On April 10, 2023, H.E Semereta Sewasew, the State Minister of Finance, and six officials visited Tigray Interim Administration (TIA). On November 02, 2023 the government of Ethiopia and TPLF has reached into a peace agreement which has triggered the revitalization of basic services and pubic services in the region. Among others, the peace deal has unlocked most enabling environments that could help to start resuming services in the region and official relationship with the concerned sectors.
The purpose of the visit was to extend support by conducting consultative meeting with secretariats and sector heads on block grant budget release, infrastructure and social projects finance management and requirements; and recovery and reconstruction programs start. Both Ministry of Finance and Tigray Interim Administration have identified the need to treat the situation in Tigray differently. Ministry of Finance of Ethiopia took note of the sense of urgency and has released block grant budget. For Education, Health and WASH related emergency activities the Ministry of Finance has dedicated around 45$ million from the Recovery, Reconstruction and Resilient (3R) project which will be directly implemented by the TIA sectors. This is a stream preferred to work side by side to the “Third Party Implementation” modality.
In addition to this channel one and two projects lists were sorted and discussed in detail by clearly noting the budgets ready to be released and procedures to be adhered by the Interim Administration. More than 182 million USD is allocated for Tigray in it is ready to be disbursed through different sectors. The discussion has also helped to revitalize the need to work closely if not as one entity in order to cut the long process short. The Tigray Interim Administration has jotted down public expectation and challenges of resources (budget) shortage. Among others the TIA cabinet members has stipulated that because the region is not generating any income at this right moment there should be a special kind of support or instrument in place to address the gap.
Procurement wise, in the consultative meeting issue of lengthy public procurement process and the need to come up with a solution or permit for emergency activities and related procurements was discussed. All challenges and issues that should be addressed by Federal government will be further discussed and managed in due-course based on a phased approach.
Other hurdles and challenges are agreed to be managed by establishing a joint task force that will work on resource mapping, capacity building and planning.
Distributed by APO Group on behalf of Ministry of Finance, Ethiopia.