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 public.  Available budget information did not include allocations to, earnings from, or debt holdings of state-owned enterprises, and the government maintained off-budget accounts in several sectors not 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 did not meet international standards of independence and did not audit the executed budget.  The government specified in law or regulation but did not appear to follow in practice the criteria and procedures for awarding natural resource extraction contracts and licenses.  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 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;
  • Having the supreme audit institution audit the government’s budget, including its military and intelligence budgets, and making its reports publicly available within a reasonable period;
  • 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