June 26: At a time when a sharp polarisation is taking place in Nepal regarding the proposed assistance of the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC), a bilateral United States foreign aid agency, a new study has found aid programmes run by MCC along with World Bank and Asian Development Bank (ADB) among the most transparent in the world.
In its 2020 Aid Transparency Index, Publish What You Fund (PWYF), a UK based global campaign for aid transparency, has ranked MCC the as first among US federal agencies and seventh in the world for aid transparency. The index is released in every two years and measures foreign aid transparency among the world’s major development and donor agencies. According to PWYF, the assistance of ADB is the most transparent. The index has ranked ‘Sovereign Portfolio’ of the Manila-based agency as having highest level of transparency in the world. With 92.1 points in the index, MCC has been ranked seventh most transparent aid programme in the index.
“MCC is proud to be recognized as the most transparent agency in the United States’ Government,” a statement issued by MCC quoted its CEO Sean Cairncross as saying. “We are committed to sharing the successes and lessons-learned from our unique model and our investments—through innovative reporting tools, like our Evaluation Briefs and Star Reports—making critical data from our programs accessible to policymakers and the development community around the world.”
Congratulating MCC for the higher ranking, PWYF CEO Gary Forster said, “We congratulate MCC on ranking in the ‘very good’ category in the 2020 Aid Transparency Index. As large quantities of aid are being reallocated to deal with the COVID-19 emergency, the transparency of international aid is more important than ever. So, it is promising to see an increase in the quantity, quality and timeliness of aid data now being shared by a broad cross section of the world’s major aid agencies. As we work together to fill the gaps in the aid data landscape, we look forward to exploring how we can best meet the demand for data and data engagement.”
The 2020 Aid Transparency Index covers five US agencies and includes 47 major donor agencies. The 2020 Index shows significant improvement in overall aid transparency compared to the 2018 Index, along with key contrasts in scores among major donor agencies. MCC has now been ranked in the “Very Good” category and first among US federal agencies in five consecutive Aid Transparency Index reports.