From Shadows to Sunlight, Paraguay’s Road to Transparency

June 15, 2018. Lea Giménez Duarte, Paraguay’s Finance Minister speaking at IMF World-Bank Spring meetings seminar Restoring Trust by Curbing Corruption (photo: IMF)

This article is brought to you in association with IMF Blog

Current Paraguayan Finance Minister Lea Giménez Duarte knows first-hand that transparency pays off. In this podcast, Duarte says the changes began after the government passed a transparency law in 2014.

“We started to rethink about how we manage resources, and why it’s important for people to know what we’re doing with the resources,” she says. “And this brought about a huge wave of change in many areas, thanks to transparency.”

Giménez Duarte discussed transparency and corruption with Christine Lagarde and others during a seminar the 2018 IMF and World Bank Spring Meetings. She says Paraguay went from “managing the resources in complete darkness” to a transparent process where “sunlight came in.”

Corruption has a way to hide in small, dark, little spots and spread around very quickly.

-Lea Giménez Duarte

This enabled the government to redirect resources to the areas that needed them most, she says. For example, social programs increased by about 200 percent in coverage and 250 percent in size, she says. She also credits a fiscal responsibility law and public-private partnerships as major contributors to Paraguay’s improving economy.

“I think it’s a no-brainer; we have to do this,” she says. “We will never have enough resources in the public sector alone to finance the infrastructure that the country needs.”

Making room in the budget allowed the government to contain the wage bill and put resources in social programs and infrastructure.

But passing laws does not immediately win public trust. The entire purpose of having a transparency law is “to build the trust, the social fabric, if you will,” Giménez Duarte says, adding that it is an ongoing challenge, yet one that appears to be heading in the right direction. She says the political dialogue now routinely includes talk of transparency and fighting corruption.

“Once it’s out there, I think it’s for good …. civil society is hungry for transparency.”

Notwithstanding Paraguay’s success in promoting transparency, Giménez Duarte says IMF support is crucial to the effort.

“Corruption has a way to hide in small, dark, little spots and spread around very quickly. And then once you notice it, it’s perhaps too late,” she says. “Therefore, having indicators, having monitoring, and having someone overseeing this with a very ample view and linking it to the macro stability, I think will be very useful.”

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

the European Sting Milestones

Featured Stings

Stopping antimicrobial resistance would cost just USD 2 per person a year

European Youth Forum and youngest MEPs call on President Juncker to keep his promise to Europe’s youth

The Monetary Union drives Europe into dangerous paths, CoR demands an EMU of regional content

Pharmaceuticals conceal drug side effects with the EU’s Court blessing

Commission launches new tool to support digital teaching and learning in schools

Why Renewable Energy is an attractive investment

The health of the human being in coexistence with a transformative biosphere

A day in the life of a refugee: why should we care?

How we overhauled healthcare amid Venezuela’s crisis

Countering illegal hate speech online – EU Code of Conduct ensures swift response

Presidents of pan-European youth organisations call upon the European Council to preserve the Schengen principles

The EU threatens to impose extra import duties on Chinese products

‘Terror and panic’ among Rohingya who may be forced to return to Myanmar – UN rights chief

Eurozone economy desperately needs internally driven growth

Capital transaction tax on Ecofin table

The world wide web is 30. Here are 8 things you should know about it

UN relief chief urges Security Council to back aid delivery, more funding for millions of Syrians hit by harsh weather

European Business Summit 2013: Where Business and Politics shape the future

ECB asks for more subsidies to banks

Alarm over violent attacks on lawmakers, opposition in Malawi, ahead of elections

CO2 can be a valuable raw material, not just a climate killer. Here’s how

To keep track of the SDGs, we need a data revolution

Stricter rules to stop terrorists from using homemade explosives

Business should be joyful – just ask the sports world

The EU can afford to invest trillions in support of employment

Is Germany’s political landscape becoming a breeding ground for extremism?

Bankruptcy or referendum: which one is going to be first?

European Business Summit 2014: The role of youth entrepreneurship education in EU’s Strategy for Competitiveness

It’s ‘time for concrete action’ says UN chief, welcoming inter-Korean agreement

How much more social deterioration can the EU people endure?

Consumers to be better protected against misleading and unfair practices

How can we produce enough protein to feed 10 billion people?

How bad is the Eurozone economy? The ECB thinks too bad

We can make sure Globalization 4.0 leaves no one behind. This is how

MEPs back measures to reconcile career and private life

Fragile countries risk being ‘stuck in a cycle of conflict and climate disaster,’ Security Council told

Mali: Presidential elections critical to consolidate democracy, says UN peacekeeping chief

UN member states express their will to tackle global migration but specific actions are still missing

Worldwide consumer confidence has shot up to its highest level for four years according to a survey of 130 Global Retail leaders

Trade wars won’t fix globalization. Here’s why

Governments urged to put first ever UN global migration pact in motion, post-Marrakech

Who is to pay the dearest price in a global slowdown?

EU Summit: Why was Poland isolated in opposing Tusk and the ‘multi speed’ Europe

The third bailout agreement for Greece is a done deal amid European economies full of problems

How do we build an ethical framework for the Fourth Industrial Revolution?

Nearly three million more displaced year-on-year, warns refugee agency chief, but solutions are within reach

Health is nothing but the main consequence of climate change

Here’s how India can soar in the Fourth Industrial Revolution

EU, Brazil to hold high level Summit in Brasilia

Gaza: deadly violence continues to escalate, top UN officials work to restore calm

FROM THE FIELD: South Sudan’s green shoots, highlight environmental recovery from war

JADE Spring Meeting Live Coverage: Entrepreneurial skills in the digital markets

ILO: Progress on gender equality at work remains inadequate

Eurozone: The crisis hit countries are again subsidizing the German and French banks

The Europeans back Russia-Turkey on Syria: A ‘Waterloo’ for Saudis and their Crown Prince

World’s human rights watchdog spotlights Afghanistan, Yemen and 12 others: Here’s the scoop

Deadly Mali attack to be investigated by UN rights experts

Leveraging digital for high quality internships

Happens now in Brussels: Green Week sets the EU and global climate policy agenda

The future of crypto-assets, from opportunities to policy implications

IMF: How To Deal With Failed Banks

More Stings?

Speak your Mind Here

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s