Mozambique: International Technical Assistant in Public Finance Management – Health Sector – Mozambique

Organization: Belgian Technical Cooperation
Country: Mozambique
Closing date: 23 Jul 2017

Project Background:

The project aims at providing technical support to the Health Partnership Cooperation Framework (HPCF, Sector-Wide Approach) in Mozambique, to engage with Development Partners and the Ministry of Health on lasting measures to effectively strengthening Public Finance Management in the health sector.

At the broader level, the government of Mozambique has depicted its policy implementation on a 5-Year Government Plan (PQG 2015-19), complemented with rolling Mid-Term Expenditure Frameworks, published yearly and covering the upcoming 3 years. These macro-policy documents are used as references by sectors, which develop their yearly plans, taking in consideration more sector-specific policy notes.

The health sector in Mozambique, under the leadership of the Ministry of Health (MoH), has developed a Health Sector Strategic Plan (PESS 2014-19); complemented by a costing exercise. The PESS 2014-19 is the strategy leading the delivery of health services, through the National Health System (HNS). PQG, MTEF and PESS represent the policy background of the Ministry of Health that allows to define and defend its yearly Social and Economic Plan and Budget (PES/OE), which will guide the implementation of the sector program during the fiscal year.

Mozambique adopted a “Sector-Wide Approach” (SWAp) to the health sector in 2000. The introduction of the Health SWAp aimed at improving the performance of the sector, strengthening government leadership, putting greater emphasis on policy and strategy development and lowering the transaction costs of foreign assistance through better coordination and more alignment amongst donors. The SWAp mechanism includes, though it is not limited to, a pooled-fund known as PROSAUDE.

Over the past 10 years, Development Partners and the Ministry of Health have regularly reinforced the agreement to consider strengthening sector’s Public Financial Management (PFM) as one of the key areas of attention for development cooperation. Within the structure approved for the HPCF, a specific Working Group was created at technical level, to coordinate joint initiatives specifically on external control and financial reporting. This group is known as GTAF, from the Portuguese acronym: Working Group in Audit and Finance.

Substantial energy and time of the MoH and of DPs were invested to improve the efficiency and the effectiveness of the Health SWAp in harmonizing and aligning partners to government systems, strategies and plans, in line with the Paris Declaration on Aid Effectiveness. Over the past 4 years, under the project’s phases I and II, the group gradually strengthened and expanded its areas of support, to finally align with a more traditional approach to the PFM package, ie including procurement.

There are several dimensions of the health sector PFM that ultimately influence the performance of the HNS:

· The country’s overall PFM systems have regularly been assessed (eg PEFA 2009, 2012, 2015), providing good evidence of relative strength of the broad PFM system. However, recent events – eg the discovery of huge debts contracted without Parliament’s approval – have questioned the controlling mechanisms in place; and the dimension of out-of-budget operations. A sector-adapted exercise (health PEFA 2015) tried to cross-check these aspects specifically. It became crucial to understand:

o Where the health sector has aligned, and where it did not, with the broad PFM system established by laws and regulations (ie SISTAFE), eg how the procurement processes have adhered to national legislation;

o Where it inherited its strengths, where its weaknesses;

o How fiduciary risk could be controlled and reduced; etc…

· A recent move towards Public Sector Reforms (PSR) has prompted up the creation of a Health Sector Reform Unit (URESS), whose primary objective is to provide guidance, and orient health institutions towards faster, more transparent processes, and better results.

· Accelerate the follow-up of a Government’s Decree 10/2015 of 10th of June, aiming at re-structuring the planning, budgeting and execution functions, which are currently coordinated under two different departments.

· Understand and monitor the implementation of the decentralization strategy, the progresses on the de-concentration of health sector expenditure, particularly at districts’ service delivery units; and assess the real effects on service delivery.

· There are structural weaknesses in the health financing scheme. An exercise to develop a Health Sector Financing Strategy has not been successful yet, and the health financing is polarizing towards government’s revenues on one side, and donor funded vertical projects on the other side; posing serious threats to its sustainability. Three specific aspects of the health financing scheme deserve to be mentioned separately:

o The health sector’s own revenues have not increased in the period under consideration. Raising, channeling and re-investing own revenues is essential to guarantee financial autonomy and sustainability to the HNS;

o Externally-funded projects have increasingly been implemented off government’s system. Donors are running away not just from using governmental accounts, but from inscribing projects under Mozambican budget, which has to be considered a mere issue of transparency. This has created difficulties to make a sound analysis of the sector’s real envelope, and certainly jeopardized integrated planning;

o A revised common-fund mechanism has just been signed: PROSAUDE III. PROSAUDE has been an important source to finance the system’s recurrent expenditure, such as salaries and medicines. The revision of its MoU and the elaboration of a Procedure Manual have introduced measures to support priority-based and integrated planning, decentralized budgeting, control of the flow of funds; which will require intensified efforts to guarantee that PFM and risk mitigation processes are in place.

