizens in the best way possible. It is important to share experiences with each other. This will help us all.“
„Estonia has just adopted performance-based budgeting. The reform passed an important milestone reform last week, as the cabinet approved our first performance-based draft budget for 2020 along with projections for the next four years. The effort from ministries and other government institutions has been enormous and generally successful,“ Mr. Martin Helme said.
„The objective of this reform is to achieve a higher quality of public services, to reduce government expenditures and make management in the government sector more flexible and less bureaucratic. Every euro in the budget has a purpose and is spent towards achieving a performance objective,“ Mr. Martin Helme added.
OECD Deputy Secretary General, Mr. Jeffrey Schlagenhauf: “Estonia has been a member of the OECD since 2010. I am delighted Estonia has hosted the 2019 OECD meeting of Senior Budget Officials.”
“Budgets are one of the most important policy instruments available to governments, as they summarise the policy ambitions and priorities of a government. As public expenditure increases, the availability and quality of the evidence that informs the decisions governments take is as crucial as ever. This year’s SBO meeting will help with that challenge by looking at issues such as how to manage fiscal risks, how to plan for digitalisation in the public sector and how to respond to infrastructure needs,” Mr. Jeffrey Schlagenhauf said.
The work of the SBO is summarised in the OECD Recommendation on Budgetary Governance which provides the basis of the OECD’s activities on national budget systems and its advice to countries on strengthening budgetary governance.