Governance in Bangladesh
Bangladesh continues to make efforts to improve its overall governance environment. Currently, efforts are underway to improve core governance systems in areas such as public procurement, financial management, fiscal reporting, and watchdog institutions. Several reforms to improve sectoral governance are also underway. • A number of public administration reforms have been implemented over the years. They include improvement of a promotion policy for Class I officers, with emphasis on merit; an improved training policy for Government employees; and creation of a Career Planning and Training Wing in the Ministry of Establishment. Nonetheless, the civil service remains relatively ineffective and unaccountable, and lacks proper motivation due to a weak incentive system. The highly centralized political and administrative system weakens the government’s capacity to deliver and monitor services. • To improve public financial management, the Government of Bangladesh issued in FY05 new annual budget guidelines on a pilot basis, which contained elements of more strategic budgeting practices, better fiscal discipline, and better coordination of recurrent and capital budgets. The government has also undertaken expenditure tracking surveys in the health and education sectors to establish benchmarks against which to track the effectiveness of service delivery over time. Furthermore, the Government of Bangladesh recently released a comprehensive Public Financial Management Action Plan. The Bank and other donors are working with the Governmentto further develop this action plan, and hope to align their future support in accordance with its priorities. • With a population of 140 million, Bangladesh has only 1.4 million registered income taxpayers and 300,000 businesses registered for value-added tax, with total tax revenue amounting to just 7.4% of GDP. In light of growing development spending needs, an extremely...
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