São Tomé e Príncipe
Open Budget Survey Document Availability Tracker
December 2016 Update
To recognize improvements and identify slippages in budget transparency between rounds of the biennial Open Budget Survey, we periodically assess the public availability of the eight key budget documents – an essential component of transparency. This update presents the results of the most recent of these interim assessments.
São Tomé e Príncipe
|Open Budget Survey 2015||December 2016 Update|
|Pre-Budget Statement||Published Late||Produced for Internal Use Only|
|Executive's Budget Proposal||Available to the Public||Available to the Public|
|Enacted Budget||Available to the Public||Available to the Public|
|Citizens Budget||Available to the Public||Not Produced|
|In-Year Reports||Produced for Internal Use Only||Available to the Public|
|Mid-Year Review||Not Produced||Not Produced|
|Year-End Report||Produced for Internal Use Only||Produced for Internal Use Only|
|Audit Report||Produced for Internal Use Only||Not Produced|
As of 31 December 2016, the government of São Tomé e Príncipe makes three of eight key budget documents publicly available online in a timeframe consistent with international standards. This is the same number of documents that were found to be publicly available in the Open Budget Survey 2015, which assessed the availability of documents up to 30 June 2014. However, since then, São Tomé e Príncipe has published In-Year Reports but failed to produce the Citizens Budget.
To improve budget transparency, São Tomé e Príncipe should publish a Year-End Report and produce and publish an Audit Report and a Citizens Budget. For more information on the content that the eight key budget documents should contain, and the publication timeframe for each document, please see IBP’s Guide to Transparency in Government Budget Reports and the Open Budget Survey Guidelines on Public Availability of Budget Documents.
Transparency (Open Budget Index) 29/100
The Government of São Tomé e Príncipe provides the public with minimal budget information.
Public Participation 4/100
The Government of São Tomé e Príncipe is weak in providing the public with opportunities to engage in the budget process.
By legislature 40/100
Budget oversight by the legislature in São Tomé e Príncipe is weak.
By auditor 56/100
Budget oversight by the supreme audit institution in São Tomé e Príncipe is limited.
São Tomé e Príncipe should prioritize the following actions to improve budget transparency:
- Publish a Year-End Report, the In-Year Reports, and an Audit Report.
- Publish in a timely manner a Pre-Budget Statement.
- Produce and publish a Mid-Year Review.
São Tomé e Príncipe should prioritize the following actions to improve budget participation:
- Establish credible and effective mechanisms (i.e., public hearings, surveys, focus groups) for capturing a range of public perspectives on budget matters.
- Hold legislative hearings on the budgets of specific ministries, departments, and agencies, as well as on audit reports, at which testimony from the public is heard.
- Establish formal mechanisms for the public to assist the supreme audit institution to formulate its audit program and participate in audit investigations.
São Tomé e Príncipe should prioritize the following actions to strengthen budget oversight:
- Establish a specialized budget research office for the legislature.
- In both law and practice, ensure the legislature is consulted prior to the virement of funds in the Enacted Budget, the spending of any unanticipated revenue, and the spending of contingency funds that were not identified in the Enacted Budget.
- Establish a system of quality control for the supreme audit institution.