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1 July 2010

The African Development Bank has included revision of its disclosure policy among the promised reforms as it seeks a large budgetary increase.

At a meeting on May 27, 2010, the Bank’s governors endorsed a tripling of the Bank’s capital resources to nearly $100 billion. The commitment to updating the 2004 disclosure policy is included in a “Matrix of Institutional Reforms and Anticipated Impacts.”

The brief matrix entry indicates that the AFDB anticipates adopting the “best practices in the disclosure of information to the public” in the third quarter of 2010.

The stated “key action” is:

“Revision of the Bank’s disclosure policy and practice, to meet the highest standards  applied by other Multilateral Financial institutions, including the following elements:

  • Strengthen the Bank’s presumption of disclosure, eliminating the positive list and emphasizing a limited “negative list”
  • Release of Board/Committee minutes
  • Independent appeals mechanism
  • Disclosure of project-level results.”

The process for the policy review has not yet been established. Antoinette Batumubwira, Head of Unit,External Relations and Communication Unit, explained: We are at the very early stage but we will make sure the process respond to the objective of a most transparent policy. Details of the process should be available as soon as the task force in put into place.

When the Bank adopted its disclosure policy in 2004, an assessment was to have been conducted in two years. But in 2007, officials told Freedominfo that the review would occur in late 2007 or 2008.

By Toby McIntosh