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Q63.

Are procurement requirements derived from a national defence and security strategy, and are procurement decisions well-audited? Are defence purchases based on clearly identified and quantified requirements?

63a. Procurement requirements

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63b. Scrutiny

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63c. Purchases

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Overall there is an alignment between the military strategies [1], the Long-term Plan on the Development of the Armed Forces [2] and the annual ministerial directives [3, 4, 5] in setting the procurement requirements and defence purchases. However, there are cases of procurements conducted outside the planned procurements that are conducted by the end of the year to meet the spending objectives [6].
The procurement requirements are generally derived from the military strategy, the Long-term Plan on the Development of the Armed Forces, and the ministerial directives. The military strategy was adopted after the adoption of the National Security Strategy and is in line with this strategy, as specifically referred to in chapter 1 of this document [1]. The National Security Strategy, referred by the reviewer, is not the guiding document for the defence procurements rather a political, guiding document for different sectors.

The State Supreme Audit Institution (SSAI) scrutinizes the alignment of the procurements with strategic documents, multiannual budget programming and the actual procurements and purchases. Audit reports are published and presented to parliament [1]. However, there has been no parliamentary oversight or discussion on SSAI findings or overall alignment of defence procurements/acquisitions with the adopted strategies. Though, it is true that, scrutiny is not always very effective [2].

Inconsistencies have been found by the SSAI in the multiannual procurements made by the MoD, such as incompatibilities between procurements, functions, and training, procurement made at the end of the year not resulting from programming, rather deriving from the motive to use unspent funds, etc. [1].
Despite the inconsistencies found in the SSAI reports, the Ministry of Defence’s major purchases are on the whole based on requirements identified in the strategy and policy documents. The reference to the National Security Strategy is not relevant as this document is a general political guideline for other sectors also. For instance, “Strengthening the Security and Defence Sector” is listed as the fifth “strategic necessity” in the document after “Improvement of the rule of law and good governance”, “Strengthening public institutions”, “Promoting sustainable economic development” and “Develop a quality education system” [2]. As it has been conceptualised, this document is not expected to provide procurement guidelines. The specific objectives provided in the document for the MoD include the adoption of the military strategy and the implementation of the Defence Strategy Review [3].

No evidence was found that there is a published national and defence strategy; additionally, see the country’s last assessment (3). There is no strategy outlined in the Ministry of Defence website (1). Thus, it is impossible to assess whether procurement requirements derive from a national defence and security strategy. According to Art. 27 of the 2016 Public Procurement Law, requirements shall be determined in advance before any public procurement procedures are launched. Additionally, the nature and extent of the requirements of the contracting service must be precisely established and detailed technical specifications established based on standards and/or performance or functional requirements (2). It is not clear if the regulations apply to defence purchases.

As has been outlined in detail in question 59, there is only limited oversight of defence procurements, if any at all. According to Art. 163 of the Public Procurement Law, an external audit should check on the compliance of public contracts (1). As has been noted in previous questions, the Court of Auditors has only limited scope to oversee the military and the government (2), (3). In 2017, an inspector general was attached to the Prime Minister’s Office that should control public finances and procurements (4). No information could be found on whether the inspector general also controls the procurements of the Ministry of Defence. Also, no information on internal military control mechanisms was publicly available.

Since no national strategy has been found (see question 63A), it is impossible to assess whether purchases are inside or outside of it. Therefore, I coded it “Not Applicable”. Analyses suggest that Algeria’s acquisition is only partly useful for counter-insurgency or counter-terrorism, which are considered to be the country’s major threats (1). Other analysists have noted that Algeria has bought more weapons than it realistically needs for defending the country (2).

The government had not produced a white paper until April 2018 (it could not be accessed). National Development Plans (the last issued was for 2018-2022) contain strategic goals for defence and security, though no financial information is provided. Defence purchases are not made public in advance before being approved by the president (1), (2).

By law, scrutiny of public procurement including defence (except arms and military logistics procurement classified as secret) is conducted by the audit court and the National Public Procurement Service (SNCP) of the finance ministry (1). However, institutions mentioned above do not make public considerations on the consistency of planned purchases with a defence and security strategy.

The Ministry of Defence and armed forces base some major purchases on clearly identified requirements, but there appear to be also opportunistic and unplanned purchases.

For example, the presidential dispatch that authorized the Ministry of Defence to purchase 17 naval vessels from the Italian company Privinvest Shipbuilding Investments LLC in August 2016, it justifies the purchase with the implementation of the maritime coast vigilance project to upgrade the military navy of the Angolan Armed Forces. The project is part of a long-term strategy initiated in 2007 to modernize Angola’s defence and security sector until 2025 (1), (2).

However, there are also examples of purchases that have not been publicly justified. For instance, the necessity of the $1 billion contract to purchase refurbished second-hand Sukhoi Su-30K fighter jets (first sold to India in the 1990s) for Angola’s air force has not been publicly explained and was questioned by industry observers and Angolan media (3), (4), (5).

According to the Defence Law, the National Defence Council (CODENA) is the advisory body of the President regarding the planning of national defence. [1] [2] Likewise, since 2016, the Secretariat of Strategic Affairs has been working under the orbit of the Office of the Chief of Staff, which has the objective of “participating in the development of the national security strategy, as well as in other conceptual documents and criteria on this matter, coordinating with the competent areas of the National State.” Despite this, Argentina does not yet have (it has not been published) with a national defence strategy. [3] The government presented in 2018 a restructuring plan for the Armed Forces that mentions the fulfillment of three stages of action. The first three years, the second five, and the third eight. [4] The complete plan is not accessible to the public. Only the modifications made by Decrees 683 and 703 of 2018 are published. In the latter, it is the DPDN that begins the planning cycle for defence in Argentina every four years and is the first level political guideline under which the Ministry of Defence and the Armed Forces must frame their planning. However, this regulation configures the general guidelines and it is not possible to evaluate how the requirements for defence procurement and contracting are generated from that document. [5] [6]

Internal (Internal Audit of the Ministry and General Inspections of the Forces) and external (SIGEN and AGN) scrutiny shows a variety of activities and issues that are subjected to audits. However, these are not with regard to national defence strategy, but rather procedural matters. [1] Parliament has the prerogative to request reports from the Executive Branch on its decisions. An example of this is the project in the Senate (S. 4967/17) on the acquisition by the Argentine Navy of ocean patrol vessels for its sea fleet. [2] [3] There is no evidence that scrutiny to ensure purchases are aligned with the national security strategy.

There is Not Enough Information to score this indicator. It is not possible to assess whether purchases are in line with the national strategy, given that Argentina does not have one.

The National Security Strategy [1] sets the framework of the national security priorities, both internal and external. It emphasizes the importance of state sustainability, the rule of law, democratic values, an independent judicial system, social justice, modern armed forces, engagement in international dialogue, etc. There is no direct link to the procurement requirement in the strategy. The defence procurement is regulated by the Law on Procurement [2], government decrees on procurement regulations [3], and internal orders and decrees by the Ministry of Defence (MoD).
As a result of the Strategic Defense Review (SDR), the Armed Forces Development Plan and the State Program for Armaments and Military Equipment Modernization state the exact quantitative indicators of the required funds, which are adjusted if necessary to match the current year’s financial resources. Currently, the next round of the SDR has started (2020-2021), after which the plan and program will be revised. [4]

It seems that the government takes a limited approach to public procurement in general, and defence procurement in particular. Scrutiny is not conducted by state agencies but by CSOs. The fact that the National Security Strategy does not provide any direct link to procurement decisions makes the compliance scrutiny impossible. [1]. The Standing Committee on Defence, National Security and Internal Affairs held an international seminar on the Parliamentary Oversight on the Armed Forces in November 2017. The speakers stressed the importance of the parliamentary scrutiny for all the stakeholders, i.e. the parliament, the government, and the public. The change to the parliamentary type of governance would not only sustain the parliamentary oversight towards the defence sector but also contribute to the sustaining of democratic institutions [2].
MoD underlines, that both government agencies and CSOs constantly monitor the procurement made by the RA Ministry of Defense. In particular, in 2019, the RA Audit Chamber audited the procurement made by the RA Ministry of Defense for 2009-2018 and in 2020, the procurement made during 2019 and the first quarter of 2020. During 2019-2020, the State Supervision Service inspected separate procurement cases made by the RA Ministry of Defense during 2019-2020. Procurements of the Ministry of Defense of the Republic of Armenia are audited every year by the Internal Audit Department. [3]. However, there is no evidence that such supervision includes scrutiny of requirements.

The MoD submits a plan of purchases at the beginning of each fiscal year, and the plan is incorporated in the yearly budget. As most of the purchases are considered a state or official secret, the planned purchases are not disclosed to the public. If the committee receives the list of planned purchases and does not consider it exhaustive, it may send a request to the MoD to provide more details on the procurement. In case there are some unplanned purchases, the MoD is responsible to submit the revision of the approved plans justifying the incorporation of new items [1]. Oral consultations with an expert in defence sector confirmed that the MOD provides any additional detail the Standing Committee may need to make decisions in regards to defence purchases [2], However, work needs to be done. The incumbent minister of defence stated, “To reduce and manage corruption risks and enhance integrity norms in the defence sector and armed forces, it is necessary to develop transparent procedures for management – i.e. planning, procurement, consumption, control and accountability – of material and technical resources. These procedures are designed to ensure that resource allocation and capability development, along with synchronization of management and budgetary decisions, as well as logistical sustainability of budgetary programs, and rational decision-making among competing demands are all based on defence strategy priorities” [3].

The 2016 Defence White Paper states: “The Government’s policy is to align Australia’s defence strategy with capabilities and resourcing…” [1]. Complemented by the 2016 Integrated Investment Program, which lays out specific strategic interests and corresponding planned equipment and capability investments [2], the Australian government is strongly linking its force projection plans defined by its future strategy looking out to 2035 with major procurement investments. The Strategy Framework 2018 [3] lays out how government strategic policy, elaborated in the White Paper, Integrated Investment Program, Defence Industry Policy Statement [4], and First Principles Review [5] is translated to outcomes in the annual budget cycle, including procurement requirements, and which forms the rationale for all government procurement without exception. A recent reform [5, p19-30] which aims to strengthen the connection between procurement and defence strategy is the formation of the high-level Strategic Centre is “the senior management structure in Defence that sets priorities, manages resources and is responsible for steering Defence to implement the Government’s defence policies…”. The Centre, which includes the Secretary of the Department of Defence and Chief of the Defence Force, provides “close oversight of the delivery of strategy, development and capability… to achieve Government directed outcomes” [3, p11]. Occasional accusations of high-level political interference have raised questions about whether these procurement requirements are always followed for high-stakes acquisitions (for example, Prime Minister Tony Abbott’s desire to engage the Japanese government for the Future Submarine Program [6]).

The Australian National Audit Office (ANAO) is the main independent audit body which provides regular performance audits on selected defence procurement projects [1] and audits up to 30 major projects in the annual Major Projects Report (MPR) [2]. Funding the MPR was unanimously recommended by the Parliamentary Joint Committee of Public Accounts and Audits (JCPAA) in 2006 as a response to increasingly complex defence procurement processes needing adequate oversight following international best practices [3]. Additional budget for ANAO for the purpose of delivering the MPR was approved in the 2008-09 Federal Budget [4]. Guidelines for the selection of projects to be considered by the MPR, the role and responsibility of defence to provide information, and the role of ANAO in auditing the information are provided by JCPAA in annual Major Projects Report Guidelines [5]. The MPR is a form of assurance review, authorised but not mandated by the Auditor-General Act 1997 [6]. In the 2017-18 MPR, the ANAO explains that a “principal component of project performance examined in this report is progress towards the delivery of capability required by government” [7]. JCPAA also tables a report into the Major Projects Report and makes recommendations [8]. This capability review, however, only matches capability elements previously approved for projects to how many capability elements have been delivered – for example, whether equipment identified as necessary has been put into service, or whether a completed naval vessel is operable with a helicopter platform as laid out – rather than investigating whether the procurement decision was justified in the first place. Additionally, the MPR does not scrutinise all the major capital investments in defence; for 2018-19 the MPR scrutinised projects worth 57% of the total budget for capital investments [7, p4]. Parliament, through the writing of White Papers and other government policy and the development of the Defence Budget, sets the standards on which procurement decisions are made and specifically funds major investments. However, both the JCPAA and the Joint Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade (JSCFADT) have repeatedly noted that getting complete information from Defence on the progress of projects is difficult. The JSCFADT tabled a report in November 2018 assailing its lack of access to classified and other information that would lead to more effective oversight. The report proposed splitting the Defence and Foreign Affairs and Trade functions of the JSCFADT into two separate Joint Committees, with the Defence Committee having access to classified information as the Parliamentary Joint Committee on Intelligence and Security currently has [9]. Both the JCPAA [10] and the JSCFADT [11, 12] have the authority to, but are not required to, inquire into or report on any matters relating to their remit, with the JCPAA having more developed oversight roles and rights. A federal politician interviewee indicated that there was “little scrutiny” in Parliament of the connection between government-set strategy and procurement [13].

Final defence procurement decisions are made by the Capability Acquisition and Sustainment Group (CASG) within the Department of Defence [1]. The Defence Procurement Policy Manual (DPPM) [2] and Commonwealth Procurement Rules (CPRs) [3] set out the rules by which the CASG make procurement decisions [4]. The “value for money” rule is “the core rule of the [CPRs] as it is critical to ensuring that public resources are used in the most efficient, effective, ethical and economic manner” [3, p5]. The DPPM states: “Under [the value for money] framework, procurements should… be commensurate with the scale and scope of the business requirement” [2, p12]. Defence business requirements are informed primarily by the national defence and security strategies, as outlined in the Strategy Framework 2018 [5].

According to experts, procurement requirements are reflected in the Military Doctrine. At the same time, however, reality shows that Azerbaijan is also implementing political-based procurement. For example, military-technical cooperation with Russia can be an example (1, 2). Azerbaijan imports weapons and ammunition from Russia which cost billions of dollars. Such procurement is regarded as reciprocal to Russia’s support to the incumbent Government and the weapons and ammunition sold are not of high quality. It is possible to buy with the same expenses products of higher quality from other countries (3, 4).
According to the Military Doctrine (5) adopted in 2010 (Article 62), the supply policy for the military-economic, military-technical and other needs of military structures is being formed and implemented. According to Article 63, the Procurement Policy covers measures to meet the needs of military structures for defence products (military equipment, weapons, engineering equipment, their parts, ammunition and other defence products and other materials, works and services).
Article 64 states that the procurement policy is aimed at:
• Preparation and implementation of the State Defence Order Program, which reflects the need for Armed Forces and other military structures in defence products;
• Obtaining new technologies in accordance with the State Defence Order Program
creation of modern production areas;
• Providing technical support to maintain the combat potential of the Armed Forces and other military structures at a high level of readiness.
According to Article 65, the State Defence Order Program provides for short-term and medium-term prospects for customers of defence products in order to strengthen their defence capacity in accordance with threats and risks in the National Security Concept and the Military Doctrine.
Article 66 states that the national defence industry is developing to meet the needs of the Armed Forces and other military units in defence products.
Article 67 states that private investment and entrepreneurship involvement in the defence industry will be part of the ongoing reforms and complex reconstruction. The goal is to use the available resources and to apply new modern technologies to strengthen Defence Capability.
According to Article 68, the defence industry is being developed in coherence with other areas of the economy. Military infrastructure facilities are being developed across the country to ensure military security effectively (Article 69).
According to Article 70, defence industry development program is implemented in two directions:
• meeting the needs of the Armed Forces and other military units for defence products;
• Implementation of modern technologies in the defence industry, creation of service infrastructure, as well as sales and technical upgrading services to domestic and international customers. The goal is to provide competitive products to local and global markets.
According to Article 71, in line with the State Defence Order Program for strengthening the defence capability of the Armed Forces and other military structures Azerbaijan establishes and expands military-technical cooperation with partner countries for the purpose of obtaining new technologies and creating modern production areas.
According to the Statute (6) of the Ministry of Defence Industry (Article 7.2), the Ministry prepares and submits to the Cabinet of Ministers a draft of the State Defence Order Program on military equipment, weapons, engineering equipment, spare parts, ammunition and other defence products.
According to Article 7.4, the Ministry provides, within the scope of its competence, set up, manufacture, upgrade, repair, utilize, import and export defence products in accordance with the approved State Defence Order Program.
According to Article 7.5, the Ministry makes proposals on the formulation of the state budget in accordance with existing legislation on the funds required for the implementation of the State Defence Order Program.
According to the latest data from the Ministry of Defence Industry, in 2018 it is planned to conduct experimental-design work on 127 items covering 118 issues in the ministry’s facilities. The work will cover 181 stages. It is planned to create a range of weapons and ammunition. It will be implemented in accordance with the State Defence Order Program. (7).

Experts believe that currently there is no independent investigation of actual purchases. If such work is carried out within the government, then it is vsecret and neither the parliament nor the public is informed about it (1, 2).

According to the Statute of the Ministry of Defence Industry procurement is carried out per the State Defence Order Program (1).
Although the Military Doctrine specifies requirements for procurement (2), these are very general. Strategic procurement goals are unclear because the Armed Forces of Azerbaijan have no strategy for building their capabilities. Years ago, Azerbaijani officials were talking about building an army according to NATO standards, which is reflected in the National Security Concept. At present, officials are talking about army building according to Azerbaijan’s specific standards.
At the same time reality shows that Azerbaijan is also implementing political-based procurement. For example, military-technical cooperation with Russia can be an example (3, 4). Minister of Defence Zakir Hasanov said at a press conference that if the Ministry of Defence needed any weaponry and military equipment, their list would be prepared, sent to other state agencies, and they would purchase military equipment (5). The Ministry of Defence base at least their major purchases on clearly identified requirements, but there are opportunistic and unplanned purchases. This can be seen in the UNROCA Azerbaijan report (6).

No defence strategy exists, and therefore, procurement, is not derived from a defence strategy. There is no process of defining the requirements and procurement assessment in general [1, 2, 3].

According to our sources, there is no scrutiny, internal or external over procurement [1, 2, 3]. The Supreme Defence Council does not play a role in scrutiny of procurement, rather it decides on general issues. Although its rules may include the ability to scrutinize, it does not have much effect on the scrutiny process.

As there is no national defence strategy, the purchases are by default made outside a strategy [1, 2, 3].

Bangladesh does not have a formal national security or defence strategy. The second defence policy was approved in 2018, after a long gap since the first, which was formulated in 1974. The Forces Goal 2030, formulated in 2012 [1], is a new operating document, focussing on the services’ prospective plans to restructure its weapon systems, trained personnel and supporting logistics.

When it comes to formulating the annual defence budget, requirements are determined at the services’ headquarters before being forwarded to the Ministry of Defence (MoD). The MoD submits these requirements to the Ministry of Finance, following the necessary scrutiny, which is based on discussions with the services’ headquarters [2]. The Ministry of Finance then discusses the figures with the MoD and representatives of the services’ headquarters again before tabling the budget.

There is therefore active interaction with representatives of the defence forces during each stage of the process. The DGDP website contains an old (2019) partial ‘wish list’ of items, such as medical supplies, stationery and some military equipment and hardware [3]. In the proposed budget for 2021-22, the amount allocated for defence increased by 11.3% compared to the outgoing revised budget for the 2020-21 fiscal year [4]. In the absence of an official document, it was not possible to fully ascertain whether this increase in defence allocation is linked to the Forces Goal 2030 objectives.

