Dublin, Ireland – Priorities for cooperation were discussed and a preliminary plan for the way forward was formed at the first introductory Mozambique-Ireland Joint Monitoring Team meetings (JMT) held in Dublin on 26 and 28 June. The JMT project aims to enable strengthened parliamentary oversight of development policies and processes through the joint monitoring efforts of African and European MPs, in this case from Mozambique and Ireland.
JMT members from Mozambique:
JMT members from Ireland:
Hon. O’ Sullivan, as Chair of the AWEPA Irish Section and Dr. Jeff Balch, AWEPA Director of Research and Evaluation, chaired the two meetings.
Mozambican MPs urged the JMT to put the need for more oversight over the management of natural resources and domestic resource mobilisation high up on the agenda. Other areas of interest included the private sector, trade and strengthening economic ties- with the ultimate goal of shifting from foreign financial assistance to increased foreign investment and trade relations.
The Irish TDs were keen to obtain more insight into the Irish funding allocated to Mozambique and, more specifically, the projects funded by Irish Aid. Hon. Comiche noted that, as a Parliament, the institution can only oversee aid which is recorded in the general budget of the country in the broadest terms. Specific projects and donors are beyond the ability of the Parliament to track.
Additionally, the JMT members exchanged information on their Committee mandates and parliamentary remits with regards to scrutinizing the budget as well as how their Committees, namely the Mozambican Planning and Budget Commission and Irish Public Accounts Committee, operate.
It was agreed that the AWEPA support staff would provide the team with a draft report of the meeting for review and facilitate further exchanges prior to the next JMT meeting in Maputo, which is preliminarily scheduled for November 2013.