Latvia Design Report 2017-2019
- Action Plan: Latvia National Action Plan 2017-2019
- Dates Under Review: 2017-2019
- Report Publication Year: 2019
- Researcher: Zinta Miezaine
Latvia’s third action planAction plans are at the core of a government’s participation in OGP. They are the product of a co-creation process in which government and civil society jointly develop commitments to open governmen... includes commitments on open dataBy opening up data and making it sharable and reusable, governments can enable informed debate, better decision making, and the development of innovative new services. Technical specifications: Polici..., whistleblower protection, beneficial ownership transparencyDisclosing beneficial owners — those who ultimately control or profit from a business — is essential for combating corruption, stemming illicit financial flows, and fighting tax evasion. Technical..., and governance of state-owned enterprises. Commitments continue from the previous action plans but contain mostly incremental steps in important policy areas. Moving forward, Latvia could pursue more ambitious reforms in OGP, focusing on transparencyAccording to OGP’s Articles of Governance, transparency occurs when “government-held information (including on activities and decisions) is open, comprehensive, timely, freely available to the pub... More in the financial sector and lobbyingLobbying transparency allows the public to ensure that there is diversity of participation and contribution to public decision-making. Technical specifications: Policies and actions affecting lobbying... activities.
|Table 1. At a glance
Participating since: 2011
Action plan development
Is there a Multistakeholder forum? Yes
Action plan design
Commitments relevant to OGP values: 11 (92%)
Action plan implementation
Starred commitments: N/A
*DIOG: Did it Open Government?
The Open Government PartnershipThe Open Government Partnership (OGP) is a multi-stakeholder initiative focused on improving government transparency, ensuring opportunities for citizen participation in public matters, and strengthen... More (OGP) is a global partnership that brings together government reformers and civil society leaders to create action plans that make governments more inclusive, responsive, and accountable. The Independent Reporting Mechanism (IRM)The Independent Reporting Mechanism (IRM) is OGP’s accountability arm and the main means of tracking progress in participating countries. The IRM provides independent, evidence-based, and objective ... monitors all action plans to ensure governments follow through on commitments. Latvia joined OGP in 2011. Since then, it has implemented two action plans. This report evaluates the design of Latvia’s third action plan.
General overview of action plan
Latvia has continued to perform well on key OGP eligibility criteria, including public access to information and an overall environment for civic participation. Latvia’s previous action plans led to major improvements in open data, online participation, and the governance of state-owned enterprises. The current action plan continues initiatives from previous plans, covering a wide range of topics. Topics include transparency in the budget process, lobby regulations, whistleblower protection, and reducing bureaucracy. Several commitments involve developing or using new technologies.
The State Chancellery and the public policy center, Providus, jointly organized the development of the third action plan. Nongovernmental stakeholders from the Council of Memorandum actively participated in the initial stages of developing the plan and received feedback from the State Chancellery if their proposals were not included in the final draft.
Notable commitments in Latvia’s fourth action plan include expanding the use of e-participation tools (2), developing an interactive budget tool (5), and improving transparency of state-owned enterprises (10). Other commitments include increasing the amount of data available on Latvia’s open data portal (3) and increasing transparency in public procurementTransparency in the procurement process can help combat corruption and waste that plagues a significant portion of public procurement budgets globally. Technical specifications: Commitments enhancing ... (9).
Table 2. Noteworthy commitments
|CommitmentOGP commitments are promises for reform co-created by governments and civil society and submitted as part of an action plan. Commitments typically include a description of the problem, concrete action... description||Moving forward||Status at the end of implementation cycle.|
|2. Portal for law drafting and public hearings
Develop a portal that allows the public to provide feedback on draft legislationCreating and passing legislation is one of the most effective ways of ensuring open government reforms have long-lasting effects on government practices. Technical specifications: Act of creating or r...
|Moving forward, the government could link the new portal to the databases of the Cabinet of Ministers and Parliament to further enable civil society’s participation during legislation drafting.||Note: this will be assessed at the end of action plan cycle.|
|5. Interactive budget tool
Develop an interactive tool to improve navigation of budget information and data
|Future action plans could increase public comprehension of the budget through interactive formats that explain public expenditures during the preparation stages of the budget process.||Note: this will be assessed at the end of action plan cycle.|
|10. Transparency in public-owned companies
Ensure that state-owned enterprises make more information publicly available through the monitoring of the Cross-Sectoral Coordination Centre (CSCC).
|Future action plans could include commitments that enhance the monitoring and transparency of the environmental and social impact of state-owned enterprises.||Note: this will be assessed at the end of action plan cycle.|
The IRM recommendations aim to inform the development of the next action plan and guide implementation of the current action plan.
Table 3. Five KEY IRM Recommendations
|1. Ensure greater involvement of the Council of Memorandum during the development of the next action plan and publish feedback during consultations.|
|2. Continue improving lobbying transparency with the involvement of Parliament.|
|3. Continue strengthening whistleblower protection by improving channels and mechanisms for reporting.|
|4. Include more ambitious commitments that address transparency in the financial sector, such as beneficial ownership, and making Enterprise Register information publicly accessible.|
|5. Continue improving systems for public consultation and promote open government locally.|
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