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Financial Management Agent for Afghanistan’s National Solidarity Program

2010-2012 || World Bank

Abstract

Deloitte served as the Financial Management Agent for the World Bank-funded National Solidarity Program (NSP) in Afghanistan. NSP is Afghanistan’s flagship community-driven development program. It was established in 2003 to enhance governance at the grassroots level and develop the ability of Afghan rural communities to identify, plan, manage and monitor their own development projects. Through NSP, more than 50,000 small infrastructure projects have been completed in more than 28,000 communities across Afghanistan.

The Challenge

Despite billions in development assistance to Afghanistan, many communities throughout the country remain isolated and disconnected.  For these communities, the benefits of training, technical assistance and development funding are not seen. Weak government institutions and capacity at the sub-national level, and continued insecurity make the challenge of reaching these communities even more daunting.  The NSP is designed to inject needed local economic development support to communities that would otherwise be forgotten. With more than $1 billion in foreign assistance funding flowing through the NSP from a wide diversity of bi-lateral and multi-lateral donors, sound financial management is critical to the program’s success and continuation.

How We Helped

Deloitte provided technical support for most NSP financial planning, including budgeting and cash flow management.  The project team also helped coordinate payment processing, in accordance with the NSP Financial Management Procedures.  This included confirming that statements of expenditure were prepared properly and that systems for payment processing through the Ministry of Finance were implemented effectively.  In addition, Deloitte managed accounts held at the Central Bank through which funding for community-level grants were made. Finally, we supported the overall NSP financial accounting and reporting system.

Solution

The NSP has disbursed in excess of US$ 1 billion in grants since inception, promoting needed local economic development in communities through small-scale infrastructure projects (e.g., canals, roads, bridges, schools, wells, etc.) that address local priorities. By providing management support for block grant disbursements, financial accountability, and the overarching financial management framework, Deloitte’s financial experience and oversight has been invaluable in achieving development goals.

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