Both the D-10 (Budget) and D-20 (Audit) sections within the Ministry of Defence [1,2] scrutinise the annual budget requirements submitted by its 25 entities, which include the Army, Navy and Air Force. This scrutiny is not linked to a defence strategy or white paper, which Bangladesh does not have at this moment.

The Ministry of Defence and Armed Forces Division decide their major purchases based on the clearly identified requirements submitted by various entities such as the Army, Navy and Air Force. There may be cases of politically motivated and unplanned purchases, evidence of which is not publicly available [1].

The Strategic Vision starts out with a detailed analysis of the Belgian security environment up to 2030, and Belgium’s position within this environment [1]. It sets out Belgium Defence’s policy and goals. Based on this analysis, the document outlines the capabilities necesary to fulfill policies and achieve goals. It highlights the gaps in capabilities and presents its procurement plan. Ad hoc procurement only happens on the rarest of occasions and on low budgetary levels, such as the acquisition of face masks in light of the COVID-19 pandemic [2].

First, the Special Committee on Military Sales and Procurement has the right of control on procurement procedures of Belgian Defence [1, 2]. The Minister of Defence notifies the Committee of any procurements exceeding 1.5 million euros. The Committee can then decide to discuss this procurement.

One of the points of discussion, in this case, will be the position of the capability within the national security strategy. Second, the Court of Auditors a posteriori scrutinizes the budgetary side of the procurement process. It can also perform performance audits, which focus on the suitability of the spent budget. One of the requirements in this case may be the necessity of the purchase, as outlined in the national security strategy [3].

The requirements are identified in the Strategic Vision, depending on the national security analysis and the detailed outlined policy and goals for Belgium [1]. These are then given legislative character through a military program law (‘wet der militaire programmering’) and turned into quantified procurement plans [2]. Once the procurement process starts, one of the first steps is to qualitatively and quantitatively define the requirements for each capability in line with the Strategic Vision. These requirements are then taken into account during the decision process. Unplanned purchases are very rare but may occur in either of the following circumstances:

1) ad-hoc events, such as the Covid-19 pandemic [3];
2) unexpected operational engagement as an urgent operational requirement.

In these cases, requirements are clearly stated and the government needs to give its unanimous agreement.

The Defence Review along with the Plan of Development and modernization of the Armed Forces of Bosnia-Herzegovina 2017-2027 are the relevant documents for the planning of procurements; however, they are confidential and therefore it is impossible to assess whether procurement requirements derive from a national defence and security strategy [1]. All public procurements are in line with annual Public Procurement Plan’s which are available at the Ministry of Defence’s (MoD) official website [1, 2].
Even with strategic documents specifying which procurements need to be made, as the MoD’s budget has been limited for years to around 285,5 million BAM (146 million EUR) with oscillation from the average of +/-2% in the last five years and 2/3 of the budget is for the salaries in the MoD and the AFBiH [3, 4, 5, 6, 7], the procurements are made on current yearly needs [2].

There is a scrutiny mechanism in the Auditing Office, an independent institution[1]. The main objective of the Audit Office is to conduct independent audits on budget execution and financial statements, use of resources and management of state property by the Council of Ministers (CoM), budgetary and public institutions in Bosnia and Herzegovina, thereby contributing to reliable reporting on the use of budgetary resources, transparency and quality management of public revenues, expenditures and state property [1]. Audits are conducted yearly. The 2017 report confirmed that “[t]here is no improvement in the process of management and coordination of projects funded from donor funds, and a low rate of realization of it was again noted. The issue of disposing of military assets has not yet been resolved. […] Recognizing weaknesses in the planning, recording and realization of capital expenditures are again recognised. […].” The process of managing and coordinating public procurement processes of IT equipment has not been improved because they are not carried out following the annual plans. The several-year capital project “Repair of helicopters” has not yet been completed. The Auditing Office verifies that the stated procurements have occurred and has public procurements under some scrutiny [2].

The MoD’s budget has been limited for years to around 285.5 million BAM (146 million EUR) with a variation from of +/-2% in the last 5 years; 2/3 of the budget is for the salaries in the MoD and the armed forces [1, 2, 3, 4, 5], the procurements are planned and made on needs expressed by different sectors [6]. However, audit reports show that the planning in the MoD is weak and that changes in the procurement plan are made [7], which shows unplanned purchases and also would allow opportunistic purchases. The changes in the procurement plan are not justified as it is not required by law.

According to the government reviewer, the expression of needs in the MoD and AFBiH is specifically defined in Rule 02/18, and as a result, the Public Procurement Plan. Changes to the Public Procurement Plan are the result of additionally stated requirements; most often, because the budget alone is not sufficient to procure all the necessary goods or services that would satisfy the AFBiH. For example, the age of the vehicle fleet in the AFBiH makes it impossible to anticipate all procurement needs. In the part where procurement is planned from the available funds, there are specifications with the list of goods, the quantity, as well as the TTU with which to move into the procurement process. There is a need to improve and move on to this part. As soon as the IT modules are fully completed and applicable, this part will be eliminated and this activity is ongoing.

There is no official Defence Strategy in Botswana. As such, procurement requirements are not derived from the Defence Strategy [1]. For example, BDF through Seleka Springs – a company owned by Khama brothers, Tshekedi and Anthony- procured the 50 Steyr SK-105 Kürassier light tank 105mm and Steyr SK105 4K7-FA recovery tanks from Austria in 2001 [1]. Since they were procured, the tanks are said to have been neglected although they have clocked very low mileage [2]. The tanks were decommissioned in 2015. The other obsolete military equipment, with questions about the necessity of securing, is the 105 mm artillery guns [2]. In response, The Office of the President (OP) is said to have instructed the Ministry of Defence, Justice and Security to investigate how the tanks were procured and why they were decommissioned. If there was a well-defined procurement plan derived from a national defence and security strategy buttressed a sound audit, this procurement would have most likely been flagged on time [2].

There is no defence strategy in Botswana, so purchases are not justified with regards to their alignment to a strategy. In terms of general scrutiny, this is done by the Directorate on Corruption and Economic Crime [1]. The Auditor General does not specifically audit the BDF, though this may be done at any time. However, the Auditor General publishes audit reports based on the umbrella ministry. For example, in 2018, the Auditor General published that the utilisation of funds warranted to the Ministry for the financial year ended 31 March 2018 is indicated below:-
Warranted Actual Under –
Dept Provision Expenditure Expenditure %
Headquarters 103 173 459 99 546 667 -3 626 792 4
BDF 2 923 778 110 2 900 657 067 -23 121 043 1 [2].
As mentioned, there is no BDF Defence Strategy, however, in terms of the requests for procurement for BDF that are published on the PPADB website, have clearly identified and quantified requirements.

Procurement requirements are generally conducted in terms of identifiable quantities that are published in terms of the PPAD Act [1]. In most cases, these purchases can easily be accessible and at least on the face of it, one can determine the nature of the purchases and their aggregated amounts [2]. These purchases are published on the PPADB website. The procedures of procurement are not exclusive to BDF but are of general application as provided by the PPADB Act.

The National Defence Strategy establishes several general criteria for acquisitions in defence, related to the main strategic needs of each single force [1]. However, the strategy is still too general and only sets out the need to elaborate a Strategic Acquisitions Plan, which has been being created since 2012; it is expected to be finished in 2021 [2].

The Federal Court of Auditors (TCU) often audits purchases and programs of the Brazilian Armed Forces evaluating if they are aligned with national defence interests, but this is not the main focus of the institution, which is to verify the accounts of public institutions [1].

The assessor found no evidence of important purchases made regardless of the National Defence Strategy, defining in the public bidding calling for exact quantities and requirements [1, 2]. However, the reviewers agree that the military might have succeeded in “opportunistic purchases”, whether by including them in the defence strategies; or being successful by including one acquisition that was not in any plan, which was the case during the acquisition of the HMS Ocean (in Brazil PHM Atlantico) from the UK.

There is very little evidence on if defence procurement requirements derive from a national defence and security strategy. However, according to the provisions of Article 19 of the Law No. 039 (2016), “the nature and scope of the items to purchase are determined with precision by the contracting authorities prior to launching any call for an opened competition of bids, or any negotiation process in the case of a direct public contract, at the beginning of each budget year, through an annual procurement and contracting plan” (1). It can be inferred that the identification of nature and the scope of the defence items to be purchased is made based on the content of the existing national defence and security strategy of Burkina Faso. For example, DCAF (2010), declares that the “focus of the current defence strategy, adopted by Decree No. 146 (2004), is internal security, particularly civil defence: protection of the population and goods, maintaining law and order, and the preservation of a continuity of government’s action” (P7) (3).

There is no evidence that oversight institutions perform any scrutiny of the defence sector, as to whether its procurement requirements derive from the existing defence and security strategy. It is difficult to access to government information in general, and to that of the defence ministry, in particular (2). Besides, some items covered by “defence secret”, mentioned by Article 6 (1) of the Law No. 039, makes it difficult for the defence institutions to comply with the publicity requirement of Article 21 of the Law No. 039, and yet, for oversight institutions to scrutinize their purchase (1). This would also mean that a large number of defence purchases just escape from scrutinity. Additionally, oversight institutions (Parliament, Supreme Audit Institution, ASCE-LC and ARMP) are weak (3), (4)

Purchases are made outside the national strategy. For example, in May 2018, the government purchased 59 vehicles (1), which were not planned in the annual budget. The announcement of the purchase resulted in huge debates within the political arena, civil society, and the media, with some considering the acquisition as opportunistic. Many have argued that the country faces lots of economic, social and security challenges that need to be addressed instead of providing luxuries to government members (2). According to the Executive Secretary of the National Anti-Corruption Network (REN-LAC), the military always purchases items outside of the national strategy. “The military does not have any purchase policy or plan, and there is not an internal newspaper for the recording of the purchases they make either” (3).

It is impossible to assess whether procurement requirements derive from a national defence and security strategy, as the defence strategy is secret so it is impossible to verify how procurement requirements are derived. The strategy is unlikely to be relevant to current threats. Cameroonian defence procurement seems to be reactive and based on current and emerging national security threats, primarily the Boko Haram conflict in the north of the country.

The defence strategy of Cameroon since independence has been based on the concept of popular defence. The document on this concept, however, remains secret and is unknown even to some military personnel, making it difficult to elicit what it contains and how it relates to procurement decisions [1].

Even if this document contains a clearly defined strategy, it was produced in the 1970s and would not address new threats like transnational organised crimes, human trafficking, piracy, armed robbery at sea and the escalation of terrorism, especially by the Boko Haram terrorist group [1] [2].

Journal du Cameroon states, “Cameroon has become Africa’s sixth largest importer of heavy weapons, according to the latest report of the National Institute for Peace in Stockholm” [1].

The SIPRI Arms Transfer Database states, “Fighting with Boko Haram is directly related to arms imports in Nigeria and Cameroon” [3]. The details of each known arms transfer to Cameroon can be obtained by searching this database (2015-2018).

International Crisis Group (2016) states, “The technological modernisation of the Cameroonian army poses a question about the role it will play once the Boko Haram crisis is over. With 60,000 troops and henceforth well-equipped, the army could be too large for peaceful times, while military equipment maintenance costs could have an impact on public investment. The government should plan a freeze on army recruitment for some time – except for those members of vigilante groups who meet the age and educational criteria – and then restart recruitment at a pre-war pace once budget resources permit” [4]. This suggests that defence procurement is reactive and based on current threats (i.e. Boko Haram) as opposed to derived from a well-established national defence and security strategy.

Defence and security procurement in Cameroon is conducted in secret without oversight, often with the direct involvement of the President. No evidence could be found that the Ministry of Finance provides any oversight. There is no evidence that any scrutiny is conducted of actual defence purchases to ensure they are in line with the national security strategy, which remains a secret. However, the assessor’s interviewee suggests there is some oversight, provided by the Ministry of Finance [1] [2].

The Ministry of Defence has a yearly budget that it defends in Parliament. Once the budget has been defended it becomes law and is published in the official National Gazette [1]. However, details of this budget are not clearly spelt out, especially when it comes to what is referred to as ‘secret items’ (Special Contracts) as per Articles 71 and 4 of the Public Procurement Code (2018) [2]. As a consequence, planned and actual defence purchases are not made public, so it is difficult to know if such purchases are in line with the strategy.

Procurement requirements in terms of the high level list of items needed by the Department of National Defence (DND) is directly related to the priorities outlined in Canada’s Defence Policy. [1] Annex B in the policy provides an overview of long-term funding commitments to Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) capabilites based on needs. [2] All defence procurement is directly informed by the needs assessments conducted by the various branches of the CAF as well as those capability gaps identified by DND. [3] [4]

Scrunity is actively conducted by a number of legally or constitutionally mandated oversight mechanisms, some of which are parliamentary committees, the Office of the Procurement Ombudsman, and the Office of the Auditor General. There is also an Independent Review Panel for Defence Acquisition that is part of the National Defence and CAF Portfolio. [1] It has been argued that procurement decisions are ‘over-audited’, which can slow down the process and create added layers of bureaucracy for industry and commercial bidders for contracts with DND and the CAF. [2] While the process is cumbersome and heavily regulated, in a recent (December 2020) Canadian Global Affairs Institute report entitled ‘Financing Defence Procurement in Canada: Where is the Oversight?’ it is argued that “in light of the current project approval processes, including its own contracting policy, when it comes to major defence projects some might argue that the oversight of critical financing aspects is lacking or inadequate. In particular, the TB approval process is arguably too disconnected, too little and too late, leaving serious gaps into which complex procurements are likely to fall.” [3]

Canada’s defence purchases follow security objectives published in ‘defence white papers’ that identify the requirements necessary to fill the needs identified within an ever-changing international environment. [1] [2] The most recent ‘defence white paper’ is “Stong Secure, Engaged: Canada’s Defence Policy”. [3] An overview of long-term funding commitment to CAF capabilities is listed in its Annex B. [4] However, the potential does exist for opportunistic and unplanned purchases. The reported sole-sourced purchase of pandemic-related field hospitals has been questioned as such by media. [5]

According to Article 5 Section g) of Law 20424 (Organic Bylaws of the National Defence Ministry), the Minister of Defence “proposes acquisition and investment projects regarding war material, to the President of the Republic, whenever it corresponds” [1, 2]. There does not seem to be any legally binding requirements to tie procurement to a national defence strategy. However, Chile does possess a National Defence Strategy, incorporated into the 2017 Chilean White Paper on National Defence [3, 4]. This document sets out a national goal of creating a “System of Planning, Programming, and Budgeting” but, from all available evidence, this is at best an aspiration. The system itself is not yet in force or concluded. The White Paper deals with the system entirely in the conditional and future tense. Page 121 states: “Since Law 20424 allows us to define a planning cycle with a defined deadline that coincides with each Presidential term, a trial period [periodo de marcha blanca] for the implementation programme could last from 2018 to 2022” (emphasis added). It continues: “once adjustments have been made (…) the new methodology for Defence planning based in capabilities could finally enter intro force” (emphasis added).

The White Paper puts 2022 as a target date, but my review has been unable to find any publically available follow up to this process since 2017. It should also be noted that Chile has the intention of improving in this regard going forward.

Formally, oversight of procurement in the defence sector has been conducted by the Special Commission of Defense in Congress, by the General Comptroller, and the internal audit offices in the Ministry of National Defence (MDN) and the armed forces. While these arrangements are still operational, their effectiveness has been limited. For one, Congress has not been part of strategic decisions on procurement and acquisitions [1], and legislators have substantial limitations in the oversight of resources designated to items deemed “confidential” [2, 3]. The opportunity for self-regulation has given the armed forces a great deal of discretion in procurement decisions [4]. The General Comptroller performs special audits to procurement in the armed forces; however, he is unable to comment on the “merit” of decisions, and its oversight is exclusively procedural.

As mentioned in 63A, there are no set of rules in force for tying purchases to a national defence strategy; this means that “purchases often are outside of the national strategy” [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7]. However, the existence of a plan to change this and the political will to set up a planning system means that, at least as an aspiration, purchases may not be opportunistic in nature.

Ιn broad terms, China’s weapons procurement is aligned with the strategic priorities and goals presented in its Defence White Papers. For instance, purchases of deep water, power projection, long range, drones and cyber warfare systems reflect the goals outlined in the 2019 White Paper. [1] However, no other procurement is explicitly justified, which creates ample space for opportunistic purchases and corruption. Since 2016, China has been trying to modernise its procurement system, [2] but it is very unlikely that this will involve more transparency, as military modernisation matters are treated with secrecy. The introduction of the plap.cv and weain.mil.cn platforms has slightly improved transparency, especially for mundane (non-weapons) procurement, but one would need to go through thousands of tender and single-source procurement announcements and evaluate them one by one to gauge their rationale.

Τhere is no evidence of external scrutiny of actual purchases to ensure that they fall under the national defence strategy by any non-military oversight mechanisms. China’s procurement process has been characterised as ineffective and in need of reform as, among other weaknesses, it is prone to corruption. [1] It should be noted that there is only an internal mechanism under the DIC. [2]

With the existing degree of transparency in budgets [1] and procurement processes we cannot make a safe assessment on the existence of opportunistic purchases. These may exist especially in relation to non-weapons procurement and in single-sourcing purchases, which are considerable (refer to question Q64). Regarding major weapons systems, purchases of deep water, power projection, long range, drones and cyber warfare systems broadly align with China’s publicly stated goals in official White Papers. [2] Given, however, that there is no independent scrutiny of the process from bodies outside the Party and PLA apparatus, no transparency and no checks and balances involving other branches of government, opportunistic purchases cannot be ruled out.

Every four years the Government of Colombia designs the Defence and Security Policy. This document contains the Strategic Guidelines of the State and an Approach to Security to be implemented. The 2019 Strategy sets out 7 strategic objectives related to institutional control of the territory, the defence of the environment and natural resources, innovation and internal strengthening in administrative and management matters, expansion and professionalisation of members of the Military Forces and Police, and expand the operational capacity of Military Forces to respond to extra-hemispheric and internal threats. [1, 2] It is evident in this policy document that none of these strategic objectives has an approach to hiring and procurement, nor does it have one-off goals related to these processes as a part of the Plan. Strategy and individual acquisitions and engagements are not clearly linked. There is also the Organisational and Equipment Tables (TOE) which contains the mission of each unit and its essential tasks; the doctrine that underpins unity; organisational structure; functionality; and the resources to develop the mission, including personnel, materials and equipment, and infrastructure that must be acquired in order to fulfill the mission of the unit. [3] There is also the National Police Reference Units, as defined in Decree 1512 of 2000 in Articles 25 and 29, which includes “provisions aimed at determining the mission, organization, capabilities and endowments of the various components of the Military Forces.” [4] Finally, the Annual Procurement Plan defines requirements for acquisitions and hiring on an annual basis for each of the forces. Although these planning documents exist, as a result of ongoing security issues and conflict in the country, unplanned procurement ocurrs, and the use of reserved expenses makes it difficult to ascertain whether those procurements using reserved expenses are in line with overall defence strategy.

The process of monitoring or counting the acquisitions or procurement carried out by the Ministry of Defence, Military Forces, and Police falls into three categories: the Comptroller General of the Nation carries out fiscal control, [1] assessing cquisitions and contractings of reserved and unreserved expenditures; the Ministry of Defence, Military Forces, and Police carry out their own internal control mechanisms; [2] and finally the Congress of the Republic of Colombia carries out political control over the monitoring process. [3] The scrutiny of fiscal control and internal control are based on the planning instruments for the acquisition of goods and services and supervision in the execution of contracts, such as monitoring the budget, monitoring of the procurement plan and the contractual processes defined in each budgetary term. Elements such as delivery and quality of inputs, budgetary expenditure, and use of public resources by contractors are taken into account. Political control is more focused on conjunctural monitoring and political responsibility in decision-making that affect the development of defence policy by the Executive and Military Forces and Police, but does not generate careful control around hiring, procurement, or signing of contracts. [4] It is not clear how these control authorities evaluate the implementation of the defence strategy within procurement, nor the impact of the implementation of defence vs. spending.

