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    Posted March 15, 2014 by

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    Phl lawmaker urges: Make foreign aid public

    A Philippine lawmaker on Saturday said he is seeking the publication in newspapers of recently signed foreign aid agreements to show the government's transparency in the utilization of the fund.
    Rep. Rufus Rodriguez of Cagayan de Oro City sought the publication of any agreement on foreign aid, whether loan or loan and grant, through House Bill 3931.
    "Considering the present allegations of misuse or non-use of foreign aid, it is high time that the government shows transparency in the utilization of foreign aid. Requiring publication of the foreign loan agreement upon its signing is a step in this direction," said Rodriguez.
    He said the lack of transparency in the disclosures of foreign aid granted to the Philippines and the supposed beneficiary of the fund is perceived as one of the main causes of the wastage in foreign aid.
    Even a study by the National Economic Development Authority (NEDA) shows that the country's capacity to meet commitments based on the Paris Declaration on Aid Effectiveness by 2010 is "disturbing" according to Rodriguez.
    "Of the nine indicators mentioned in the Paris Declaration, the Philippines has so far achieved the 2010 target for only one indicator, that of coordinated capacity development," said Rodriguez.
    The lawmaker explained that the Paris Declaration is an international agreement endorsed by more than 100 ministers, heads of agencies and other senior officials on March 2, 2005. It commits the signatories to increasing efforts in harmonization, alignment and management of foreign aid, including official development assistance (ODA), using a set of actions and indications that can be monitored according to Rodriguez.
    He said the country is a perennial recipient of foreign aid but even with such assistance, its development is still lagging behind those of many other nations in Southeast Asia.
    "This simply reflects the unrealized supposed benefits of foreign aid. Among the reasons for the dismal result including poor institutional development, corruption, inefficiencies and bureaucratic failures in the developing countries," said Rodriguez.
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