Preparatory Technical Conference for Haiti

Santo Domingo, March the 17th, 2010

The earthquake of 7.3 on the Richter scale which struck Haiti on January the 12th, represented a major setback for the country’s economy and social stability after sustained progress in macroeconomic stability, growth, reform efforts in governance and security. The Donors Conference March the 31st is an important opportunity for the international community to concretely demonstrate its support for the country, to enable Haiti to successfully overcome the coming months and rebuild a more flexible society.

Under the co-chair of Dominican President Leonel Fernández Reyna and Prime Minister of HaitiJean Max Bellerive, representatives from 28 countries and international organizations met in Santo Domingo to discuss the preparations for the Haiti Donor Conference to be held in New York on March the 31st, 2010.

During the discussion, with reference to the National Action Plan for Reconstruction and Development in Haiti and the damage and Post Disaster Needs Assessment (PDNA), discuss and agree as follows:

  1. The Haitian Government has presented a clear and compelling vision of the country, which reflects the challenges and opportunities for the future with the participation of different Haitians sectors, including Civil Society Organizations (CSOs), the private sector.

    The paper highlights the role of enhancing transparency, improving the delivery of basic services and promotes new growth poles and local economic development. It also discusses the future role as a city of Puerto Principe, the phases of reconstruction in rural areas and how best to construct, identifies the short-term budgetary support resources (housing, requirements for maintenance of public administration) and medium term as well as binational actions with the Dominican Republic.

  2. Adequate and unified vision of government resources (including budget support) with an optimal unification of resources from traditional donors, new donors and NGOs, including the private sector and civil society.

    The commitment to good governance is essential. The Haitian Government will strengthen the structures and mechanisms to ensure that funds are managed and used prudently and transparently and those trust funds can be monitored.

    To move forward, the key actions include: (i) restore basic economic and financial functions in key economic agencies (Ministry of Finance and Central Bank), (ii) check the status and rapid progress in public financial management (especially in procurement and accounting), (iii) the total aid effective monitoring and tracking processes mutual accountability, (iv) systematic and independent monitoring and reporting to donors on implementation and expenditure, (v ) amend focusing public expenditure systems costs to community needs and demand them to ensure good governance.

    Budget Support. Participants recognized the need to provide budgetary support to the Haitian government to address immediate and pressing needs. Financial aid can be received and handled directly by the Government of Haiti, with the establishment of mechanisms for monitoring, evaluation and transparency that will allow the international community to monitor the use of resources. The fate of budget support will focus primarily on immediate measures to provide housing solutions, interventions in the affected areas by promoting employment generation, substantial support and training to public administration to strengthen the functions of government. For this, the international community is committed to providing $ 350 million in additional budget support necessary for closure in 2010.

    Role of private sector and clear articulation of the most critical of government policy and regulatory reforms to be introduced to facilitate private sector participation.

    Increasing access to finance for micro, small and medium enterprises, among others, is essential to facilitate national participation in infrastructure development, reconstruction and development of entrepreneurship in general.

    It is also important to support the banking sector to avoid additional problems to the economic and financial system.

  3. Additional Resources and agreed mechanisms for financing, implementing and monitoring the Government’s vision and plan of action. The Haiti Reconstruction Fund (MDTF), with a window of the Trust Fund will be managed by a Steering Committee composed of the Haitian Government and donors, the World Bank as fiscal agent. In terms of duration for which support is requested, donors commit to provide 3.800 billion to finance reconstruction and recovery of the priority needs of Haiti, which covers a period of 18 months, as indicated in the PDNA. The transparency gained by the MDTF will complement the monitoring mechanism of aid implemented by the Development Program United Nations Development Program (UNDP).

    Among the activities to be financed by the Trust Fund are: the devolution and decentralization of Haiti, including the creation of new poles of development, infrastructure, watershed management and disaster risk management, capacity building of government institutions national and local private sector strengthening and restoration of basic social services, and others.

    The government has also proposed setting up a reconstruction committee co-chaired by Acting Prime Minister of Haiti and the special envoy for the United Nations for the Reconstruction of Haiti. This committee acts for 18 months pending the establishment of the reconstruction agency.

  4. A housing policy. Immediate and tangible improvements in services that elevate the lives of Haitians and contribute to social stability. The most immediate need is the provision of housing. Several measures can be taken immediately, including: (i) Move the population of the lowlands, (ii) a concerted effort with key United Nations agencies and others on drainage and cleaning of canals. Donors should work with the Haitian Government for the supply of 130,000 tents to meet the urgent housing needs.

    This should be accompanied by a job creation program to support families involved in the reconstruction process.

  5. Commitment to holding elections in Haiti as soon as possible to avoid a political vacuum.
  6. Dominican President Leonel Fernández promised to build a public university is fully equipped for Haiti in partnership with the Dominican private sector and civil society, which will benefit 10,000 students and strengthen the education system in Haiti and the country’s overall development.
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