In terms of procurement, the defence sector develops these activities taking into account the annual procurement plan or annual acquisitions plan. The resources with which the contractual process is carried out are through ordinary resources or non-reserved resources. Therefore, all purchases are planned on an annual basis. [1] It has not been possible to find further evidence which would allow an analyis of whether purchases are made in line with requirements and the larger defence strategy. As such, this indicator is not scored and is scored ‘Not Enough Information’.

The Military Planning Act for 2016-2020 (Loi de Programmation Militaire, LPM 2016-2020) was adopted on January 4, 2016. However, the LPM is perceived as a general roadmap for defence policy through 2020. It is too weak and vague as a policy document for public officials to be able to derive any kind of “clearly identified and qualified” procurement requirements. The National Assembly website has characterized the LPM as follows:

“The LPM adopted by the deputies will determine the resources that the country intends to devote to defense over the next five years in order to have an operational and professional army by 2020. The Military Planning Act will also determine the human resources of the armed forces of Côte d’Ivoire. It is the first time that Côte d’Ivoire has adopted a military programming act” (1).

The LPM 2016-2020 consists of 20 articles drafted with the help of a US-based consultancy (Jefferson Waterman International), which was hired as a special advisor to the President. The then Minister of Defence Paul Koffi Koffi stated that the LPM should serve as a “rough” budgetary tool for expenditure. The LPM has allocated a total of 2,254 billion FCFA to the different military budgets through 2020, up from the previous figure of 6.4 billion FCFA. About 1,453 billion FCFA, or 60%, have been allocated to operational costs. Another 800 billion FCFA has been allocated to investments, including procurement costs. The planned increase in expenditure is based on the need to reequip the armed forces, to strengthen border security and to fight against jihadist terrorism, as well as to cut back on the number of personnel (2), (3). Based on the broad-based nature of the LPM 2016-2020, it cannot serve as a strategy to derive strict procurement requirements from suppliers and vendors. The National Security Council identifies security needs and plans expenses but there are no specific strategies (4).

No evidence of published audits by oversight mechanisms (NA, Commission de Securité et Défense, Inspection Générale des Armées, Cour des Comptes) that would confirm that the procurement has been carried out in accordance with the LPM 2016-2020. The evidence of defence procurement indicates that urgency is often more important than oversight mechanisms or policy guidelines. As shown in 59B, the executive can disburse special funds to procure military equipment and bypass oversight mechanisms whenever a security threat arises. This was the case after the terrorist attack at Grand Bassam on March 13, 2016. Laurent Touchard, in an excerpt from his book on African Armed Forces, described the disbursement of USD 137.8 million as follows:

“A month after the attack on Grand-Bassam, President Alassane Ouattara announced the disbursement of USD 137.8 million. The envelope was intended especially for the purchase of equipment dedicated to counterterrorism, including electronic sensors, ballistic protections and vehicles” (1).

Given the absence of published audits and reports by oversight mechanisms regarding defence purchases and transactions, no evidence of oversight scrutiny may be justified.

The evidence points to an opportunistic policy that does not strictly follow the policy guidelines of the LPM 2016-2020. As a result, the purchases of armored vehicles, patrol boats, helicopters and other equipment seem to respond to immediate needs, such as the case cited by Lauren Touchard in his book on African Armed Forces, in which he describes how President Ouattara spent USD 137.8 million after the terrorist attack at Grand Bassam on 13 March 2016 (1). Another example of the opportunistic nature of defence purchases is the information cited in 59B regarding the illicit ordering of military equipment by the Ivorian Executive in 2015 despite a UN embargo that was still in force in Côte d’Ivoire. According to a leaked dispatch by the French DGSE (Direction Générale de la Sécurité Extérieure), President Ouattara ordered USD 120 million worth of military equipment through his counterpart in Benin, President Yayi Boni. (2)

“President Ouattara, who felt a real need to equip his army, faced a double threat inside and outside, and opened [a back channel] at the beginning of January 2015 with his Benin counterpart to obtain from him a paid support for an extrabudgetary acquisition of military equipment (weapons of war and military equipment subject to UN embargo)… a first meeting was held on April 13, 2014 in Abidjan and recorded as a pre-secret agreement sealed between the Minister of National Defense of Benin Théophile Yarou and his Ivorian counterpart Paul Koffi Koffi for the extrabudgetary acquisition of weapons and military equipment personally covered by President Yayi Boni for a total amount of $ 120,000,000 for the Republican Forces of Côte d’Ivoire (FRCI)” (2).

There is certainly no evidence that the MoD and the armed forces have based their major purchases on clearly identified requirements.

The Defence Agreement determines the overall direction for the Defence. Connections between larger procurements and defence strategy are made specifically in the Defence Agreement [1]. The document “Outline of Planned Larger Material Acquisitions and Material Service Tasks” (“Oversigt over planlagt større materielinvesteringer og materieldriftsopgaver”), written by DALO, provides a comprehensive picture of planned procurements and service tasks. Although explicit connections to defence strategy are minor, the document as such functions as a translation of the direction set in the Defence Agreement, the needs of the Defence as articulated by Defence Command, the operational staffs, or other authorities within the combine of the Ministry of Defence [2, 3]. In collaboration with the customer, DALO formulates the specific requirements that the Defence imposes for new material [4].

Research found no legally or constitutionally mandated oversight mechanisms that specifically scrutinise all procurements in relation to national security strategy [1]. However, as the Danish National Audit Office audits the Defence and conducts investigations into defence matters, DNAO may also cover this area. For instance, DNAO reviewed the Ministry of Defence’s methodological approach to the production of the background material to the political decision making of the latest fighter aircraft procurement [2]. One of these issues dealt with the Ministry’s calculation of the number of aircrafts needed to fulfill the political ambitions put forth in the Defence Agreement. Financial scrutiny can be said to lie with the parliamentary Finance Committee as the committee must approve procurements that are not already included in the Defence Agreement or procurements that exceeds 60 million DKK [3]. As the Defence Comittee conducts parliamentary overisght of the defence domain, the committee may also scrutinise procurements and national security strategy [4]. As the Defence Agreement is a political agreement reached in parliament, Parliament as such can be said to have a scrutinising role in ensuring that procurements are in line with the politically agreed defence policy.

Ministry of Defence tenders on the state tender website, udbud.dk, demonstrate that purchases are based on clearly identified and quantified technical requirements [1, 2].Tenders are accompanied by documents that specify requirements, tender conditions, etc. These are publicly available. Research indicates that only major procurements are communicated on the DALO website where the requirements’ relations to national strategy are articulated in summary form [3]. The annual report of DALO also makes ad hoc connections between material investments and the tasks of the Defence [4]. Research found it impossible and unimportant to assess whether smaller purchases such as sniper rifle scopes [5] are made in accordance with national strategy.

According to our sources, defence strategy and policy is not available to the public. However, they have confirmed that procurement requirements are not derived from defence and security strategies (1),(2), (3).

There are no particular laws for defence procurements, therefore what applies to the general government should apply to the defence sector, the wide exceptions granted to the defence sector provided for in the law and the current balance of power means that effective scrutiny is at best very minimal. For example, Law 204 of 1957 grants arms purchases all sorts of exceptions from any form of ex-ante scrutiny from the MOF or ex-post scrutiny from the CAA (1); the Public Authorities Contracts Law no. 182 of 2018 grants the MOD and the MMP the power to make bidding processes secret (2) and the president who almost always has a military background has the power to appoint and sack the president of the CAA. Al-Sisi exercised this power the only time when the CAA’s president openly questioned the privileges granted to the security and defence sector in avoiding scrutiny (3).

Defence policies and strategies are never made public in Egypt; therefore, it is impossible to assess whether purchases are planned and/or included in a policy or a strategy (1), (2).

The overall direction of expenditures in the defence sector is stipulated in the ten-year Development Plan, which is reviewed every four years. The plan is approved by many parties and adding major exceptions is difficult, although it has been previously done. [1] The Development Plan is the basic document that lists the main goals and resources needed to fulfil those goals. Along with the Development Plan, a four-year Procurement Plan, an Infrastructure Plan and a four-year General Equipment Procurement Plan are published, although not for the public. [2] The procurement programmes are then approved by the Minister of Defence. [3] Each procurement is preceded by comprehensive analysis, and specific requirements are compiled. This is usually done by experts from the Defence Forces. Where necessary, experts from other countries and outside the Defence Forces are involved. The Development Plan consists of all the procurement in the upcoming four years. [4]

The National Defence Committee at the Riigikogu reviews the defence budget every year. [1] The Internal Audit Unit of the Ministry of Defence regularly reviews and assesses published procurement documents. [2] The implementation and the reporting of the implementation is scrutinised by the National Audit Office through the Security Committee of the Government of the Republic. [3] The National Audit Office oversees procurement cases in accordance with the law and the annual budget. [4]

The main defence purchases, which are based on priorities, are explained in the Defence Development Plan, and more precisely in the additional document specifically covering procurement. [1] However, this is not made public and therefore it is difficult to assess how clearly they are identified and quantified. [2] On the website of the Ministry of Defence an overview is provided about the main priorities for the year. [3] The ten-year Development Plan [4] explains the overall direction, from which the four-year plans’ more detailed views derive from. However, an analysis by Jonatan Vseviov, who was the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Defence at the time of the publication, states that there has been a huge progress made in terms of detailed defence budget. In those four-year plans the necessary purchases and needs are described in detail. However, the defence budget includes a lot of data that is a state secret, therefore there is naturally a lack of a wide public debate over the budget. [5] Only some principals can be discussed publicly, for example a question about Estonia’s defence budget in general, in comparison with other NATO members. [6] The media regularly covers major defence and security purchases in Estonia. There is constant debate over general defence budget issues that rarely go into detail due to the lack of necessary publicly available data. [1]

The Government’s Defence Report (published approx. every fifth year; following the Government Report of Finnish Foreign and Security Policy [3]) sets the political guidelines for the development of Finland’s defence capabilities that are based on the strategic long-term planning carried out inter alia in the Prime Minister’s Office, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of Defence, and the Defence Forces (all having their respective roles in the planning derived from legislation). [1] Procurement is carried out in line with the strategy so that it advance’s the Defence Forces capability maintenance and development so that the Defence Forces can carry out all of its four tasks specified in legislation. [4] The goal of defence administration’s material policy is to facilitate the cost-efficient supply of troops, updating and maintenance, as well as to ensure that material is available, usable and can be supplemented in emergencies. [5] There are no exceptions to this rule unless e.g. participation in international military missions so requires (that is, if additional procurement is required by the operational realities on the ground). Moreover, defence procurement has to be balanced with the overall state budget meaning that procurement is delayed if other areas of societal policy so require. According the inspection report of the National Audit Office (2017), the planning and supervision of defence procurement is organised in an adequate manner. [2] According to the Government Procurement Strategy, state agencies and institutions as procurement units are responsible for the development of their procurement actitivies and their acquisitions. Individual decisions concerning procurement are done in procurement units within the financial frames provided by the Decree on State Budget (1243/1992) and following the approval authority procedures specified in the agency’s or institute’s rules of procedure. [6] Defence and security procurement is guided by the Material Policy Strategy of the Ministry of Defence. [5]

Major procurement projects need to be accepted by the Parliament, which entails that the relative Parliamentary Committees work on them prior to the Parliament’s decision to either accept or reject the acquisition. This process by the Parliamentary Defence Committee includes comparing procurements against defence white papers and strategies prior to approving. The purchases are evaluated afterwards, for instance, when the Parliament accepts the central State Accounts inspected by the National Audit Office. The National Audit Office has the right to inspect any issue it chooses. The Parliamentary Audit Committee also has the right to deal with an issue of its own choosing, if e.g. defence procurement raises a concern. [1] Moreover, the Ministry of Defence supervises the Defence Forces’ use of the appropriation and the acquisition units have the requirement to organise their internal audit, which reports to the HQ (which then reports to the Ministry of Defence). [2] All of these supervisory structures are operational and e.g. the Audit Office’s reports are available on its website and the documentations of the Parliamentary Committees on their websites. [3, 4, 5]

The State Budget entails an appropriation for material and service acquisition (approx. 1/3 of the total defence budget annually), which cannot be exceeded. Procurement needs to be justified within the Defence Forces and to the Ministry of Defence, the Government, and the Parliament (including the Parliamentary Defence Committee and other appropriate Committees) in respective processes (depending e.g. on the value of the acquisition). In addition, the final State Accounts are inspected by the independent National Audit Office, who also has the right to carry out inspections on the topics it chooses. Getting procurement accepted by these institutions requires that the numbers are correct and purchases justified. In its 2017 inspection on the planning and oversight of the material acquisition projects of the Defence Forces, the National Audit Office found that the Defence Forces procurement processes are adequate, but the level of detail (especially cost estimations and impact assessments) and models used for e.g. cost estimations need be improved. [1] In the Hilma system (public tenders information system), one can examine the future, ongoing and past calls for tenders and procurement decisions. Even if getting the full details of calls and decisions would require registering with the system, it can be extracted from the general descriptions open to public that each call for tenders has specific requirements. [2] The Government’s Defence Report is the main strategic document guiding defence procurement. Acquisition decisions need to be justified in reference to capability development that supports the Defence Forces in fulfilling its four tasks provided in the Act on the Defence Forces, chpt 1, section 2. [3, 4]

Procurement requirements are derived from the Military Programming Law (LPM), that sets strategic orientation and equipment renewal and acquisition objectives for 6 years.
However, the “secrecy of defence” label allows occasions to occur where procurements are not justified based on national strategy.
We have seen that it is common for a defence and security contract to be awarded without publicity or competitive bidding, according to Order n°2015-899 of July 23, 2015 [1] and Decree n°2016-361 of March 25, 2016 on defence and security procurements. [2] It is therefore likely that the contracts allocated outside of the framework defined by the LPM aren’t publicly disclosed, and as such it is hard to assess the frequency of these non-justified procurements.

Scrutiny is conducted on a regular basis by the Defence Committee of the National Assembly, by the Defence and Foreign Affairs Committee of the Senate, and by the Cour des comptes to confirm that procurement is done in line with the national security strategy or that work is undertaken to quantify the need for purchases.

For instance, in 2017, Cour des comptes was vocal in criticising the discrepancy between the planned expenses as stated in both the LPM 2014-2019 and Initial Finance Law (LFI), and the actual expenses of the Ministry of the Armed Forces (MOAF), [1] exposing “the lack of coherence between ambitions and means”. The Cour called on the government to break with this bad habit already observed in previous years and to define a new LPM built “on a sincere and realistic basis”.

In another example from November 2018, the 2019 budget of the armies was agreed upon by the National Assembly after several amendment requests by MPs concerning equipment acquisition and renewal, debated in detail, [2] and a thorough report by MP Cornut-Gentille was released, with details on the equipment acquisitions compared to the objectives of the LPM. [3]

Also, since the latest LPM vote in 2018, twice a year, before the 15th of April and before the 15th of September, the Minister in charge of the armies transmits to the standing committees of the National Assembly and the Senate in charge of defence, as well as to the permanent commissions in charge of finances, a balance sheet of the execution of military programming. [4] This includes:
1 ° An assessment of the execution of the credits programmed by this law for the “Defence” mission;
2 ° An assessment of the implementation of the force equipment policy. This balance sheet lists the orders placed and the deliveries received since the presentation of the previous balance sheet:
– for major impact programs costing more than 70 million Euros;
– for other armaments operations costing more than 20 million Euros;
– for infrastructure programs costing more than 15 million Euros.
This balance sheet shows the expected deliveries within six months of its submission under the same operations and programs.
It includes a statement of the state of progress of armaments operations costing more than 70 million euros, providing, where appropriate, explanations of changes in their order and delivery schedules or the amount of material concerned.
It includes a summary presentation of the investments in support and coherence equipment made during the last six months as well as investment forecasts for the same equipment for the following six months. The first balance sheet submitted pursuant to this section covers orders placed, deliveries received and investments made since the enactment of this Act.

However, scrutiny can be undermined by the tautological meaning given to the “secret-défense” label by the MOAF and intelligence services, and its discretionary use to restrict access to information, making it rather “occasional” than “active”. [5]

The MOAF bases its major purchases on the clearly identified requirements defined in both the yearly Finance Law and the LPM, [1] but there are exceptions. If opportunistic and unplanned purchases do happen, they are hard to monitor : “secrecy of defence” allows for occasions where procurements are not justified based on the national strategy. Moreover, it is common for a defence and security contract to be awarded without publicity or competitive bidding, according to order n°2015-899 of July 23, 2015 [2] and Decree n°2016-361 of March 25, 2016 on defence and security procurements. [3] It is therefore likely that the contracts allocated outside of the framework defined by the LPM aren’t publicly disclosed, and as such it is hard to assess the frequency of these exceptions.

Theoretically, one can compare the actual spending of a specific PAP of the Defence mission in the annual performance report, also called “justification from the first euro”, with the spending planned in the initial finance law deriving from the strategic orientation given by the LPM, on the “public performance” website. [4] But as said before, the layout of this information is rather technical, not explicit and not easy for the public to access and understand.

Procurement requirements are derived from a national defence and security strategy, and there is logical flow down from strategy to individual procurements set out in key security policy documents, which include:

– the White Paper on Security Policy and the Future of the Bundeswehr (2016) [1]
– the Bundeswehr Concept (2018) [2]
– the Bundeswehr capability profile (2018)

These basic security policy documents outline the Bundeswehr’s procurement needs with reference to the strategy. However, it should be noted that the first two documents are largely political papers which contain only vague links between the security policy situation analysis and individual procurement decisions. The Bundeswehr Capability profile is not publicly available.

The defence budget for Germany (‘Einzelplan 14’ – ‘Individual budget 14’) sets the financial framework for the Federal Minister of Defence’s division. For companies that have a business relationship with the German Armed Forces, the Federal Office of Defence Technology and Procurement (BWB) is the contact partner for contract awarding. Based on Article 87b of the German Constitution [3], the BWB’s work covers the complete requirements of the Armed Forces as far as military equipment is concerned. From an organisational point of view, the Federal Office of Defence Technology and Procurement is a civil authority subordinate to the Federal Ministry of Defence (BMVg) Arms Department, responsible for (almost) all military procurement contracts for the Armed Forces. Projects in the fields of information management and information technology are an exception, as these are under the responsibility of the Federal Office for Information Management and Information Technology of the Armed Forces (IT-AmtBw). The BWB is divided into four project departments, which support what is known as the project area. This was set up in 2005 to manage the transformation process and the high technical requirements posed by network-centric warfare (NetOpFü) with regard to equipment and materials. The project departments represent the military tasks in the Armed Forces and the diversity of their requirements. Furthermore, there are three service departments that are responsible for the central administration and the economic and technical tasks of the BWB as well as strategic purchasing for the Armed Forces [4].

