TALLINN - Estonian Minister Martin Helme met on Friday with experts from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) who are assisting Estonia in the implementation of its projects aimed at developing the state's financial management.
The European Commission as part of its structural reform support program is financing two financial management development projects in the Estonian public sector -- one aimed at increasing the efficiency of spending reviews and a second one in conducting an IT analysis of the state's financial management. Both of these projects are carried out with the help of OECD experts, spokespeople for the Finance Ministry said.
The government decided in July to initiate an in-depth revision of the state budget. The spending reviews are compiled as part of the said revision and the analyses will be carried out in the cooperation of several ministries' areas of governance.
"With these two projects, we seek to strengthen Estonia's financial management," the minister of finance, Martin Helme, said, adding that the meeting held with the experts focused on increasing the efficiency of spending reviews and their broader implementation in the drafting of the state budget.
"We wish to have the capability to critically assess expenditure in the state budget each year and receive proposals on how to better use the taxpayer's money," he noted.
"Regular implementation of spending reviews will help find supplementary sources of revenue and decrease expenses, either by dropping some activities or redirecting resources within or between areas. That way, we can earmark more resources for the implementation of government priorities," the minister said.
The delegation of OECD will be in Estonia from Aug. 26 to 30 and the financial management development projects will run until the end of 2020. As part of the visit, the delegation has met with Prime Minister Juri Ratas, the finance committee and the state budget control select committee of the Riigikogu, the strategy unit of the Government Office, National Audit Office and Ministry of Economic Affairs and communications.