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Contact: Rose Marie Harris

January 11, 1999 - The Eastern Caribbean Economic Management Programme is currently assisting OECS countries in the implementation of the Financial Management Reform (FINMAN) Project, aimed at improving expenditure planning and management and enhancing the overall quality of government’s financial management.

The main components of the FINMAN Project are Legislative Reform, the Standardized Integrated Government Financial Information System, Budget Reform, Training, organization and management and the Best Practice Initiative. Saint Lucia was selected as the Pilot site for Legislative Reform and the Standardized Integrated Government Financial Information System.

The implementation of Legislative Reform resulted in the enactment of a new Finance Administration Act, No. 3 of 1997 and attendant regulations - Financial Regulations, Statutory Instrument, 1997 No. 36 and the Procurement and Stores Regulations, Statutory Instrument, 1997 No. 37 - thus establishing the framework for improved management of public funds.

The Treasury Department implemented a new financial information system - the Smart Stream Financials package, which includes the following modules: Purchasing, Payables, General Ledger and Funds Control. The implementation of the new system was based on the need to improve payment turnaround time, enhance expenditure management and control and to produce more timely and accurate financial information for decision making. The system is being rolled out to all government ministries and departments as of April 1, 1999.

Another component of the programme - human resource and payroll will come on stream on Tuesday January 12, 1999, when senior government officers will meet for a one day sensitization session. The session will provide an overview of the functions of the system as well as the implications for the human resources operations throughout the government service as well as provide an in-depth look at the implications, methodology and an update of the progress made so far.


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