There is active scrutiny conducted by a number of legally or constitutionally mandated oversight mechanisms (e.g. the parliamentary oversight committee, the inspector general or the national audit office) to confirm that procurement is in line with national security strategy or that work is undertaken to quantify the need for purchases [1,2]. However, there are also challenges, as described in a 2016 review of weapon procurement by KPMG, which identified 150 concerns and future risks [3,4]. According to the BMVg, this resulted in a full internal audit and the implementation of a mitigation strategy designed to strengthen risk areas [5]. However, since then, there have been continued reports of issues with procurement planning and the acquisition of redundant weapons systems that do not respond to strategic requirements [6,7,8]. Moreover, issues have been raised surrounding the strength of parliamentary scrutiny of the procurement process due to poor parliamentary access to relevant information, over-classification and the fact that Parliament only becomes involved in oversight once projects have been going on for months or even years, as this stifles effective debate and stops formal opposition even though Parliament has that right [9].

The Ministry of Defence and the Armed Forces systematically base all purchases on clearly identified and quantified requirements, which are very detailed, well described and available to the public [1,2,3]. See also Q63A.

Specific requirements are identified and quantified within the Integrated Planning Process, which is organised by the Directorate-General for Planning. Planning parameters are derived from the planning guidelines and the capability requirements. An analysis of financial requirements leads to a resource plan. The units within the BMVg that are responsible for controlling and budget are involved in this process [4,5,6,7,8].

The source of procurement requirements is not clear as the country does not have a national defence and security strategy. The MOD’s budget outlines twelve policy objectives for the MOD, but these are quite vague, therefore it is impossible to verify where procurement requirements are derived from (1), (2), (3), (4).

Scrutiny of actual purchases is undertaken by different institutions that have oversight power over the MOD and the GAF, the Parliamentary Selected Committee on Defence and Interior, the Public Account Committee, and the Audit and Tender Committees in the MOD and the GAF.

In addition, the Public Procurement Authority has the power to enforce compliance within the MOD and the GAF, making sure they both follow regulations, manuals, and guidelines; while the Audit-Service examines the accounts of the MOD and the GAF to ensure value for money.

The lack of a central strategy makes this more complicated. Some items, such as uniforms, are purchased centrally and are therefore subject to greater scrutiny (1), (2), (3), (4).

It is unclear how purchases are identified and quantified as the country does not have a national defence strategy. There are opportunistic and unplanned purchases (1), (2), (3).

The National Defence Policy and the National Military Strategy are classified documents, updated regularly by the MoD, which describe the national defence and security strategy [1, 2]. As a result, procurement requirements derive from these documents, but an official suggests that there may be occasions where justifications for procurement are not based on the national strategy [3]..

There is scrutiny of actual purchases from the Court of Audit for contracts worth over 1 million euros [1]. Consequently, the court produces annual reports describing different cases and explaining decisions [2]. The court does not have access to strategy and cannot assess whether procurement is aligned to it.

The Ministry of Defence and Armed Forces base at least their major purchases on the clearly identified requirements, but there are opportunistic and unplanned purchases, for example the acquisition of 18 Rafale fighter jets from France in 2020 [1, 2]. However it should be noted that this was an exception rather than the rule.

Although the National Security Strategy(NSS) [1] and the National Military Strategy (NMS) [2] of Hungary were approved in 2012, the document is far too vague, and more importantly, outdated to dovetail with the current procurement requirements of the country to the strategies. The new strategies should have been published, but as their quality was insufficient the drafting period was relaunched, and the strategies should be published in early 2019 [3].

Currently, there is no scrutiny of the actual purchases [1]. Members of the Parliamentary Commission have no access to the documents and details of the purchases and, in the rare cases when they have access to the information, they cannot make them public. Based on the audit reports, the State Audit Office (SAO) [2] has not audited purchases in the recent year (they have audited the overall ministry, but that is only a financial audit). Based on source 2, we can conclude that there is no real scrutiny of actual (major) purchases.

Purchases are outside the national strategy [1], and they refer to the Zrinyi 2026 Military Development Plan from 2017 [2].

India currently does not have a public National Security Strategy [1]. This document is reported to be under review within government. The IISS Military Balance 2019 states that the overall capability of the conventional forces is limited by inadequate logistics, maintenance and shortages of ammunition and spare parts. India continues to modernise its conventional military capabilities and its nuclear forces, particularly its delivery systems, but many equipment projects have experienced significant delays and cost overruns, particularly indigenous systems [2]. The government’s ‘Make in India’ policy aims to strengthen the defence-industrial base in line with its core objective of self- reliance.

The MoD does have a procurement planning process which is based around long-term, medium-term and short-term perspectives. The process is as follows:

– (a) 15 years Long Term Integrated Perspective Plan (LTIPP). (b) 5 years Services Capital Acquisition Plan (SCAP). (c) Annual Acquisition Plan (AAP).
– Based on the Defence Planning Guidelines, Headquarters Integrated Defence Staff (HQ IDS), in consultation with the Service Headquarters (SHQs), would formulate the 15 years LTIPP for the Armed Forces.
– The Five Year Defence Plans for the Services would also be formulated, by HQ IDS, which would include requirements for the next five years under the SCAP. The SCAP should indicate the list of equipment to be acquired, keeping in view operational exigencies and the likely availability of funds. – The planning process would be under the overall guidance of the Defence Acquisition Council (DAC); its decisions, as approved by the Defence Minister, will flow down for implementation to the Defence Procurement Board (DPB) (3)(4).

There has been criticism in inner circles that in the absence of defence acquisition training for personnel involved in procurement, the procurement procedure has its flaws.

The Modi government has started to streamline national security planning. This includes the establishment of a Defence Planning Committee (DPC) comprising the chairman of the chiefs of staff committee, three service chiefs, the defence, expenditure and foreign secretaries, under the national security adviser; and the formation of the three Tri-Services agencies for cyber, space, and special operations across all branches of the Armed Forces (5)(6).

As alluded to in Q.59, scrutiny is conducted actively by a number of legally or constitutionally mandated oversight mechanisms such as CAG and the Acquisition Wing [1]. According to the DPP-2016, the MoD can exercise its right to conduct an audit of all certifications and costs relevant to indigenous content at all or any stages (tiers) of manufacturing/production/assembly, starting from the prime (main) contractor downwards. The audit(s) could be conducted by the Ministry itself and/or by an agency/institution/officer(s) nominated by the Ministry, as may be decided by the Ministry [2][3][4]. However, the oversight agencies do not generally question the quantity. This scrutiny is the prerogative of the MoD. There is no National Security Strategy against which the quantity can be benchmarked [5][6].

Overall, the MoD seems to base their major purchases on identified requirements on the basis of LTIPP, SCAP and AAPs. “The idea of the defense procurement procedures is to ensure that the armed forces are equipped with the best the country can afford”, according to K.V. Kuber, a New Delhi-based independent defence analyst who has worked on government procurement policies [1]. Revenue and capital procurement are carried out as per the approved plans. The Statement of Case prepared for each procurement is vetted by the Finance Wing of the MoD [2].

In recent years, the government has pushed to increase indigenous content which is a factor in the procurement vendor selection process [3]. Procurement controversies continue such as Rafale [4]. There has been criticism by some that despite sincere efforts by the government, out-of-box measures are needed in improving procurement procedures that are at times, hampered by an over cautious bureaucracy [5]. With the process of streamlining national security planning underway, the country is closer to realising this [6].

Operational requirements in the arms needs plan are prepared on the basis of the 2009-2024 Minimum Essential Force (MEF) defence posture development strategy and its alignment policy, which is established every five years. The preparation of operational requirements in the MEF is adapted to the strategic environment, perceived threats and general defence policies outlined in strategic defence documents, including: the Defence Doctrine, the Planning and Development of National Defence [1], the General Defence Policy (five years) [2,3], the Defence Implementation Policy (five years, detailed every year) [4]and the Ministry of Defence and TNI Strategic Plan (five years) [5], which is detailed in the Budget Requirement Plan and Work Plan for each defence Procurement KPA, namely the Ministry of Defence, TNI Headquarters and the three services of TNI. Generally speaking, all these documents are open and can be adapted to the arms procurement programme every year. In addition to the long-term plan, there is still room for arms procurement through direct purchases in the case of urgent needs that are not included in the MEF or MEF Alignment Policy [6,7]. This requires approval from the DPR, which is essential in providing the additional budget needed. Whether or not the MEF is a logical translation of defence strategic documents remains in question. In essence, the MEF is a long-term plan for the national industry’s captive market and multiannual state funding. However, the MEF Alignment policy reduces the level of certainty. On the other hand, the alignment gives the Ministry of Defence and the TNI the flexibility to respond to more immediate concerns. For example, the plan to procure landing platform docks is changed to hospital ships when a disaster relief task is more prominent.

There is active scrutiny conducted through a number of legally or constitutionally mandated oversight mechanisms (e.g. the Parliamentary Oversight Committee, the Inspector General and the National Audit Office) to confirm that procurement is in line with the national security strategy or that work is being done to quantify the need for purchases. Arms procurement is subject to layered supervision, both internal and external [1]. Internal routine scrutiny is conducted by the Ministry of Defence’s supervisory function, the Office of the Inspectorate General of the Ministry of Defence (Itjen), while scrutiny by the state audit agency can be carried out at the request of the PA (Minister of Defence) and the KPA (Ministry of Defence Organisational Unit, TNI Headquarters and each military branch). The latter scrutiny is generally carried out to examine reports of deviations/indications of irregularities in the procurement process, not to check compliance with procurement requirements. In 2017, the Audit Board of the Republic of Indonesia (BPK) formed a team to conduct an Investigation with a Specific Purpose (PDTT) into the defence equipment within the Ministry of Defence and TNI [1] at the request of the Chief of TNI [2]. During this time, the BPK only completed financial reports or performance audits and did not touch upon material elements (defence equipment).

The strategy for developing defence equipment through rematerialisation, revitalisation, relocation and procurement is generally based on the requirements set out in the RPJMN and MEF [1]. However, since specifications of arms procurement contracts are not open to the public, supervision in the process of translating requirements into specifications and products for procurement is carried out internally by three bodies: the Office of the Inspectorate General of the Ministry of Defence, the Work Results Recipient Committee, which was appointed by the PA KPA to conduct inspections of the TNI arms procurement work results in accordance with the provisions stated in the contract, and the Technical Specifications Evaluation Team, which was established by the PPK to ensure that the Technical Specifications Relevance Test is updated with the latest technological developments and is compliant with operational requirements [2]. Another problem is that the technical specifications compiled by the TNI as the basis for procurement requirements can still change over the course of the year. Under the pretext of changing specifications, the results of the procurement can be cancelled and the procurement process must be repeated. For example, the procurement of six ground-controlled interception radars was delayed until 2018 because its tenders were cancelled in 2015 [3,4]. In 2020, defence minister entertained the public with possibility of opportunistic procurements such, i.e. secondhand Eurofighter jet from Austria [5] and ignoring the already-signed contract of submarine production with South Korea and shift it to Turkey, Russia or France [6].

The defence strategy is not public; therefore, it may be secret. A civil defence national security document was unveiled in October 2014 but was not made public [1]. The Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) has published an assessment of threats to the air defence system, but this is not a fully derived national security strategy [2]. Therefore, it is impossible to verify how procurement requirements are derived.

The Parliament’s Defence Committee [1], as well as the Foreign Policy and National Security Committee [2, 3], seem to be involved in securing defence purchases, particularly those from Russia; however, this involvement could not be classified as scrutiny, but rather, they seem to be involved in securing the contracts. For example, the chairman of the Committee for Foreign Policy and National Security said Iran sees no “political obstacles” for new supplies of Russian weapons, and added that the military was to make decisions on that matter [2].

It is difficult to measure against the national security strategy, given that it is not public, but purchases are often illicit [1, 2], and in this sense tend to be opportunistic in nature (see examples).

Iraq’s existing NSS, the contents of which are discussed but not publicly available, does not appear to inform procurement requirements. An anti-corruption roadmap is to be presented by the anti-corruption council whose formation was ordered by Abdel-Mahdi in late January 2019 (1). The outcome of this was the resuscitation of the Supreme Anti-Corruption Council which has been active in making court referrals but comparatively silent on pre-contractual fraud. The work it conducts lacks transparency at this stage (2), (3), while others state that their activation contravenes with constitutional law’ (2). A legal integrity framework should have been set up months after it’s re-inauguration but no signs of its development are available. No coverage interrogates subsequent steps on the issue by the newly elected council. The level of institutional malfeasance by MoD officials demonstrates that decisions are not always consistent with national needs (4), (5), (6). Despite assurances by former Iraqi prime minister Abadi that defence purchases over the past year would be investigated, little confidence that “clearly identified and quantified requirements” exists. Investigations into corrupt and inflated deals signed with the knowledge of former Iraqi PM, Nouri al Maliki, were never concluded (6). Findings did, however, reveal misallocation of equipment, and cases in which purchases were made not in response to legitimate security needs but to profit opportunities including the resale of military equipment on the black market at inflated costs (7). The MoD, under both Maliki and Abadi’s administration, has been accused of clearing enormous commissions and kickback payments (6), (7). Although the MoD General Directorate of Contract and Sales coordinates military sales, this has not ruled out inconsistencies in procurement decision-making. Conflicting remarks from the Iraqi government concerning deals with Iran (8), neither confirming nor denying the signing of contracts, in violation of UNSC 1747 is one case in point. Decisions rest with the MoD tender committee, as the specialist agency, on paper only, whereas in reality, procurement requirements are not derived from a national security policy. Defence planning over the past 5 years has largely focused on the defeat of the ISG and more recently, securing a lasting defeat against them.

Scrutiny is a right which is exercised by IG offices tied to the respective ministry, who ought to preside over the procurement cycle and defence spending. Ministries are the legally sanctioned entities that are granted powers to approve military sales. Scrutiny of sales has been voiced by members of the Parliamentary Security and Defence Committee (1), (2), (3) lacking, however, the legal standing to undertake secret inspections/audits in absence of a collaborative will between ministries and IG’s. Furthermore, the autonomy afforded to anti-graft bodies has been curbed as anti-graft employees are subject to direct cabinet oversight (4), (5). A former military advisor warned that while statutory bodies exist they exist within institutional fiefdoms wherein procurement exchanges are used to fasten or undue existing alliances (6). By and large, decisions are not publicly disclosed, but scrutiny over them is unlikely in the absence of procedures. In September of this year, head of Rusafa;s Integrity and Money Laundering Court released a statement that testifies to the existence of a whopping 3,000 cases of corruption over the past year; “220 cases of embezzlement, 487 cases of wastage of public money, 81 cases of bribery and 386 cases of employment breaches 132 cases of theft of State funds” (7). Talk of combating corruption has been in tune with the contents of provisions on anti-corruption across Iraqi laws, whereas the reality speaks to ineffective reforms to deal with acute corruption. Contractual fraud represents a grave area of concern for the GOI but coverage of the latest Mitsubishi deal overseen by the IG placed in the MoI reveals scrutiny to be a double edge sword, exercised often after the act, to evade proper scrutiny, a matter which an Iraqi lawyer (8) explains to TI, “is made impossible due to the devolution of power within these ministries. Political connections continue to influence managerial and procurement decision making”. PM AHH vocalised in March of this year The Supreme Anti-Corruption has developed a clear policy”, but no evidence of this is publicly accessible in spite of increased demands from the people for the government to put a stop to the haemorrhaging of public funds”.

The core expenditure of both the Ministry of Defence and Interior is determined by annual budget allocations and the degree of military engagement and required operational activities. In absence of forward planning and the fragility of security in Iraq, procurement and military spending unfolds along with an ad-hoc approach, for which there is no national defence strategy in place to inform procurement requirements. No legal or written evidence shows that decision-making procurement decisions are formalised, which increases the likelihood of opportunistic purchases. Iraq’s potential purchase of a Russian S400 air defence system last year prompted a wide discussion of procurement decision-making by Iraqi officials. Former chair of parliamentary security and defence committee, Hakim al Zamili implied-then that requirements are balanced in the framework of national security, arguing that “Iraq has the right to own cutting-edge weapons to defend its territory and air space” (1). Government spokesman Saad Hadithi has similarly contended that (2) decisions are “subject to the requirements and needs to strengthen the capabilities of Iraqi forces”. In response to US objections against the purchase of the Russian arms deal, Hadithi stressed that the decision was borne not out of political, but rather military and technical considerations. The scandal surrounding the capture of America’s M1 Abrams tanks by Iran-aligned Iraqi militias, caused America to withdraw crucial technical military support (3), pushing Iraq in search of new suppliers, most notably Russia stands out as a preferred bidder due to Iraq’s historical relies of Russian military supplies (4), (5). These above-mentioned cases offer mounting evidence that points to opportunistic purchases. Another crucial detail these cases expose is Iraq’s reliance on foreign allies and their procurement preferences as the ongoing toing and froing of Iraq’s acquisition of the Russian air defence system makes clear.

Procurement requirements are in part derived from the general national defence strategy, however, the security situation in Israel can change from one day to the next, so the requirements also depend on the necessity, but they have to be approved by the committee and need an approval of the cabinet to get the budget (1) (2). The MOD Procurement Department formulates an annual procurement plan, which is based on IDF requirements as defined in the IDF five year budget plan. However, the plan is classified so it is difficult to assess to what extent it derives from the strategy.
The military is not involved in process of procurement; the procurement is conducted by the ministry of defense (3). The Israel Defence Forces (IDF) cannot interfere (which relates to the Ben Gurion Principle – a defence doctrine that embodies three principles, or pillars: deterrence, early warning, and offensive power. These principles are still the cornerstone of Israeli defence) (4) (5). The process is decribed in detail to the public (6). Thus, there is no agreed definition of National Security. Every Security Minister or Chief of Staff define these in different ways. There is no continuity among the ministers and the general staff.

Major procurement transactions or purchase of strategic systems may be subject to the approval of the senior MOD management, as well as of the Minister of Defense, the Government or the Ministers Committee for Acquisition, which is authorized in accordance with the Government decision number 430 of 2020 to supervise and approve certain new development or acquisition plans above NIS 500 million (in a multi-year budget) or NIS 200 million in an annual budget (1). As a result, their oversight is heavily limited to high value acqusitions and omits a signifcant swathe of procurement programmes.
External scrutiny is only occasionally conducted by a number of legally or constitutionally mandated oversight mechanisms (e.g. the parliamentary oversight committee, the inspector general, or the national audit office) to confirm that procurement is done in line with national security strategy or that work is undertaken to quantify the need for purchases (2) (3). Generally, there is not an independent oversight, besides the State Comptroller. But most of his reports are not published. The majority of the the workers in the audit unit in Ministry of Defence were senior officers in the army. The IDF comptroller rank is only Brigadir General and report if to the chief of staff.

The Ministry of Defence and Armed Forces generally base purchases on clearly identified and quantified requirements that are mostly publicly available (1) (2). However, there have been instances of unplanned and opportunistic purchases that do not directly respond to strategic requirmeents, such as the acqusition of submarines for instance (3).

The strategic and financial planning of the Ministry of Defence derives from the “official guidelines” (atto di indirizzo) of the Minister of Defence [1] that defines the political priorities for both the tecnico-operative and tecnico-administrative areas of the Ministry. With specific reference to the Procurement strategy, the Chief of Defence Staff is responsible for the elaboration of the financial and operative planning, balancing all requirements highlighted by the Chiefs of the single branches of the armed forces, according to art. 26 of the Code of the military system [2]. This planning takes the form of the Pluriannual programmatic document with a three-year horizon that is yearly updated [3] and takes into account the financial allocations defined by the annual financial law [4].

The planning of acquisitions is also made mandatory ex. Article 21 of the code for public procurement [5] which obliges public administrations to adopt a biannual plan for the acquisition of goods and services with an estimated unitary cost equal or exceeding the value of 40.000 euro [6] and a three-year plan for public works with an estimated unitary cost equal or exceeding the value of 100.000 euro [7]. In addition, in order to better evaluate the strategic-military context and guidelines on the evolution of the military instrument, the Chief of Defence Staff produced the Strategic concept of the Chief of Defence Staff (Concetto strategico del Capo di Stato Maggiore della Difesa” [8].

