Institutional and Governance Review

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    Governance Reforms of State-Owned Enterprises: Lessons from Four Case Studies (Egypt, Iraq, Morocco, and Tunisia)
    (Washington, DC, 2015-08) World Bank
    The state-owned enterprise (SOE) landscape has become increasingly diverse. There used to be some relatively well-defined criteria, but with the growing complexity of state participation in the economy, there is no longer a uniform definition, and especially because the definition of a SOE has always been country-specific. SOE reforms can have major positive impacts not only by reducing fiscal risks by decreasing hidden subsidies, direct transfers, and overstaffing, but also by strengthening competition and developing capital markets. SOE reforms in developing countries began in the 1960s because of the poor performance of many of the SOEs. The reform movement sought to strengthen the internal capacity of SOEs. To enrich the discussion about possible avenues for performance-enhancing SOE reforms, this report presents the main principles of good governance of SOEs with references to the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) guidelines on corporate governance of SOEs (OECD 2005). This document is divided into six parts: (1) an effective legal and regulatory framework for SOEs; (2) the state as an owner; (3) equitable treatment of shareholders; (4) relations with stakeholders; (5) transparency and disclosure; and (6) the responsibilities of the boards of SOEs.
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    CPIA Africa, June 2015: Assessing Africa's Policies and Institutions
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2015-06) World Bank Group
    The Country Policy and Institutional Assessment (CPIA) Africa report describes the progress African countries are making on strengthening the quality of their policies and institutions. Some of the results from this report include: The overall quality of policies and institutions in countries in Sub-Saharan Africa was unchanged in 2014, but there was much variation in performance across countries. More than half the countries in the region saw a change in their policy environment: 10 countries experienced an improvement in their overall CPIA score, and an equal number saw a deterioration. There were divergent trends across policy clusters. Economic management weekend on the back of continuing fiscal policy slippage, as the sharp drop in commodity prices underscored weaknesses in the fiscal framework of several of the regions countries. By contrast, there was some strengthening in the governance cluster, with nine countries showing improvements in scores, more than twice the number of countries with declines. The greatest progress in this cluster was in the quality of budgetary and financial management.