Government-by-Government Assessments: Guinea-Bissau

During the review period, the government did not make budget documents or information on debt obligations widely and easily accessible to the general public.  Available budget information did not include allocations to, earnings from, or debt holdings of state-owned enterprises, and the government maintained an off-budget account in several sectors that have not been subject to adequate oversight.  Budget documents provided a substantially full picture, including major sources of revenue and expenditure.  Projected revenues and expenditures reasonably corresponded to those in the enacted budget.  The government made public its military and intelligence budgets.  The supreme audit institution lacks independence that meets international standards and did not audit the executed budget.  The criteria and procedures by which the national government awards contracts or licenses for natural resource extraction were specified in law, but the government did not appear to follow the law in practice.  Basic information on natural resource extraction awards was not publicly available.   Guinea-Bissau’s fiscal transparency would be improved by:

  • making budget documents and information on debt obligations widely and easily accessible to the general public;
  • including allocations to, earnings from, and debt holdings of state-owned enterprises in the budget;
  • subjecting off-budget accounts to adequate audit and oversight;
  • improving the reliability of budget documents by producing and publishing a supplemental budget when actual revenues and expenditures do not correspond to those in the enacted budget;
  • ensuring the supreme audit institution meets international standards of independence;
  • ensuring the supreme audit institution audits the government’s budget, including its military and intelligence budgets, and makes its reports publicly available within a reasonable period of time;
  • consistently adhering to laws and regulations for contracting and licensing in natural resource extraction; and
  • publishing basic information on natural resource extraction awards.

U.S. Department of State

The Lessons of 1989: Freedom and Our Future