According to art. 536 of the Code of the military system [1], the Minister of Defence, by the 30 of April of each year, presents the pluriannual programmatic document to the Parliament. However, the document is just presented to the relevant defence committees and not examined [2]. It is important to note that the relevant parliamentary committees may request informal hearings involving the Chiefs of Staff to assess the operative requirements of the branches of the armed forces [3]. Hence, they excercise scrutiny over major defence procurements, expressing their opinion over the necessity of the procurement, that can be accertained through hearings. Controls over the expenses of the Ministry are undertaken by the Italian General Accounting Office in yearly reports that highlight irregularities on the management of the budget [4].

Requirements for each purchase are specified in the tenders [1] and reported in the contracts [2]. Moreover, contracts are justified in terms of the national defence strategy and their correspondence to the requirements identified at strategic-military level can be checked through the integrative note to the financial law [3], where spent budget for each programme is reported.

Japanese defence policy builds on its national security strategy document, which the Government adopted in 2013. [1] National Defense Program Guidelines (NDPG) advise on how Japan should respond to likely security developments over approximately the next ten years. A new NDPG may be made before ten years have passed, however (see Q2C). The Medium Term Defence Program (MTDP) gives concrete plans for acquisition of arms and equipment in order to implement these guidelines over the next five years. The annual budgets divide these plans into annual plans. In the NDPG for FY 2019-, the government argued for the need to strengthen protection of the cyber domain, underwater ISR, and control over Japan’s vast maritime space and airspace, which extend to many remote islands. [2] The MTDP for FY 2019-FY2023 provided more concrete plans for developing a new policy to protect the cyber domain, keeping a fleet of 22 submarines, acquiring 45 new F-35s, including 18 built with STOVL capacity to allow them to land on short runways and modifying a helicopter carrier to allow F-35s with STOVL capacity to land on it. [3] The annual budget for FY 2019 states that Japan was establishing a cyber security unit, maintaining submarines, acquiring 6 F-35s and beginning the work to modify its Izumo helicopter carrier to allow aircraft to land on it. [4] No procurement that is at odds with the strategy and guidelines that Japan builds on was identified. However, the contents of the MTDP may need further specification before requests for proposals for a certain piece of equipment can be sent to businesses. For example, the MTDP for FY2014-FY2019 gave reasons for procuring 9 ship based multipurpose helicopters. A group with members from the internal bureaus of the Ministry and the Maritime Self-Defense Force (MSDF) staff, emphasising cost, made selection criteria that would have led to the selection of a small helicopter. MSDF Chief of Staff Admiral Takai, arguing that the MSDF needed a large helicopter in order to perform its duties, had the MSDF staff write new selection criteria in cooperation with the Ministry. The Admiral was reprimanded for this, in particular because he had mentioned that a helicopter produced by a specific business would be a good candidate for a large helicopter. [5] The reaction to the Admiral’s intervention is evidence that there is a logical flow down from strategy to individual procurement.

The Diet conducts some scrutiny of defence procurement when it audits the annual accounts. Each House of the Diet audits the settlement of accounts independently (see Q28A). The audit by the House of Councillors is generally more extensive and timely than that by the House of Representatives. The House of Councillors approved the audit by the Board of Audit of the accounts for fiscal year 2017 on June 14, 2019. Regarding defence procurement, it advised the Acquisition, Technology & Logistics Agency (ATLA) to improve the maintenance of its database of procurement costs. [1] In the House of Representatives, the Committee on Audit and Oversight of Administration discussed the audit of defence accounts once between December 6, 2018 and December 9, 2019, [2] and the Security Committee discussed it once between November 8, 2018 and December 9, 2019. [3] In each case, a representative asked the Executive about arms procurement from the US through Foreign Military Sales (FMS). Inspections by IGO and audits by the Board of Audit do not assess whether “procurement is in line with national security strategy”. Such an assessment might be conducted by the Ministry of Finance, when it considers the budget request from the Ministry of Defence, and by the Diet. [4] In line with its mandate, the Inspector General’s Office (IGO) examines defence procurement in its annual inspections, but the focus is mostly on preventing collusion and ensuring that information is shared fairly with bidders. [5] IGO did, however, follow up a whistleblower report by conducting a special investigation of the intervention by the MSDF Chief of Staff in the selection of a new helicopter in 2015 (see Q63A). According to a newspaper report, IGO did not object to the fact that the MSDF Chief of Staff disagreed with the criteria that had been determined for the selection of a new helicopter, but it did object to the fact that he recommended a helicopter from a specific producer. [6] In its regular audit of the accounts, the Board of Audit examines factors that can make government administration more effective. In the audit for fiscal year 2017, it recommended that ATLA continue the work to develop a database with correct prices for production cost to use in calculating prices of defence procurements. [7] Furthermore, the Board of Audit published a special audit report in 2019, requested by the Diet, on defence procurement through FMS. [8]

In the NDPG for FY 2019 –, the types of defence assets that Japan should procure are described, and an annex table on the last page shows the target force size in numbers of personnel and of the main types of military units. [1] The types of assets to procure are described in greater detail in the main text of the MTDP for FY 2019 – FY 2023, which has an annex table that shows the quantity that should be procured of each type of weapon in order to reach the NDPG’s force size target. [2] The quantity is divided into procurement through each annual budget (see Q63A). [3] The Ministry specifies technical requirements for the equipment described in the MTDP and invites businesses to submit bids. The specifications determine the performance level of the equipment, and therefore its price. [4] The Ministry then makes a proposal to the Ministry of Finance for an annual budget. Building on the principles set forth in the NDPG for FY 2019–, the MTDP for FY 2019 – FY 2023 describes how Japan should acquire capabilities in multiple domains, [2] and an amount of money was therefore set aside in the budget for FY 2019 for acquiring a deep space observation radar. [3] However, most procurement aimed to achieve a second goal described in the MTDP: to strengthen traditional military capabilities. [2] An itemised budget document lists procurement under subordinate goals in the MTDP that will contribute to strengthening traditional military capabilities. A third goal was to strengthen missile defence capability, and the budget therefore included funds to begin the construction of 2 Aegis Ashore batteries and to upgrade PATRIOT PAC-3 MSE surface-to-air guided missiles. [5] It is, however, worth noting that on June 15, 2020, Minister of Defence Taro Kono said that Japan would suspend deployment of the Aegis Ashore defence system, citing costs and technical problems. [6] This announcement was made after Japan had made large down payments on the system, and spent time developing it that could have been spent implementing alternative measures. [7] The list of procurements in the budget for FY 2019– includes both new weapons and modernised old weapons. [3] With the exception of a few artillery items, all of the “new” weapons are also listed in the appendix to the MTDP. [2] However, Members of Parliament have debated the appropriateness of a different document, which is a statement that was approved by the Cabinet on the same day in 2018 as the NDPG and MTDP. [8] According to this statement, Japan will increase the total number of F-35As that it will procure from 42, as approved by the Cabinet in 2011, to 147. Procurement as of FY 2019 will take place by purchasing completed planes from the US. If a more cost-effective way of procuring the fighters is found, it will be selected. In 2011, Japan decided to buy F-35As to replace ageing F-4s. [9] The MTDP for FY2019 – FY2023 says that the, “SDF will proceed replacing fighters that are not suitable for modernisation (F-15) by increasing the number of fighter (F-35A).” [2] The Prime Minister has said that this decision was taken on Japan’s own initiative, with the aim to replace F-15s which are wearing out. [10] With the priority given to air superiority in the NDPG and MTDP, [2] and given the fact that Japan has deployed around 200 F-15s, many of which are about 30 years old, [11] the procurement target for F-35As that was set in 2018 seems reasonable. However, buying the airplanes “off the shelf” from the US with no Japanese contribution to the production runs counter to a goal, stressed in the NDPG for FY 2019– of having some Japanese contribution to the production of fighter aircraft to strengthen Japan’s own military industrial base. [1] Many of the same types of weapons as had been procured in FY 2014 and FY 2015 were procured in FY 2016 – FY 2018. [12] [13] [14] By the end of FY 2018, the Ministry of Defence had not met the target procurement of any weapons listed in the MTDP appendix. No explanation was found in the cited budget documents or in the mainstream national newspapers Asahi Shimbun [15] or Yomiuri Shimbun [16] for why the procurement target was not achieved six types of weapons. It is conspicuous that the MSDF procured none of the target nine multipurpose helicopters (see Q63A). A journalist specialising in Japanese military affairs has provided evidence that the process to select a helicopter reached a stalemate because the disagreement between the MSDF staff, which argued that a large helicopter of the MCH-101 type was needed in order to perform the missions of the service, and the internal bureaus of the Ministry of Defence, which opted for a smaller and less costly helicopter, was not resolved. No clear evidence of opportunistic or unplanned purchases in the budgets for the fiscal years covered by the MTDP for FY 2014 – FY 2018 or in FY 2019 were uncovered. However, as new information about the cost and technical feasibility of the Aegis Ashore system was said to be the reason that its deployment was suspended in 2020, the purchase of this weapons system may not have been optimally planned. And the aim of strengthening Japan’s military industrial base that is formulated in the NDPG for FY 2019– was not furthered by the decision in 2018 to buy completed F-35s. There are several possible explanations for the decisions to buy these weapons systems, including that they were attempts to mollify the US Government under President Trump. [17] It is fair to conclude that these decisions indicate that not all purchases were based on clearly identified and quantified requirements.  

In 2018, the U.S. claimed that it provided support to the Jordanian military through developing a five-year procurement plan for the Jordanian Armed Forces [1]. Whereas this might indicate that defence procurement has now been strategically planned for the coming five years, there is no evidence that this plan exists. It is also important to note that one can safely assume that Jordan’s armed forces did not have a strategy prior to U.S. assistance. In addition to that, observers have commented that in general, Jordan does not have a clear public procurement strategy [2,3,4,5]. There is no evidence to support that Jordan has ever had a procurement strategy, prior to U.S. assistance, and even if this strategy currently exists, it may be secret so it is impossible to verify how procurement requirements are derived.

There is no scrutiny of actual defence purchases, and there is little room for defence scrutiny in Jordan in general. For example, the Parliament does not receive audited reports of the annual accounts of the security and defence sectors [1, 2, 3]. The armed forces do not appear on the list of audited entities by the Audit Bureau [1]. There are no oversight mechanisms over defence expenditure in general. In the 2017 annual financial accounts of the Ministry of Finance, there is no mention of defence or military expenditures [4]. Other sources have confirmed this [5,6,7].

As has been established above, Jordan does not seem to have a national security and defence strategy, or if it does, the strategy is kept secret [1,2,3].

In principal the defence strategy is supposed to outline activities that enable defence to achieve its vision, mission and objectives. These in turn inform the areas in which defence needs to invest resources in order to fulfil these capabilities. Kenya’s defence strategy, or the Defence White paper that is available to the public, only goes as far as outlining the threats. In some areas the Defence White Paper does note that it will develop appropriate capabilities and institute measures to safeguard against these threats.[1] However, these are vague statements that do not necessarily give sufficient information which procurement activities can be identified. MOD does however outline its defence policies and strategies in the programme budget that is submitted to National Treasury. [2]

The policies and strategies in-turn inform programme objectives, which then inform the expenditure areas. For example in the 2020/21-2023/23 financial year, MOD outlined four programme/objectives in the defence budget. These areas were: defence to protect sovereignty and territorial integrity of Kenya, civil aid to support humanitarian activities, general administration, planning and support services and National Space Management. Key outputs and Key Performance Indicators are then derived from these objectives which in turn then develop target activities. Although procurement requirements are then derived from these activities, there is no logical flow and there is a lack of clarity on how those requirements assist in meeting the objectives.

Parliament has the mandate through the departmental committee, in this case, Defence and Foreign Relations Committee, as well as the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) to scrutinise the procurement activities of the Ministry of Defence. [1] However, this scrutiny often comes too late, after a lot of corrupt purchases have been made by the ministry. [2] This is perhaps because parliament only learns about these processes after the Auditor-General tables audit reports of ministries including MOD in parliament.

The media too also appears to know about these activities from audit reports or the at times leaked documents that revealed such corrupt dealings, with most of them being attributed to influential politicians and military officials. Besides, it is not entirely clear whether parliament gets access to all information on procurement and how the MOD spends its money.

Furthermore, laws such as the Public Audit Act No. 34 of 2015, section 40 allow the audit reports of security organs such MOD to redact information and ensure confidentiality of information, thus shielding them from comprehensive scrutiny by parliament. [3] It is important to note that this provision has been declared unconstitutional by a petition filed by civil society organisations in Kenya, among them Transparency International Kenya. In Petition No. 388 of 2016, it was noted that section 40 among other sections in the Public Audit do cripple the Auditor General’s powers and ability to discharge his mandate. [4]

The Ministry of Defence (MOD) is expected to prepare an annual procurement plan as stipulated in section 53 (2) of the Public Procurement and Asset Disposal Act. Section 69(3) of the Act provides for emergency purchases, for which sufficient evidence should be provided. [1] However, it is difficult to establish whether the Ministry of Defence makes opportunistic and unplanned purchases because of the highly secretive operations of the military as often reported in the media. [2] Furthermore, although the budget outlines the activities under which various purchases are made, it is not clear whether these objectives and activities are part of the defence strategy. Given the lack of available information on defence purchases, it is not possible to score this indicator and it is marked ‘Not Enough Information’.

Kosovo has not yet established a comprehensive National Defence Strategy. The Kosovo Security Council (KSC) [1] and the Kosovo Government approved its draft in June 2019 [2]. Following its adoption by the executive, the National Security Strategy was submitted to the Kosovo Assembly for review and final approval [2]. Based on current legislation, the National Security Strategy needs to be approved by the Assembly [3] after being approved by the KSC and the Government in order to come into effect. But the Assembly has not yet approved the Strategy. The draft National Security Strategy superficially references procurement. It states that the country will strengthen alternative dispute resolution mechanisms in public procurement contracts by advancing the legal framework on public procurement [4]. However, there is no reference to procurement requirements for defence-related issues. Therefore, it seems that procurement requirements do not derive from the National Defence Strategy or the National Security Strategy.
In principle, procurement requirements in the defence sector are outlined in Article 3 of the Law No. 05/L-068 on Amending and Supplementing the Law No. 04/L-042 on Public Procurement of the Republic of Kosovo, amended and supplemented with the Law No. 04/L-237 [5]; and in Article 4 of the Regulation (GRK) No. 03/2019 on Procurement for Defence and Security Purposes [6].

The oversight mechanisms that scrutinizes the defence procurements in Kosovo are the Assembly’s Committee on Internal Affairs, Security and Oversight of the Kosovo Security Force (CIASOKSF) [1], the Committee on Budget and Finance (CBF) [1], the National Audit Office (NAO) [2], and the Internal Audit Unit (IAU) of the Ministry of Defence [3]. However, these overseeing institutions do not regularly scrutinise all procurement activities or purchases within the defence sector. For instance, the NAO carries out sample tests of procurement activities within the Ministry of Defence, but not all of the contracts are tested [4]. The IAU does not publicly publish its reports, and it is therefore difficult to assess the content of their reports relating to procurement activities or purchases made by the Ministry of Defence. There is no evidence that the Assembly’s committees have conducted any monitoring process on procurement activities.
The institutions which oversee procurement activities in Kosovo are the Public Procurement Regulatory Commission (PPRC) [5] and the Procurement Review Body [6].

Defence purchases are based on the Ministry of Defence’s Comprehensive Transition Plan in place for their Kosovo Security Forces, which was approved in January 2019 [1]. Purchases are not based on the Law on Public Procurement and the Regulation on Procurement for Defence and Security Purposes. The Comprehensive Transition Plan covers the period from 2019-2027 and is a guiding strategic document for the development of defence capabilities in Kosovo [1]. The main aim of this document is to encourage sustainability and continuous improvement of the Security Forces operational capabilities [1]. The development of the Security Forces will be conducted through three phases, based on this plan [1]. With regards to efficiency of expenses, the plan states that developments will be based on cost analysis, considering benefits, operational and maintenance expenses, improvement and update potential for new purchases. The plan also outlines the following purchase plans for the Security Forces for the period 2019-2027: Equipment Purchasing Plan, Vehicle Purchasing Plan, Armament Purchasing Plan, Ammunition War Reserve Purchasing Plan, Radio-Communication Purchasing Plan, and IT Equipment Purchasing Plan [1]. Given the document is not yet published, the content and details of these purchase plans are not indicated in the short summary document published by the Ministry of Defence. The full document is not publicly available, but the Ministry of Defence does publish a short summary on its website [1].

Auditors say that internally the security agencies do attempt to tie their procurement decisions to their defence strategy (which is not available to the public), but they do loosely (1, 2 and 3). The defence strategy has almost no details and the purchases are often not justified or they simply say that they are important for their long term goals, without elaboration.

Auditors have the right to scrutinise these processes but they are often not given the full facts, auditors said (1, 2 and 3).

The SAB cannot legally force these ministries to cooperate and Parliament is not only full of Government supporters but it can also be dissolved for no reason by the Emir, making it impossible for anyone to pressure these ministries into following the law, according to the constitution (4). But there is naturally a politcal, social and economic price to dissolving Parliament. Like most gulf monarchies, the Kuwaiti royal family’s main priority is stability, so they try to avoid resorting to this move, a member of the royal family said. The absence of examples in the media is not the product of censorship alone as Kuwait’s military activities are small and have no real impact on regional politics, and so they are not of much interest to journalists in Kuwait and the region as a whole.

All purchases are tried to the country’s defence strategy but it is extremely vague, auditors said (1, 2 and 3). The absence of examples in the media is not the product of censorship alone, as Kuwait’s military activities are small and have no real impact on regional politics, and so they are not of much interest to journalists in Kuwait and the region as a whole.

Most of the procurement requirements are clearly derived from the State Defence Concept [1] and no major procurements non-consistent with the needs defined in this and related documents can be identified; also, publicly released information on the Development Plan of the National Armed Forces 2016-2028 [2] seems to approve this. At the same time, the lack of publicly available documents beyond the strategic level does not allow open verification of this.

Scrutiny is occasionally conducted by the Parliament and the State Audit Office [1] [2] to verify if procurements are made in line with the strategic priorities.

The Ministry of Defence and Armed Forces systematically bases all purchases on clearly identified and quantified requirements revealed in the National defence concept and National defence development plan 2016-2028. [1] [2]

At the time of the research, Lebanon did not have a national defence strategy (1). Nevertheless, the CDPs (2013-2017 and 2018-2022) are lower-level formal documents that have a significant and similar impact on procurement decisions (2). The LAF has created the Capabilities Development Plan (CDP), the closest document to a white paper, as an offset to the absence of a national defence strategy and one step closer towards it (3). The documents have laid out LAF’s capabilities and need to professionalize their force and presented to donor countries (4). There are mission-specific examples reflecting the impact of the CDP such as A-29 SuperTucanos for light attack, CAS and ISR (2).

The GDA regularly scrutinizes and oversees procurement requirements and decisions (1). The audit bodies, as mentioned from before, have praised the level of transparency and accuracy the LAF adopts (2). A source confirmed the strict implementation of procurement requirements and decisions (3).

