CoST Guatemala Assurance Report highlights improvement in transparency

The recently published Fourth Guatemala Assurance report has identified improvements in the transparency of public infrastructure.

The assessment was based on assessing the average rate of disclosure of the CoST Infrastructure Data Standard on 37 projects with a total value of $337m. The report found that the average rate of disclosure was 59%. This represents a small improvement on the 58% achieved in the Third Assurance Report.

The report found that the most transparent procuring entities were the General Directorate of Roads, the Municipality of Guatemala and the Municipality of Chimaltenango, which reached an average disclosure rate of 73%, 82% and 83% respectively.

With the support of the CoST Guatemala Champion, Her Excellency Vice President of the Republic of Guatemala, President and Members of Multi-stakeholder Group, the CoST Initiative unveiled the results of its Fourth Assurance Report at a public event, at the National Palace of Culture, in December last year. This was presented on International Day of Transparency, to representatives of public and private sector institutions, civil society, academy, international organizations and diplomatic corps. The report included major advances in CoST Guatemala, such as the requirement for mandatory disclosure by the Regulations of the Organic Budget Law and Resolution 01-2014 of the Ministry of Finance, as well as the launch of the Disclosure Manual and delivery of regional workshops for procuring entities.

The evaluated projects included roads, walking trails, parks, underground storm drainage systems, rehabilitation of dedicated lane for public transport, streets, sewerage system, water system, pedestrian sidewalk, sports and recreational facilities, health center, municipal services building, sports and recreational facilities, wells, system wastewater treatment, sports villas and schools.The report also presented a number of recommendations, so that they are applied by the procurement entities, as well as supervised and controlled by the competent authorities in the Republic of Guatemala,

  • such as ensuring the quality of information published in the public procurement portal;
  • improve administrative and financial management of contracts for execution of works, to avoid gaps in physical and financial performance and the creation of public debt without support;
  • comply with the maximum amounts for the expansion of public works contracts;
  • reinforce the formulation and planning of projects to ensure efficiency and quality of the works;
  • monitor that is built on land owned by the State, to ensure investment of public resources and legal certainty;
  • verify construction of safe works and environmental impact studies that meet the needs of beneficiaries;
  • create a national system of unit costs of materials, machinery and labour public infrastructure to serve as reference for procurement entities.

The presentation of the Fourth Report Assurance, not only evidenced the progress of the CoST Guatemala Initiative, as to necessarily promote transparency by publishing infrastructure data, but confirms the commitment of the Government and Multi-Stakeholder Group and internationally, in favour of transparency and against corruption in the execution of public works.