· The MoH has coordinated the implementation of several PFM strengthening plans. The most recent – the Integrated Plan of Institutional Reforms (PARI) was completed in 2015. To continue accompanying and steering the progresses and challenges in PFM, a GTAF technical team has proposed an action-plan built on the sector-PEFA 2015 recommendations, which should become an integrated plan to accompany all recommendations issued on sector PFM.

These and more detailed aspects represent the updated background, towards which the project’s phase III is asked to contribute.

Function:

The Government of Flanders (GoF) defines its activities in Mozambique through a portfolio approach. GoF together with other donors analysed as a priority the need for specialized expertise to improve the dialogue with the Ministry of Health of Mozambique on Public Finance Management (PFM).

GoF made a budget available for specialized expertise to be implemented by BTC for a period of 36 months. While the political dialogue remains under the responsibility of the Delegation of the Government of Flanders, the direct supervision of the project, hence of the TA, will be ensured by BTC’s Country Representative.

The Overall Objective of the project is ‘*to contribute to the strengthening of the health system in Mozambique with sustained added value’*. The specific objective being ‘*to contribute to the improvement of the Public Financial Management of the Ministry of Health*’.

Tasks:

The Technical Assistant will provide continuous assistance and technical inputs to the SWAp/HPCF, under the GTAF umbrella, and particularly:

· Coordinate the day-to-day work of the Audit and Finance Working Group (GTAF), under the leadership of GTAF chair and co-chairs.

· Being responsible to deliver on both administrative and technical aspects, in agreement with the SWAp structure, GTAF ToR and Annual Work-Plan; ensuring flexibility to introduce emerging items in the group’s agenda;

· Feed the discussion, exchange of opinions and practical advice in GTAF with:

  • User-friendly analyses of PFM documentations, reviews and reports;
  • In depth-analysis of PFM related reports and documents;
  • Consolidating planning and budgeting processes;
  • Presenting on sector’s budget allocations, execution and cash management;
  • Improving financial reporting and accounting;
  • Articulating internal and external control, and audit functions;
  • Introducing innovative follow-up of audit recommendations;

With both direct involvement, or through out-sourcing.

· Depending on the topics discussed, being available to participate and contribute to other technical working groups (eg PIMA), coordination bodies, eg HPG, PROSAUDE, or any other group meeting conveyed;

· Contribute to the achievement of more effective aid to the health sector through improved harmonization, coordination of donors and their alignment to the Sector Strategic Plan (PESS) and policies, in line with the principles of the Paris Declaration;

· Support the SWAp, and the MoH particularly, in the operationalization of the PROSAUDE III mechanism, particularly concerning financial managements, internal control and external scrutiny;

· Provide short training sessions on specific PFM related topics, identified by DPs and MoH;

· Facilitate the dialogue on PFM between DPs and GoM, in any required occasion;

· Guarantee fruitful collaboration and articulation with existing TAs to the Ministry’s administration and planning departments; promote collaboration, and avoid duplication; coordinate task-forces;

· Support the MoH administration (DAF) and planning (DPC) departments, the Reform Unit (URESS), the Ministry’s procurement advisors, concerning specific requests they might raise related to sector’s PFM;

· Provide technical and policy advice to the representative of the Government of Flanders in Mozambique, with regard to his/her positioning on policies in PFM-related issues.

· Provide the representative of the Government of Flanders in Mozambique with an analysis of the budget planning and execution in the Health Sector.

· Exchange experience and information with other BTC actors on health financing, HR management in the Health sector and PFM in Mozambique and other countries.

Profile:

· University degree in economics, public policies and management, public administration, law, political science or related

· A minimum of 5 years of experience in public financial management – all or partly in the field in developing or transitional countries; and with the public sector;

· A minimum of 4 years of overseas experience, of which a part in Africa. Knowledge of Mozambique is an advantage;

· A high degree of questioning business as usual, drive, self-motivation, results-orientation, and ability to work independently with minimum supervision;

· Cooperative and networking attitude and experience of working in multi-disciplinary team settings;

· Demonstrated interpersonal, communication, reporting, diplomatic and negotiation skills;

· Analytical skills and critical thinking;

· Good knowledge of Portuguese and English.

How to apply:

Interested?

Please apply no later than July 23rd 2017, through our website www.btcctb.org/en/content/jobs.

If you have any additional questions**,** don’t hesitate to contact us at +32 (0)2/505 18 65. :Symbol;}

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