The LAF systematically base all purchases on clearly identified and quantified requirements under the CDP, as mentioned in 63A (1). Most of the LAF’s military equipment has been acquired through donations and military assistance programs by foreign countries (1). More than 80% of the LAF’s equipment comes from the US (2). Although it has legacy equipment including Russian weapons, the LAF is in process of phasing out small arms warsaw pact legacy (1), Lebanon reallocated the military donation from Russia that was originally was supposed to go the LAF, to the ISF (3).

The National Defence and Security Strategy is published publicly and is accessible to all individuals. In this Strategy the following provisions are stated: main defence and security interests, risks and dangers of these interests, priorities of national security system development, defence politics, short term and long term tasks and other provisions relating to the national defence and security strategy [1]. All procurements come from overall strategic goals enshrined in strategic documents. According to wider strategy regulation, it may be considered that procurement requirements are derived from this Strategy. However, the National Defence and Security Strategy is too general of a document to provide substantial evidence that recent purchases derive from strategic documents.

Each year the National Audit Office of Lithuania conducts an official auditing of public procurement within the national security system and provides suggestions and proposals for how to improve the national security procurement system [1]. For instance, in the report published at the end of 2017, the National Audit Office pointed out that despite the reorganisation of the procurement system which has contributed to a more effective system, there are still some observed risks which the Ministry of Defence has to control. For example, one of the risks is that some procurements are organised by specialists, for whom procurement organisation and execution is not their main activity, which means that they might lack the necessary competence for such procurement processes. However, a new Defence Resource Agency was established in January 2018 which is hiring procurement experts to work on centralised defence procurement [2]. Also, the Audit Office recommended to constantly analyse risk factors related to corrupt activities occurring in the procurement cycle [3]. What is more, the National Security and Defence Committee, which actively takes part in the review of the national defence and security strategy (procurement requirements are derived from this strategy), updates and improvement processes, also discusses and considers institutions responsible for national security and defence; and reports and evaluates whether assignments for these institutions are sufficient [4].

There is no publicly known information or data which can verify that each purchase and acquisition is based on clearly identified and quantified requirements derived from the national defence and security strategy. However, interviewees note that from 2018 onwards, purchases are based on clearly identified needs, and discussed among army representatives and civil officials. Before 2018, according to interviewee 7, purchases were opportunistic and not properly planned [1,2,3].

According to the government reviewer, the Defence Materials Agency publishes information about potential purchases for the next 10 years [4]. The national defence purchases also derive from the strategic plan of the Ministry of Defence [5].

In general, procurements are based on the national defence and security strategies. Procurement is done with multiple objectives in mind. Firstly, there are national security and operational considerations which influence purchasing decisions. Secondly, procurement decisions can consider domestic industry needs. Thirdly, the executive may be prejudiced towards certain types of hardware or certain suppliers of hardware – perhaps because they themselves have little understanding of strategy, because they are influenced by advisors, or because they wish to benefit certain proxies/cronies. Fourthly, procurement can be done on the basis of how the executive would like to project Malaysia regionally or internationally. It can be hard power for hard powers sake, rather than to meet a security objective. Fifthly, procurement can be done in order to further specific bilateral ties. Finally, procurement can be a function of terms of payment. For instance, Malaysia may procure hardware from a particular country in return for them purchasing higher quantities of palm oil. [1] [2] According to Deputy Defence Minister, there are also practices whereby weapons system acquisition programmes are not purely based on a needs basis of the Armed Forces’ three branches. Under the previous government, the procurements were “vendor-driven, often against the end-user’s advice, and sometimes against our strategic interests.” [3] The recently published Defence White Paper (DWP) outlines a national defence strategy and gives some details of future requirements, [4] however it remains to be seen whether this is followed in practice.

Purchases are subject to the Ministerial Internal Auditing, the Ministry of Finance, and the Auditor General’s Office (AG)’s yearly auditing inspection. [1] Under the previous administration, there was a lack of scrutiny of the specific needs and requirements of the armed forces. According to Lt Col Ahmad Ghazali Abu Hassan, a Senior Fellow at the National Defence University, Malaysia’s defence and security strategy has never been “guided by a specific blueprint”, hence, its defence planning was mainly based on immediate and short-term needs, reactive in nature and ad hoc in implementation. Furthermore, he emphasises that “future procurement and development programmes must also be planned to break away from past practices that have resulted in our armed forces being equipped with motley sets of weapons and equipment which at times lack working compatibility, create logistical problems and are strategically inefficient.” [2]

The purchases may be clearly identified and quantified based on strategic requirements, as outlined in the Defence White Paper. [1] But in some cases, they may be subject to national and political decisions to purchase defence assets, which are not based on defence specifications. [2, 3]

The MDAC’s major recent purchases have largely been in accordance with the strategic needs outlined in the LOPM. However, the LOPM is not a comprehensive national defence and security strategy, and it does not go into specific detail, leaving a significant amount of leeway for the Minister of Defence to approve purchases that do not represent value for money. Beyond the re-publication of the LOPM in its full form on a Malian news website (it is not available on either the government’s website, the FAMa website, nor in the Journal Officiel database), no further breakdown is provided, and therefore it is impossible to verify how procurement requirements are derived.

There is clear evidence that audits of defence purchases do occur, but only on a sporadic basis. In April 2018, opposition party Parena claimed to have gained access to an unpublished BVG report, which identifies numerous cases of overspending and dubious activity in military procurement.⁶ The report apparently shows that the government bought one of the Super Pumas helicopters from Ireland, paying the 3.5 billion CFA price in cash. The audit also reportedly shows that the second Super Puma, bought directly from Airbus, cost 3.9 billion CFA, although the terms and conditions of the contract are opaque, according to the auditors.⁶ These claims were also reported by a journalist, who had also seen the unpublished audit, in Le Républican newspaper.¹⁵ Although this audit remains unpublished, it does indicate that there are at least some occasional audits of defence procurements.
When the IMF, the World Bank and the EU suspended their aid programmes to Mali following reports of the off-budget purchase of a new presidential jet in 2014, it was the BVG that audited the account (see Q16C). The BVG determined that the former Minister of Defence, Soumeylou Boubeye Maïga, and the Minister of the Economy incorrectly interpreted a legal clause that allows for certain acquisitions to be off-budget (see Q29A).⁹
The audit found that the government had spent 87.77 billion CFA (USD 163.44 million) on defence items that were not declared in the official budget.⁹ The report found that 18.59 billion CFA went towards the presidential jet, while a further 69.18 billion CFA was spent on other military equipment, primarily transport vehicles.⁹ The BVG found that the MDAC had failed to respect the 2014 Finance Law requiring it to register these contracts and submit them as part of the annual budget. Moreover, many of the contracts were found to be heavily overpriced, strongly suggesting that these acquisitions involved substantial illicit activity.¹⁰
– Lorries that can transport up to 5 tonnes of goods that normally cost 28.5 million CFA were priced at 78 million CFA in the contract.
– Lorries that can transport up to 10 tonnes that normally cost 34 million CFA were priced at 115 million CFA.
– Petrol-tankers that can carry up to 6 cubic metres of fuel, normally costing 29 million CFA were billed at 120 million CFA.
– And petrol-tankers that can carry up to 18 cubic metres of fuel, normally worth 38.5 million CFA were billed at 210 million CFA.¹⁰
As of April 2018, it has yet to be determined what happened to the money overspent on these contracts, which would have amounted to 393 million CFA had the government not subsequently cancelled them. But the Defence Minister responsible for signing these contracts has since returned to government as Prime Minister.
However, audits of defence purchases are far from a regular feature of public life. In 2016, Mali’s authority for regulating public sector contracts and spending (ARMDS) found that it was wholly unable to audit the Ministry of Defence’s finances for 2014 because of the lack of documents provided by the ministry.¹¹
Moreover, the BVG’s last published report came in 2015 (according to its website) and made no mention of defence spending or incomes.¹² The failure to publish any subsequent reports or to address the defence budget by the body supposed to monitor accountants and administrators highlights the frequent lack of transparency relating to defence activities. As the World Bank pointed out in 2017, the BVG has not specifically reviewed Ministry of Defence accounts, and only an aggregate administrative account is transmitted to the auditor when the annual budget is examined.¹³ ¹⁴ Also, Inspector general and audit mechanisms have proven to be short in terms of resources and staff, which undermines their ability to exercise scrutiny when audits actually happen.

The LOPM outlines the major purchases that need to be made but requirements are not clearly identified. The LOPM does not go into specific detail, leaving a significant amount of leeway for the Minister of Defence to approve purchases that do not represent value for money. Purchases often appear to be opportunistic in nature.
The LOPM outlines that between 2015 and 2019, the MDAC will have a budget of:
– 200 billion CFA to purchase aircraft and technical support equipment for the armed forces
– 100 billion CFA to buy combat vehicles and modern transport vehicles
– 70 billion CFA for equipment specifically for the security forces, notably for the national guard and the national gendarmerie.
– 20 billion CFA for intelligence and communications equipment.⁸
Beyond the re-publication of the LOPM in its full form on a Malian news website (it is not available on either the government’s website, the FAMa website, nor in the Journal Officiel database), no further breakdown is provided.
In February 2016, Airbus announced it had received an order for a C295W aeroplane from the Malian government, the first public record of this contract.¹ The aircraft was delivered In December 2016.²
Similarly, MDAC’s purchase of Russian attack helicopters in September 2016 was not revealed by the government, but was reported in November 2016 thanks to a source within the Russian company Rosoboronexport.⁴ The company delivered two attack helicopters to Bamako in October 2017, again reflecting the FAMa’s clear need to rebuild and re-equip in the wake of its collapse in 2012.
Another major defence purchase was reported in June 2015. Brazilian company Embraer Defense & Security announced that Mali had ordered six A-29 Super Tocano combat planes.⁶ An unpublished report by the BVG notes that the Malian government agreed to pay USD 88.7 million (51.7 billion CFA) for the six planes.⁶ The BVG shows that the Malian state had paid two of the three instalments of the contract by 2016 (the third was scheduled for 2017), but Embraer is now set to deliver only four of the six planes.⁶
When the IMF, the World Bank and the EU suspended their aid programmes to Mali following reports of the off-budget purchase of a new presidential jet in 2014, it was the BVG that audited the account (see Q16C). The BVG determined that the former Minister of Defence, Soumeylou Boubeye Maïga, and the Minister of the Economy incorrectly interpreted a legal clause that allows for certain acquisitions to be off-budget (see Q29A).⁹
The audit found that the government had spent 87.77 billion CFA (USD 163.44 million) on defence items that were not declared in the official budget.⁹ The report found that 18.59 billion CFA went towards the presidential jet, while a further 69.18 billion CFA was spent on other military equipment, primarily transport vehicles.⁹ The BVG found that the MDAC had failed to respect the 2014 Finance Law requiring it to register these contracts and submit them as part of the annual budget. Moreover, many of the contracts were found to be heavily overpriced, strongly suggesting that these acquisitions involved substantial illicit activity.¹⁰
– Lorries that can transport up to 5 tonnes of goods that normally cost 28.5 million CFA were priced at 78 million CFA in the contract.
– Lorries that can transport up to 10 tonnes that normally cost 34 million CFA were priced at 115 million CFA.
– Petrol-tankers that can carry up to 6 cubic metres of fuel, normally costing 29 million CFA were billed at 120 million CFA.
– And petrol-tankers that can carry up to 18 cubic metres of fuel, normally worth 38.5 million CFA were billed at 210 million CFA.¹⁰
As of April 2018, it has yet to be determined what happened to the money overspent on these contracts, which would have amounted to 393 million CFA had the government not subsequently cancelled them. But the Defence Minister responsible for signing these contracts has since returned to government as Prime Minister.

In accordance with the law, the planning of acquisitions must be in accordance with the objectives and priorities of the National Development Plan and of the sectoral programs, as well as the forecasts contained in its annual programmes. [1] Likewise, the planning, programming, budgeting, and spending of acquisitions, leases, and services shall be subject to the specific provisions of the Federation’s Expenditure Budget. [2]

However, there are acquisitions that are not always aligned with the national strategy. On many occasions, the authorities justify these purchases as necessary for national security, which is why experts describe them as an abuse of power. [3] [4] [5] [6] [7] [8]

The ASF has the power to inspect operations that involve federal public resources, [1] such as purchases or contracting of companies, including those of SEDENA and SEMAR, although it does not do so for each purchase. Likewise, it can carry out audits to verify works, acquired goods, and contracted services to verify if the resources were used in the terms of the applicable provisions and in accordance with the national strategy. [2] [3] [4] [5]

These entities base their acquisitions and contracts on clear requirements, as shown through their activity reports. [1] [2] However, there are journalistic investigations that show opportunistic purchases of goods and services without justification. Such is the case of the purchase of luxury aircraft or armored cars that the government justifies as necessary for security and defence, but that in any case are expendable. [3] [4] [5] [6] [7] [8] [9]

Procurement requirements are formally derived from the national defence strategy. [1] However, current and previous defence and security strategies are very vague and certainly insufficient to be of any use in defining procurement requirements, [2][3][4] while plans for confidential procurements are classified. [5]

On the other hand, a Strategic Review of defence adopted by the Government [6] has somewhat more information about future procurements. There are no reports on the implementation of the previous Strategic Review, [7] but at least some conducted procurements were in line with the priorities of that document (e.g. helicopters procured through government-to-government contracts).

However, there are no clear links between the National strategy, adopted by the Parliament, and the Strategic Review, adopted by the government.

According to the MoD reviewer, defence and security procurements are solely based on clearly identified and specified needs of the Ministry of Defence and the Armed Forces of Montenegro. National Security Strategy and Defence Strategy of Montenegro provide clear strategic guidances for the development of security and defence sector. Procurement, equipment and modernization plans have been set out in the Strategic Defence Review and the Long-term Development Plan 2019-2028 on the basis of guidances set out in the above-mentioned strategies, and reflected in the annual budget and Procurement Plan.

The Parliament does not scrutinize whether procurement is in line with the national security strategy or if there was any need for a particular purchases. [1] The State Audit Institution very rarely audits the Ministry of defence [2] and assesses only compliance with financial standards, but not the need for procurements or compliance with strategic documents. [3]

According to the MoD reviewer, defence and security procurement oversight is carried out at multiple levels at all stages of the procurement cycle. Expert staff in the Directorate for Material Resources of the Ministry of Defence collects and controls stated procurement needs, technical specifications from Army units, aligns them with defence priorities and goals, legislation in the areas of business, and ultimately performs public procurement contracts with control of compliance with the Law on public procurement. Also, the Internal Audit Department and the Inspection Department carry out internal control of the legality of business in this area. [4][5]

The Ministry of Defence claims that it bases all its purchases on clearly identified and quantified requirements specified in annual plans that are submitted to NATO and the government. [1] However, these plans are classified [2] and cannot be assessed. Current and previous defence and security strategies are very vague and certainly insufficient to be of any use for defining procurement requirements. [3][4][5]

On the other hand, current and previous Strategic Reviews of defence adopted by the Government [6][7] have somewhat more information about future procurements. Some large procurements were in line with priorities of those documents (e.g. helicopters procured through government-to-government contracts).

Procurement requirements are in theory formally derived from a national defence and security strategy. The strategy is likely to be weak, vague or insufficient to derive procurement requirements. This national defence and security strategy has been consistent since the beginning of the 1970s (1)(2). Its objectives are:
⁃ To implement and maintain territorial continuity and integrity, particularly concerning the region of Western Sahara which is considered to be part of Morocco since 1974. This claim is not recognized by the international community. There is also a ongoing border dispute with neighbouring Algeria. Both claims have resulted in military operations against the Polisario, or the Algerian military.
⁃ To prevent clandestine traffic (fuel, migrant, weapons) through the borders with Algeria and Mauritania.
⁃ To counter potential jihadist threats coming from Mali and Niger.

The King’s absolute power concerning military affairs following the 1971 and 1972 coup attempts might explain this lack of transparency, which in turn could imply corruption risks. It is therefore impossible to assess whether procurement requirements derive from a national defence and security strategy, even if a national strategy exists. There is no formal procedure in place for defining purchase requirements. The defence strategy may be secret so it is impossible to verify how procurement requirements are derived.¹ ²

NGO sources failed to provide information about scrutiny over defense purchases (1)(2)(3). Official sources failed to provide information about scrutiny of actual purchases (4)(5). Interviews could not confirm the existence of scrutiny mechanisms over actual purchases (6)(7).

As the answer to indicator Q63A explains, there is a vaguely defined national strategy. However, as answers to indicators 62 and 63B explain, there is no clear and detailed list of actual spendings, which makes it impossible to confirm whether all procurement requirements are derived from a national defence and security strategy, if defence purchases are based on clearly identified and quantified requirements, and if procurement decisions are well audited. There is no white paper concerning purchases or military strategy, and no mention of the purchases on the website of the Ministry of Finance or the National Audit Office (in the absence of a website dedicated to the ministry of defence) (1)(2)(3).

Moreover, the local and foreign press have not reported any major arms purchases over the past two years. Yet, no evidence has been found supporting the fact that purchases are often outside of the national strategy and appear to be opportunistic in nature.

The Defence White Paper (2015) addresses the National Defence Policy and the Defence Strategy, which is based on the People’s War Strategy, but does not include procedures for defence procurement [1].

Myanmar does not have a procurement law [1]. Neither MPs from Parliament nor the Auditor General have the power to scrutinise the military’s defence spending [2]. Myanmar’s military has its own audit mechanism, however the Ministry of Defence provides explanations of its expenditures to Parliament often [3]. The results or consequences following from these explanations are not clear.

The Defence White Paper (2015) addresses the National Defence Policy and the Defence Strategy, which is based on the People’s War Strategy, but does not include procedures for defence procurement [1]. It is also not available online to the public. Myanmar’s military rarely announces its plans or military purchases. Given the lack of information about national security strategy and military procurement, there is not enough information to score this indicator and it is marked ‘Not Enough Information’.

A two-way corroboration can be seen between the defence strategy documents and the procurement reporting documents, in that the defence strategy documents outline the materiel needed to realise goals and the procurement reporting documents outline how purchases link to strategy [1,2,3]. For each purchase included in the Defence Project Overview, there is a dedicated section (‘Strategic Policy Framework’) which details the relevance of the purchase for overarching strategic goals [3]. Additionally, the first stage of the Defence Materiel Process is an analysis of requirements. This stage culminates with a letter from the Minister of Defence or the State Secretary to Parliament detailing why the materiel in question is needed [4].

However, in some cases, policy documents outlining future strategy and subsequent procurement needs remain vague and the procurement strategy is muddied during changes of cabinet [5]. Sometimes, in order for the strategy to remain relevant for future Ministers of Defence, procurement strategy is presented in generic, widely applicable terms [6,7].

There are three oversight mechanisms for the defence procurement cycle that monitor how purchases align with the overall national security strategy. The first is the formal political cycle, as parliamentary approval is required for acquisitions over 25 million euros and, additionally, Parliament must approve the annual defence budget, which includes all procurement projects [1]. Parliament is therefore informed about the progress of procurement via letters from the MoD, the annual Defence Projects Overview, the annual budget and the annual report [2,3,4,5]. The Standing Committee on Defence is active in its scrutiny of defence purchases [2,6,7,8,9]. The second oversight mechanism is the audit conducted by the Central Government Audit Service [10]. Third, the Court of Audit is tasked with the overall audit of all government departments and scrutinises any project under the Defence Materiel Process [11,12,13].

Strategy is systemically used to justify purchases. In addition to the strategy detailed for each purchase in the Defence Projects Overview (see Q63A), online tenders to suppliers cite known strategies of the MoD, such as concept development and experimentation (CD&E) for unmanned systems [1].

