WB issues report on PNA reforms

09:37, May 19, 2011      

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The Palestinian National Authority made notable reforms in the past decades in some areas but the reform was incomplete or even not under consideration in other areas, a World Bank report said Wednesday.

The reforms aimed at strengthening economic governance and combat corruption, the report said, adding that these steps were necessary to "sustained economic growth and improved delivery of public services."

The progress in reform is attributed mainly to Salam Fayyad, the current West Bank-based prime minister, who firstly acted as finance minister in 2002.

In August 2009, Fayyad announced a two-year plan to upgrade Palestinian national institution and lay the infrastructure of an independent state for the future Palestinian statehood, established either through peace talks with Israel or via a unilateral declaration of independence in the United Nations.

In general, the report found out that the weakness of the PNA, which was founded in 1994, was related to lack of transparency during the era of late leader Yasser Arafat, who died in 2004 after Israel locked him up for two years in his Ramallah compound.

During Arafat's era, "government systems were fragmented, informal and gave considerable discretion to the office of the president and political leaders," the report said.

The PNA has undertaken measures to redress the weakness and these reforms worked well in the areas of management of public finances, government equity holdings, and reform of the petroleum commission.

However, there were some important areas in which reform was ether "slatted or not yet been considered," said the report, adding these areas include land management, transparency in licensing and other services managed by the PNA, and access to public information as an element of the anti-corruption legal framework.

Source: Xinhua
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