Indonesia: Budget Credibility and the Sustainable Development Goals

Indonesia: Budget Credibility and the Sustainable Development Goals

The Indonesian government has made a firm commitment to meeting the targets of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by 2030, as evidenced by Presidential Regulation No. 59/2017. Development program action plans at the national and regional levels align with the SDGs and their associated targets. To have a significant impact on accelerating achievement of the SDGs, Indonesia should develop a mechanism to translate these action plans into development programs and activities.

Many countries face the challenge of budget credibility—the ability of a government to implement its budget as planned. This credibility is the goal of SDG indicator 16.6.1, which compares government budget planning with implementation. The Indonesian government’s budget performance in the four years spanning 2017-2020 showed overall implementation rates of 93% (2017), 100% (2018), 92% (2019), and 93% (2020). When disaggregated, however, the government’s budget reporting indicates a range of underspending and overspending in seven sectors that contribute to achievement of the SDGs.

This brief aims to assess the budget’s credibility in achieving the SDGs across these seven sectors in Indonesia: (1) Agriculture and Food, (2) Education, (3) Environment, (4) Gender Equality, (5) Social Protection, (6) Health, and (7) Clean Water and Sanitation. Furthermore, the purpose of this study is to assess the suitability of the central government’s plans and budget implementation for the 2017-2020 fiscal years. The study attempts to compare budget trends in Indonesia with progress toward achieving the SDGs, as presented in the sustainable development index report.


Assessing the credibility of government budgets through external audits: Results of a survey to INTOSAI members 2022

This report summarizes the results of the survey conducted by the International Budget Partnership (IBP) and the Division for Public Institutions and Digital Government of the United Nations Department for Economic and Social Affairs (DPIDG/UNDESA) on the experience of Supreme Audit Institutions (SAI) in auditing the credibility of government budgets. The purpose of the survey was to serve as an input for the development of a handbook on how the credibility of government budgets can be analyzed through external audits.

The questionnaire was distributed via email in February 2022 through the International Organization of Supreme Audit Institutions (INTOSAI) to its 196 members. As of April 25, 2022, 38 responses had been received.

The survey complements other sources of information that will inform the development of the handbook, including an earlier survey and a policy brief published in 2021, two consultancy reports on the experiences of Pacific and French-speaking SAIs, and several publications and reports by IBP. Additional information and materials are available here.

This report has been prepared by Regan Price, Intern at DPIDG, under the supervision of DPIDG and IBP staff.

Download the Report Survey Results – Budget Credibility

Ghana: Budget Credibility and the Sustainable Development Goals

Ghana: Budget Credibility and the Sustainable Development Goals

Ghana’s efforts to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by 2030 face major challenges, with rapid progress still needed in sectors related to the goals on hunger, gender equity and health. To accelerate progress toward development goals, Ghana needs to effectively mobilize domestic and international financing for programs that can address these challenges. National budgets are central to this effort; however, many governments deviate from planned budgets during implementation, a challenge known as budget credibility, which can result in shortchanging or deprioritizing spending in social sectors. The SDGs recognize this challenge with tracking indicator 16.6.1, which looks at government expenditures as compared to the approved budget, however, in many countries, including Ghana, public discussion around funding on the SDGs focuses more on allocations than implementation.

The government has shown its commitment to tracking investments toward the SDGs by publishing a budget report that shows allocations according to the SDGs. However, data has not been released about expenditure according to those allocation targets. This brief therefore looks at budget credibility patterns from 2018 to 2020 in seven key sectors that relate to 10 SDG goals, using available budget data from ministries as a proxy for SDG spending in the absence of more formal tracking systems for budget execution information on SDG spending. This analysis aims to show how Ghana’s current performance on budget credibility can potentially impact wider efforts to achieve the SDGs, and provides recommendations for how the government, development partners and civil society can expand awareness and action about budget credibility in SDG and development goal discussions. Download the paper.

Democracy when you need it most:  Strengthening legislative transparency and accountability during crises

Democracy when you need it most: Strengthening legislative transparency and accountability during crises


Democracy when you need it most: Strengthening legislative transparency and accountability during crises

The COVID-19 pandemic is an unprecedented global crisis still sending shock waves across public health systems, governance structures and markets. In response, parliaments had to quickly adapt to the new environment by not only adjusting their procedures and operations to respond to quarantine demands, but also passing legislation to address the emergency. From passing lockdown legislation to approving supplementary budgets or other measures to alleviate the effects of the pandemic, parliaments had to balance urgency with the demands of ensuring integrity and accountability, fair and proper representation, and inclusive decision-making.


The International Budget Partnership and National Democratic Institute partnered to analyze the role that legislatures play in mitigating the ongoing effects of the pandemic, especially through their budget oversight roles, and ensuring responses are effective and consistent with democratic norms. This policy brief incorporates global data and research conducted by the two organizations into parliamentary functions during the pandemic and provides recommendations for legislators, donors and parliamentary support organizations. It provides options for short-term adaptations that will ensure legislatures can perform — and improve — their functions in emergency contexts and at the same time promote long-term democratic governance reform. Download the report.