Major Defence purchases are guided by Defence White Papers which provide long-term Government expectations of the Defence [1]. This is followed by Strategic Defence Policy Statements which inform Defence Capability Plans and are articulated within MoD Statements of Intent [2, 3, 4]. This pattern ensures that procurement, and therefore capabilities, are matched to strategic intent and policies set by the Government and prevents the acquisition of unnecessary systems, personnel, or other items.

The OAG conducts annual audits of the MoD and NZDF that appear in the respective Annual Reports [1, 2]. It also briefs the FADTC twice a year, once each for the estimates and annual reviews [3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11]. The FADTC interviews Chief Executives and the Chief of Defence Force and submits questionnaires to the MoD and NZDF on all matters, including procurement. It is evident that both the MoD and NZDF must provide explanations for procurements and how these contribute to national security objectives or the attaining thereof [12, 13, 14, 15, 16]. The “Defence Major Acquisition Projects 2017” is a good example, wherein the MoD provided the FADTC with key lessons on continuous improvement in performances and initiatives to include the Change Action Programme within the Capability Delivery Team, the C-130 Life Extension Programme, NH-90 Medium Utility Helicopters, Pilot Training Capability, Anzac Frigate Systems Upgrade, Anzac Frigate Platform Systems Upgrade, Maritime Helicopter Capability, Individual Weapon Replacement, Strategic Bearer Network, Defence Command and Control System, Project Protector Remediation, and Network Enabled Army – Tranche One [17].

Major Defence purchases are guided by Defence White Papers which provide long-term Government expectations of the Defence [1]. This is followed by Strategic Defence Policy Statements which inform Defence Capability Plans and are articulated within MoD Statements of Intent [2, 3, 4]. This pattern ensures that procurement, and therefore capabilities, are matched to strategic intent and policies set by the Government and prevents the acquisition of unnecessary systems, personnel, or other items. The MoD is the lead agency for major defence procurements, though projects are closely coordinated with the NZDF so as to ensure that those purchasing (MoD) and those who will be operating the acquired systems (NZDF) achieve synergy in life-cycle expectations [5]. Recent purchases/upgrades, such as the P-8A Poseidon, ANZAC Frigate Life Extension, Network Enabled Army – ISR, and Protected Mobility programmes are all in-line with the White Paper policy statements/goals.

Niger’s procurement needs are primarily based on strategic security concerns and their efforts to contain the armed groups that have sprung up along its borders with Mali, Algeria, Libya and Nigeria. Niger is impacted directly by the crises in Libya, Mali and Nigeria, and is facing a growing threat of insurgency along its borders. The country contributes to the Multinational Joint Task Force (MNJTF) to fight the Boko Haram insurgency in the Lake Chad and is a key contributor to G5-Sahel, which also includes Burkina-Faso, Mali, Mauritania and Chad.
Given that public information about procurements is restricted, it is difficult to evaluate if requirements are derived from a national defence and security strategy. However, due to the growing threats, Niger is facing, it is likely to be the case. It should also be noted that the new National Security and Defence Strategy (PNSD) is still under review (2) and had not been published yet, as of July 2018. The strategy currently in use for development and security dates back to 2011 (SDS Sahel-Niger) (3).

An interviewee stated that the last time the Inspector General of the Army conducted oversight of procurement was in 2016. As for the Security and Defence Commission in the Lower House (NA), it is not involved in the oversight of procurements or the consideration of procurement needs. Additionally, the assessor did not find evidence of additional legislative scrutiny of actual purchases (1), (2).   

The inspector general of the army lacks resources to carry out field missions, so auditing is not conducted to establish whether purchases are always made based on clearly identified requirements (1). It is also plausible that Niger’s authorities do not have a complete and precise picture of the requirements for equipment and operational capabilities of its personnel, which rapidly evolves in the context of insecurity and recurrent attacks. Therefore, even though significant acquisitions are likely to be made as part of the strategic concerns (2,3) actual purchases might not always correspond to exact needs. 

The procurement requirements are difficult to assess as they are subject to considerable secrecy. The National Audit Office has the responsibility to audit the following issues concerning the defence sector: “Examines and audits all payment and receipt vouchers prepared and presented by the ministries, departments and agencies. This includes overhead and capital accounts.
i. ii. Audit of all Bank Reconciliation statements
ii. Audit of Monthly Transcripts
iii. Audit of Vote Book
iv. Examination of the repayment and post audit of Pension and Gratuity files
v. Audits of procurement of arms and ammunition.
vi. Carrying out audits of armories of the Army, Navy, Air Force Prisons, Immigration and Police Audit of Stores
vii. Audit of Stores
viii. Verification of Capital Assets
ix. Carry out revenue audit
x. Carry out audit of all ammunitions by Security Agencies
xi. Carrying out of appropriation audit.”
The audit of procurement of arms and ammunition falls under the competence of the National Audit Office. However, annual reports are often not released to the public and are subject to considerable delays (1).

In theory, scrutiny is conducted by the National Audit Office. However, the reports are subject to considerable delay and not accessible to the public. There is some ambiguity about which particular expenditures are covered because major security expenditures are extra-budgetary and not funded through the usual NASS process” (1). The Head of the Continuous Audit Team of the Federal Government, Mohammed Dikwa, on Tuesday said N50 billion was saved so far through the audit of security agencies payroll. Dikwa said this in Abuja at a meeting between their Continuous Audit Team, Minister of Finance and Heads of Para-Military agencies to discuss ways to clean up the payroll of the security agencies. The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) recalls that President Mohammadu Buhari had set up the Continuous Audit Team to look into the payroll of all Federal Government’s Ministries, Departments and Agencies. The team had already embarked on the audit of the Military payroll and enrolling them on the Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System (IPPIS) (1).
The payroll is subject to audit and the use of a sophisticated computerised system to track the payments versus the staff. However, it is also noticeable that there is less scrutiny concerning procurement of defence-related goods and services such as weapon systems. It does not appear that procurement decisions are well audited as problems with payroll payments are considerable when examined in detail (1). In the absence of public scrutiny about procurement processes, such problems are likely replicated there also.

The connection between certain purchases and the national strategy is not always clear. Some purchases appear to be reactions to security crises and not part of a long-term national strategy. Unlike 5-10 years ago, the military in recent years has purchased equipment that is broadly useful/tailored to counterinsurgency operations. The government has several accounts that are outside the purview of the law, which it uses to augment its spending. These include the Petroleum Savings Trust Fund (PTF, now defunct), the Nigeria Trust Fund, the Stabilization Account, dedicated accounts, the Oil Windfall and Special Debt Accounts, and External Loan Savings. Of these, only the first three were established by law or decree; the rest were created for administrative convenience by successive regimes with no clear rules for deposits and withdrawals. Auditing of these off-budget accounts is outside the constitutionally assigned role of the Office of the Auditor General for the Federation (OAuGF) (1), (2).

Formally, procurements are based on and derived from national security strategies. The Ministry of Defence’s 2012 White Paper on defence, the Long-Term Defence Development Plan 2014-2023 in 2014, as well as the June 2018 Strategic Defence Review (SDR) deal with forward planning and set the formal framework for potential purchases over the next decade [1]. The strategies are broad, and work is carried out to quantify the need for significant purchases. For instance, the 2018 SDR outlines strategic national priorities, such as developing tactical communications systems within the army, acquiring armoured vehicles, improving military transport vehicles over the next years.With regards to purchasing details (both qualitative and quantitative), the SDR also stated that by the end of 2018, the relevant Ministry of Defence and Army Departments would have developed a precise plan for future priorities, including purchases, for the needs of the Army [2].
In practice, the planned as well as actual procurements are derived from the documents outlined above and range from strategic to individual purchases [3]. The procurement procedure is based on the strategic document which defines the personal and material formation of the Army and its equipment needs. Based on the ascertained quality and quantity of the equipment for procurement, a purchase is made to obtain final technical specification. During the timeline planning and value determination, the procurement plan is sent to the Minister of Defence for approval and signature.
Since these are capital projects, the procurement needs arising are strictly in line with the national security strategies which also set the principles for long-term financing [3]. For instance, in November 2018, the Minister of Defence Radmila Sekerinska emphasised that the modernisation of the Army was in line with the SDR’s projections [4].
In 2019, a new Long-term Defence Capabilities Development Plan (LTDCDP) 2019-2028 was adopted by the Parliament. The document consolidated the long-term development goals and modernization and equipping priorities. [5]

Within the Ministry of Defence, procurements are scrutinised by the Internal Audit Department (IAD) and the Ministry’s Inspectorate. The IAD has unlimited access to information around all activities undertaken in the Ministry of Defence to check the integrity of its processes and systems, and to confirm that the established controls provide adequate protection against all types of errors, frauds and losses [1]. The Inspectorate, in accordance with Article 163 of the Law on Defence, supervises the implementation of this Law [2]. Both the IAD and the Inspectorate review minor as well as strategic purchases [3]. The IAD findings, however, are not made public. Its reports are submitted directly to the Minister. Reports from the Inspectorate spanning the last two years are published on the Ministry of Defence website. The lack of notes about procurements suggests that no irregularities have been reported over this recent period [4].
The State Audit Office provides external oversight. This office deals with all financial reports and compliance audits – including around procurements – of the Ministry of Defence [5]. The last reports from the Office date back to 2013 and outline irregularities in procurement planning, such as splitting a public procurement contract into different specific contracts of lower value, and the prolongation of deadlines for granting contracts in nine out of twenty revised procedures. However, no findings on financial irregularities related to specific procurements are found in the report [6].
The Parliament and the Committee on Defence and Security oversee the annual defence procurements. Their focus however is on the strategic purchases rather than the minor ones [7]. Over the last two years, the Committee has not debated purchases in the defence sector [8]. Neither the 2017 nor 2018 Ministry of Defence procurement plans have foreseen strategic purchases [9].
Classified procurements were not regulated by law and were exempt from this practice till 2019. The legal framework has been strengthened in 2019 by the new Law on Public Procurement and Law on Public Procurement in the Defence and Security.

Formally, all purchases are based on planned arrangements through the strategic documents. These documents and their procurement plans have been developed in line with NATO so no deviations from (political) commitments would be politically desirable. Moreover, the annual procurement plan of the Ministry of Defence, presented in January each year after the budget has been passed, leaves no room for deviations. Nonetheless, attempts to negotiate unplanned purchases were not uncommon. In 2016, in the midst of the deep political crisis, the then Minister of Defence Emil Dimitriev announced a major 300 million euro plan for rearmament. This, in his view, responded to national needs and was in accordance with NATO requirements and standards [1]. But no such major purchases were predicted within strategic documents, such as the White Paper on Defence [2]. Eventually, the plan didn’t came to fruition, partly due to the the change of government, but it nonetheless demonstrated political attempts to Ministry of Defenceify strategic plans.
In addition, unplanned purchases can happen, but only during exceptional circumstances such as war, and these are regulated by the Law on Defence [3].

As a rule, all procurement requirements are derived from the long-term plan for the Norwegian Armed Forces [1]. The long-term plan provides a framework for national security and defence strategy. The Ministry of Defence presents a new long-term plan every 4-5 years [2, 3]. In addition, the Ministry of Defence prepares a White Paper on the national defence industry strategy, which defines a framework for cooperation with industry based on national security interests and the specific needs of the Norwegian Armed Forces [4]. This White Paper is published at irregular intervals. In Norway as in most other countries, there are, however, examples of defence investment decisions being made for other political reasons, primarily to support national industry, rather than strictly security/defence considerations. One recent example is of the decision to build the Skjold-class corvettes [5]. The investment appeared to be controversial and was criticised by the subsequent Chiefs of Defence [6]. In 2016 Parliament decided to phase out the the Skjold-class corvettes until 2025. As a result of the collision of the frigate Helge Ingstad, however, the decision had to be reversed as the corvettes will partially compensate for the lost frigate [7].

Procurement decisions are audited by the Office of Auditor General (OAG). For instance, in 2018 the OAG published a report based on the investigation of the procurement of the NH90 maritime helicopters and their implementation for the Norwegian Armed Forces [1]. Scrutiny is also conducted by the Standing Committee for Scrutiny and Constitutional Affairs, which is responsible for reviewing reports from the OAG [2]. The investigation of the procurement of the NH90 maritime helicopters revealed significant delays in delivery, the NH90 helicopters’ limited operating capacity, huge maintenance requirements and high operating costs. The Committee for Scrutiny and Constitutional Affairs agreed with the conclusions of the OAG’s report. The question of the procurement being in line with national security strategy was not one of the primary focuses of the investigation. The lOAG last conducted a more general investigation of the Norwegian Armed Forces’ material investments in 2004-5 [3, 4]. This investigation focused on evaluating the achievement of objectives with regard to timely delivery as well as agreed quality and costs. The OAG criticised inefficient management and planning, but did not consider the consistency of individual procurements with strategy.

The PRINSIX project model, which is used by the Norwegian Armed Forces, defines the methodology for the procurement cycle and for identifying the requirements [1]. This includes resource planning, which is used to determine the appropriate type and quantity of a procurement to meet the needs of the Norwegian Armed Forces. In addition, the Ministry of Defence annually submits a proposal on investments in the defence sector to Parliament [2, 3]. The proposal outlines the justification of purchases with regard to the national security and defence strategy presented in the long-term plan for the Norwegian Armed Forces, estimate cost and a summary of the quality control report at the conceptual stage. The MoD’s annual proposal on investments in the defence sector has to be approved by the Norwegian Parliament. In its most recent recommendations for 2019 and 2020 respectively, the Committee on Foreign Affairs and Defence has explicitly confirmed that “all investments are in accordance with the long-term plan for the Norwegian Armed Forces” [4, 5]. The proposals were approved by the majority of Parliament in plenary both in 2019 and 2020, and the minutes show that none of the MPs pointed out any procurement exceptions to the long-term plan [6, 7]. There were also no objections from Parliament to the MoD’s proposals on investments in the defence sector for 2016, 2017 and 2018 [8, 9, 10].

There is no national defence or security strategy which is available for the public; however, there is speculation that there may be one (1), (2). Additionally, procurement policies and procedures are not derived from any strategy. According to a source, the procurements procedures are bureaucratic policies rather than laws (2). There is no evidence of procurement requirements in government websites or state-run media outlets (3), (4), (5).

As established in Q8A, there are no independent well-resourced mandated oversight bodies to scrutinize activities of the Ministry of Defence according to the BTI 2018 Report (1). Further, our sources confirm that there is no oversight mechanism managed or implemented by an independent and well-resourced institute (2), (3). The only information available on actual purchases was found on international defence-related websites (4), (5). Given the lack of transparency around actual purchases, no evidence was found of oversight and scrutiny procedures either.

Purchases are usually implemented outside the national defence strategy (1), (2). The purchases are either bureaucratic in nature or politically motivated (2).

There is no national defence/security strategy, which makes the procedures in place for general procurements follow the civil administration guidelines of the PA. According to sources and the websites of the MoF and the respective security agencies, there is no evidence of a strategy (1), (2). Although there is no defence strategy, there are security sector strategic plans, co-developed with donors, that offer remarkable bases for some procurements. This strategy is used, minimally, in the bureaucratic process (3).

As no strategy covers defence and security sector procurement and purchases, there is no oversight on how procurements or needs of purchase are being driven, as per senior officials within the financial department of the military agencies. Scrutiny is occasionally conducted by the SAABC and the specialized auditing department (for military agencies) within the MoF (1), (2). According to their websites, both the SAABC and the MoF do inspect and scrutinize all agencies of the PA, including the security agencies. However, it is not clear what kind of inspection exactly they do and what time (before, after, or general inspection). Purchases are determined following the pre-set plan, which is presented in the strategic plan, but some purchases are made without reference to the plan due to emergency needs (2), (3), (4), (5), (6), (7).

There is no national strategy, and therefore, all purchases are outside. In many cases, the purchases are opportunistic, as it is politically influenced or commanders have strong relationships with businesses that need to sell them goods (1). However, as there are sectoral strategies developed with donors, some of the purchases, funded by the donors, are purchased based on clearly defined needs. The process of identifying and quantifying needs is monitored by external and internal auditors, but this is not continuously done. This is done through the Ministry of Interior, which ensures that projects are aligned with the objectives of the strategic plan of the security sector and its executive tools (2), (3), (4).

Whilst major procurement requirements do adhere to strategic objectives, some deals may occasionally deviate from these and be more strongly motivated by shorter-term political ends [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6].

Whilst mechanisms for scrutiny do exist (for example congressional committees, audits and the media), the level of scrutiny is not as high or consistent as it could be [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6]. Mechanisms include an annual report submitted to the President and Congress on the status of the Revised AFP Modernisation Act Trust Fund and a quarterly report on the progress of the implementation of the modernisation programme [7].

Purchases are systematically based on priorities that are outlined; absent are the political and institutional variables mentioned earlier [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6].

The Defence Concept of the Republic of Poland (May 2017), gives only very general indications on acquisition needs. They are too broad to indicate specific technical requirements or necessary quantities for the next stages of acquisition planning. [1, 2]. In practice, the system of development of operational requirements and technical-tactical requirements is inefficient due to a lack of prioritization and proper financial planning (excessive budgets are not based on actual multiyear financial abilities). As a result, the total budgets of armament programmes exceed financial resources designated in the Plan of Modernisation of Armed Forces [3].

The strategy documents are too general in nature to indicate clearly identified and quantified requirements, and whether real scrutiny is provided [1]. In many cases, requirements, which are not realistic, should be justified at the procurement stage [2].
The very beginning of the procedure is strongly formalized, i.e. purchase of military equipment require the Inspectorate of Armament to obtain the acceptance of the secretary of state responsible for modernization. The application in this case contains obligatory indication of documents specifying requirements for this equipment (e.g. technical assumptions developed in the conceptual analytical phase based on operational requirements).[3]

Formally all procurements are based on a set of identified and quantified requirements. However, they are developed after the strategic planning stages. In many cases, they need to be changed at the procurement stage, as the requirements provided earlier are not realistic (excessively high) [6, 7]. Requirements are not stable, they may change due to political reasons, such as a change of minister. There is no cross-party consensus on the direction of modernisation of the armed forces. The parliamentarian defence committee has not developed a consensus [7]. The issue is that the declared priorities often change, and then the purchasing procedures are extended [1]. An example of this may be the selection of helicopters [2, 3, 4] and submarines that have been postponed for many years [5].

While the defence planning cycle is clearly formalised (refer to Q58A) and there is a basis in the National Strategic Defence Concept (NSDC) for most, if not all major procurement operations budgeted in the Military Planning Act, there is no clear, quantified link between the NSDC and actual purchases, as exemplified by a government decision on the purchase of five KC-390 planes [1]. There are at least some reported difficulties in translating the NSDC into concrete procurement planning [2].

The Court of Accounts (CA) scrutinises defence procurement either via ex-ante review [1] or via ex-post audit [2], but these are insufficient insofar as they do not encompass all procurement and ex-post audit occurs with severe delays. As the CA holds a mandate to scrutinise formal procedures and accounting correctness, it only tangentially assesses procurement against strategy.

The consistency shown in the Military Planning Act [1] and explanatory notes, in addition to the yearly State Budget [2, 3, 4, 5, 6], suggests clear identification, while requirements are also justified. There is clear justification to be found in purchases where broader strategic considerations are not made. The question posed by Q63A remains, to the extent that there is no hard link between strategy and procurement.

There is no evidence of the existence of a defence procurement strategy. The only information of relevance to Qatar’s defence procurement is linked to Barazan Holdings [1,2]. The company was established to enhance Qatar’s defence capabilities and investments, in addition to improving the procurement strategy of the defence and military sector. However, apart from a brief mention in the company’s aims, there is nothing to suggest that improving procurement strategy for the defence sector is on the agenda. It is also impossible to assess whether procurement requirements are derived from a strategy, as there is no information on actual purchases and procurement.

It has been established throughout this assessment that the defence sector is not typically subject to any form of scrutiny, and that its purchases are not subject to scrutiny either. There is no external entity tasked with overseeing, auditing or scrutinising defence institutions. In relation to procurement, defence institutions are exempt from the Tender Committee Law [1,2,3]. The defence sector is also exempt from Audit Law No. 11 (2016) [4].

As has been established above, Qatar does not seem to have a national security and defence strategy, or its strategy is kept secret. Due to that, this sub-indicator has been marked as Not Applicable, as assessing purchases vis-a-vis a national strategy is irrelevant in this context [1,2].

According to Article 4 of Federal Law No. 275 ‘On State Defence Orders’, the defence order plan is defined in accordance with the Military Doctrine, the State Armament Programme, the economy mobilisation plan, international military cooperation plans and a few other regulations [1]. Among these, only the Military Doctrine is publicly and fully available [2]. In addition, all these regulations are interchangeable and can be cross-amended during the realisation period [3,4]. It is therefore impossible to establish a direct link down from the Military Doctrine or Armament Program to the planned defence purchases.

The problem of public funds being misused, especially in the defence sector, is notorious. To solve it, the government set out a few oversight mechanisms. In 2016, for example, the Ministry of Finance introduced a ‘treasury management’ system for public funds [1]. All state ordering parties were required to open a bank account in the Federal Treasury so that the money for state orders would only be transferred to the ordering party following a full check of the need for the purchase. However, in 2017, defence orders were excluded from this oversight mechanism [2].

In 2017, President Putin asked the Federal Security Service to ‘scrutinise’ the spending of public funds assigned for state defence orders [3].

According to Article 4 of Federal Law No. 275 ‘On State Defence Orders’, the defence order plan is defined in accordance with the Military Doctrine, the State Armament Programme, the economy mobilisation plan, international military cooperation plans and a few other regulations [1]. Among these, only the Military Doctrine is publicly and fully available [2]. In addition, all these regulations are interchangeable and can be cross-amended during the realisation period [3,4]. It is therefore impossible to establish a direct link down from the Military Doctrine or Armament Program to the planned defence purchases.

In addition, Article 5, Clause 3 of Federal Law No. 275 stipulates that defence orders may be amended within the limits of key indicators of the defence order, taking into account the results of the placement of the order or amendments to the federal budget [1].

Information on open defence procurements, including full documentation, can be found on the central government procurement website [7]. An analysis of random orders shows that the quality and quantity requirements are clearly identified [8].
There is no way to check the actual military purchases as they are totally classified and not publicly available [5]. The rules of closed procedures have been described in Articles 84-92 of Federal Law No. 44 ‘On the Contract System for the Procurement of Goods, Work and Services to Meet State and Municipal Needs’ [6]. However, we may say that the order plan does adhere to some clear, yet general, requirements set by the president. For example, the current State Armament Programme stipulates the requirement to increase the percentage of new, modern arms in the arms stock to 70% [4]. That is exactly what the president ordered in 2012 in the plan for military development and construction [9].

There is no way to link the formally established requirements of the Military Doctrine and the other regulations to the defence purchases.

Although there is a new defence strategy within the armed forces, it is had to assess whether the procurement requirements are derived from any overarching strategy. According to our sources, procurement requirements are not derived from the strategy. The various units and departments within the MoD are still adapting and trying to restructure their work based on the strategy. Some procedures define purchases, their criteria, and requirements (1), (2).

Interviewee’s said, there are no oversight mechanisms or scrutiny over actual purchases. The consultative body, the Auditing Bureau and the internal units have no authority and are not able to access information to conduct reliable oversight (1), (2).

According to our sources, major MoD purchases are politically motivated. They are deals with billions of UDS to be an ally of major powers and buy political positions through such deals (1), (2). There are many indications that Saudi Arabia makes defence purchases that are not driven by quantified requirements. An example of this is major arms procurement deals, that are agreed between Saudi authorities and key allies, outside of the planned defence budget. These deals sometimes appear to be tied to political aims, such as solidifying and cementing strategic alliances including with allies, for example, France, the US and the UK (3), (4), (5). They can also be a form of quid pro quo for political support and/or and military protection (6). As referenced in the 2015 report, the military’s arms budget itself is dictated by annual oil revenues rather than defence strategy or comprehensive budgetary planning, and actual spending commonly exceeds planned expenditure (7).

The fundamental documents for defence policy are the National Security Strategy, the Defence Strategy and the military doctrine, the last is one not publicly available. The strategies present general policy objectives and principles. Based on these documents, lower-level planning documents are drafted (Strategic Defence Review, long- and mid-term development plans for defence sector). These documents should provide a more detailed analysis of the required capabilities and concrete ways to attain them [1]. These documents should provide a basis for annual financial and procurement plans. However, the fact that all documents in the hierarchy between National Security Strategy, Defence Strategy and annual financial (budgets) and procurement plans are entirely classified prevents monitoring whether procurement requirements are consequently derived from strategic objectives and priorities.
That said, there is some evidence of a significant discrepancy between the Long-Term Development Plan (LTDP) 2011-2020 and practice. As it was confirmed to the BCSP by the MoD, the LTDP envisages procurement of a ʻnew generationʼ multi-purpose fighter jets [2]. Following this, a project was drafted to implement the modernisation of the training aircraft Super Galeb G-4 to enable pilots to train for flying fighter jets with more advanced electronics in the cockpit. Even though this project was assigned financial means in annual budgets (adopted by the Government and passed by the National Assembly), as of 2017 it did not commence because – paradoxically – it had not officially been authorised by the Government [3]. In 2017, Serbia was donated six Mig-29 fighter jets by the Russian Federation. Furthermore, Serbia is considering the acquisition of four more Mig-29 aircraft from Belarus [4]. The donated planes were produced between 1989 and 1991and mostly use analogue cockpit equipment [5], which makes Super Galeb modernisation project unnecessary. In the budget for 2018, there is an item “Modernisation of training and fighter aircraft,” assigned the same amount as Super Galeb modernisation project in 2017, but without explicit mentioning of this type of aircraft [6, 7].

Defence system development plans or policies have not been subject to parliamentary scrutiny. The Defence and Internal Affairs Committee (DIAC) has not deliberated on proposed annual financial plans of the Ministry of Defence before budget adoption in the National Assembly. The MoD does inform the DIAC about implemented and some of the planned acquisitions and the ongoing developments in military-technical cooperation with partner countries in its quarterly reports, but there is no debate on procurement requirements and their links with strategies/defence system development plans [1]. The State Audit Institution has not performed-audited acquisitions in the security sector yet, but it ought to be noted that its current capacities limit it to one to two performance audits per year in the entire public sector.

The MoD and the SAF have a complex process for financial and procurement planning. When it comes to arms and military equipment, internal regulation requires a tactical study and a preceding analysis to be developed for each item the military would need [1]. Elaborate procedures are set for research and development, technology transfer, preparation for within-country production (the Serbian MoD also runs a national defence industry) and procurement from abroad [1].

The Rulebook on Equipping Serbian Armed Forces with Armament and Military Equipment (RESAF) passed in 2016 introduces the category of urgent programmes, unknown to previous regulations. Urgent programmes are exempt from the aforementioned procedures, though they have to be based on studies containing tactical and technical requirements for particular acquisitions, they have to be approved by the minister with the previous consultation of the Chief of General Staff and market analysis before an acquisition is still compulsory [2]. However, RESAF prescribes that all urgent programmes are implemented through procurement in the field of defence and security exempt from the Law, even though this is not stipulated in the law itself. Furthermore, the fact that urgent programmes are exempt from the usual planning procedures raises concerns that they may be misused to streamline undue political influence by arms sellers and procure arms and military equipment which are not in line with the SAF standards [3].

Regarding general public procurement planning, the process is organised in such way that each MoD/SAF unit submits its proposal for goods, services and works it ought to have procured (“a wish list”) to the Procurement Department in a form set in the Rulebook Regulating Public Procurement Procedure in the MoD and SAF (the Rulebook) [4]. This form encompasses questions about market analysis results, requirements for additional training to use procured goods, requirements for spare parts, tools and materials, expiry dates for use/servicing period of the procured item and foreseen time frame of testing the procured goods following technical regulations [5]. Also, the Rulebook prescribes a range of criteria for procurement planning, including 1) if the procured item would contribute to the objectives defined in the long and mid-term defence system development plans; and 2) whether technical specifications and proposed quantity match actual needs of the MoD and SAF [6].

Singapore’s defence policy, threat assessment, and procurement targets have been consistently and openly articulated during the annual Committee of Supply debates and Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) Day media interviews [1, 2]. Independent defence analysts have noted that procured equipment has been appropriate to meet stated defence policy goals [3, 4].

All procurement decisions are subject to intense scrutiny by the Auditor General’s Office (AGO) [1]. The AGO has been recognised as an impartial auditing authority that has underpinned public confidence in the incorruptibility of procurement decisions, although its work is not immediately available or visible to the public [2]. Other procurement safeguards include scrutiny by other groups such as the Public Accounts Committee which examines various government accounts showing the appropriation of funds granted by Parliament to meet public expenditure, as well as the Government Parliamentary Committee for Defence and Foreign Affairs (GPC-DFA) [3].

There is no evidence that the Ministry of Defence (MINDEF) and the Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) engage in opportunistic or unplanned spending. Acquired equipment generally has an announced procurement target, consistent with current defence policy and threat assessments [1, 2].

All armament acquisitions within the Department of Defence (DoD) are required to go through numerous review and assessment steps, with the requirement being validated at multiple stages to ensure it remains aligned to the prevailing national defence and security strategy [1].

While South Africa does not have a regularly updated, documented and publicly available National Security Strategy [2], DoD acquisition is aligned to the White Paper on Defence, the 2014/2015 Defence Review, the Defence Strategic Plan, and the Defence and Military Strategy [3]. From these various short, medium, and long-term plans are regularly re-generated according to both the overarching strategy and force design and prevailing budget conditions. For instance, a Force Structure Plan (FSP) is updated and compared to existing capabilities, after which several Force Development Plans (FDP) are created to map out the achievement of the desired force structure over the long-term while taking into account available acquisition budgets.

The services and divisions draw on the FDPs to perform operational gap analyses and create a Required Operational Capability (ROC) for each required new combat grouping or user system needed. Thereafter they are referred to the Operations Staff Council (OSC) chaired by the Chief of Joint Operations for consideration and review against the long-term strategic plans of the DoD. If approved, the ROC is listed on the Strategic Capital Acquisition Master Plan, a long-term planning document and tool, provided with a code name by Defence Intelligence, and receives a budget for a limited planning staff contingent and is assigned a Project Officer.

Once approved, the project officer and service create a Staff Target (ST) which estimates the total financial ceiling required, the funds required for each phase and year of the project, and the required timelines [4]. The Staff Target is a key document and must be approved by the Armaments Acquisition Steering Board (AASB), chaired by the secretary for defence.[4]. In cases of Cardinal Projects (defined as being those with higher than usual inherent risk, an urgent operational need, a high political profile, or a project where the peak expenditure is equal to or greater than 15% of the available acquisition budget for that year) authorisation is required from the Armaments Acquisition Council (AAC) chaired by the minister of defence & military veterans. For projects considered highly strategic approval is required by the entire Cabinet [5], but no such acquisition has occurred since the 1999 SDPP.

Each acquisition then moves through multiple steps, including a Staff Requirement (SR), Project Study Report (PSR), Development Plan (DP), and Acquisition Plan (AP) along with a number of logistics, integration, operational, and end-of-life phase-out plans, with the Acquisition Plan requiring the same level of oversight and scrutiny as the original Staff Target to ensure that before any acquisition is conducted that the requirement remains valid and aligned to national strategic requirements [1]. However, the official Military Strategy document is not public, making it difficult to assess to what extent requirements are in line with it.

There are overlapping responsibilities within the DoD to audit acquisition projects. The Inspector-General of the Department of Defence (IG-DoD) conducts both quinquennial large-scale planned audits as well as ad hoc audits each year of acquisition projects. The DoD Internal Audit Division is responsible for conducting annual assurance audits on projects using a risk-based approach, to ensure compliance with internal controls. Once projects have entered the phase where Armscor has become involved as the acquisition manager, they are subject to Armscor’s internal audit policy and procedure. The Auditor-General of South Africa (AGSA) audits both the DoD and Armscor, selecting a representative sample of projects for direct scrutiny [1].

In terms of policy the National Assembly Portfolio Committee on Defence & Military Veterans and/or the Joint Standing Committee on Defence are meant to be able to provide legislative oversight, however, this is limited by a lack of proper information sharing by the DoD [2] and the recent refusal of the committee chairs to hold closed sessions in which projects could be discussed [3].

According to interviewee 2, all acquisitions since the 1999 Arms Deal have been conducted in line with first DAP 1000 and its successor Defence Acquisition Handbook (DAHB) 1000 [1].

The Ministry of National Defence (MND)’s Defence White Paper, which includes the national security strategy and defence policies, outlines South Korea’s defence needs and defence procurement plans. It contains potential defence procurement plans which align with the national defence strategy. [1] [2] For example, in 2018, the MND stated that potential defence purchases, such as stealth fighter jets (F-35) and unmanned aerial vehicles, would be made to enhance the combat power of the Air Force. [1]

Despite the existence of the multiple oversight mechanisms, including the parliamentary committee and the Bureau of Audit and Inspection (BAI), there is limited evidence showing the successful audit process with a focus on reviewing procurement decisions. The National Defence Committee at the National Assembly is responsible for reviewing overall defence policy, as well as defence budgets regarding defence procurement plans through the committee meeting or parliamentary annual audit. [1] Given the defence and security environment in South Korea, the Committee is likely to focus on defence policy related to North Korean issues on the white paper, rather than examining procurement decisions. Media reports show that the members of the committee concentrated on whether the government referred to North Korea as an enemy when the white paper was published in 2018. [2] [3]

In South Korea, defence purchases are clearly based on the Defence Acquisition Programme Act. Article 15 of the Act requires that the Chairman of the Joint Chief of Staff should objectively and rationally determine the requirements for weapons systems through the Joint Chiefs of Staff. [1] The Enforcement Decree of the Defence Acquisition Programme Act goes into detail. Article 22 of the Enforcement Decree explains decision-making processes regarding the requirements of defence procurement and purchases. It contains necessity, concept of operation, the timing of fielding, the capability required for operations, as well as overall planning for national defence policies. [2]

The defence policy is a public document but there is no detailed language in it about defence procurement tied to objectives spelt out in the paper. [1] Instead defence policy documents such as “Transformation Strategy 2017: Part 1: Objective Force 2017” and “Transformation Programme 2012– 2017” expound on the SPLA White Paper on Defence in a more detailed manner, spelling out procurement requirements in tandem with a key objective of the White Paper: Force Transformation. One of the key aims of force transformation is improving operation capabilities. In line with this aim, “Transformation Programme 2012– 2017” stipulated the purchase of fixed wing aircraft after 2017. [2] But to date, the army lacks fixed wing aircraft and is still reliant on helicopters for transport and combat purposes. There is also no public talk by senior army leaders about the procurement requirements of the army and no public bids for contracts have been announced on fixed wing aircraft so far, according to a review of key media outlets covering South Sudan. [3] With an arms embargo in place, it is expected that there would be no ‘public talk’ on procurement requirements or bids on fixed-wing aircraft. The Security and Defence Review Board is expected to develop a new security and defence policy but there is no indication of when this might happen.

There is no publicly available information to score this indicator; as such, it is marked ‘Not Enough Information’. While institutions such as the National Audit Chamber, the Security/Defence Committee and the army inspector general’s office are supposed to scrutinise defence procurement to ensure that it conforms to the dictates of the SPLA White Paper on Defence, there is no evidence in the public domain to show that this has happened. [1] A review of media outlets shows none of this has happened. [2]

The Ministry of Defence bases at least its major purchases on clearly identified requirements, but there are opportunistic and unplanned purchases. For instance, nowhere in the defence policy documents, “Transformation Strategy 2017: Part 1: Objective Force 2017” and “Transformation Programme 2012– 2017”, is the purchase of helicopter gunships mentioned. Rather, the focus was on the purchase of fixed wing aircraft after 2017. [1] But in 2015, the Defence Ministry reportedly purchased three Mi-24 helicopters from Motor Sich, a Ukrainian company, for $42.8 million, according to the UN Panel of Experts on South Sudan established by the United Nations Security Council. [2]

Both the current National Directive for Defence [1] and the National Security Strategy in place [2] refer to threats and challenges, but they do not address procurement. The 2003 Strategic Defence Review did and justified a significant part of the purchases [3], and there is the official documentation on defence, derived from the National Security Strategy addressing procurement. But weapon procurements in Spain are often not referred to as a military capacity linked to a strategic objective of the National Security Strategy [4]. In his appearance before Congress on 6 October 2010, the Spanish Secretary of State for Defence Constantino Méndez admitted that: “(…) we should not have acquired or acquire systems for the present and future that we are not going to use for confrontational scenarios that do not exist, and what is more serious, with money that we have neither at the time when you governed and had to make decisions nor now” [5]. Felix Artega, of the Royal Institute Elcano, stated that “decisions on major weapons programmes have not been taken in line with defence needs but rather mainly as a result of political, industrial and social criteria” [6]. He added three concrete examples (see example section). These examples are amongst the main Armaments Special Programmes, the cost of which will be completed in the mid-2020s.

According to Bernardo Navazo, the fact is that “a strategic framework document supported unanimously on which are the greatest risks and threats that Spain faces (to which any acquisition should refer) has allowed that there have been occasions in which the purchase of military material has not followed the criteria of priority, cost-efficiency or strategic relevance” does not exist [4].

“For example, in order to be able to build Leopard tanks in Seville and Asturias, the Airbus 440M in Seville and Tigre helicopters in Albacete, more equipment was purchased than the Armed Forces needed. In the same way, participation in European programmes like the Eurofighter plane was agreed on to support the European industry despite the greater cost of equipment and the availability of aircraft that met the military’s needs, like the F-18. Finally, orders and the timetable of naval construction have been decided more in line with the workload of national shipyards than with the needs of the Navy” [5].

The vast majority of the economic volume of arms procurement in Spain is related to the Special Armament Programmes (PEAs). Only six PEAs (out of 26) have been audited, and only once, by a body independent of the Ministry of Defence [1], but the rest were never audited by an organ external to the Ministry of Defence, whilst this ministry has carried out an internal review of the programs [2]. An audit proposal was rejected in 2014 by the Defence Commission [3], contrary to what was done by the Federal Court of Accounts of Germany, for instance [4]. Details about the PEAs are known, but many others are not public. There is no information about potential “irregularities or breaches in the contracts which would provide grounds for challenging them and might help to pave the way to their denunciation and reduction” [5]. For many years, it was not known the percentage of aid in R&D credits granted to military companies that had been returned.

Non-PEA procurement has very rarely been audited by an independent body (the Court of Audits), and there is no evidence of any scrutiny on procurement decisions by a parliamentary oversight committee or related body to confirm that procurement is in line with national security strategy or that work is undertaken to quantify the need for purchases. Accountability may be provided with the occasional appearances in the Parliament of the secretaries of state for defence and commerce. The Ministry of Defence has argued that, according to Royal Decree 372/2020, of 18 February, Article 13 entrusts the General Defence Intervention, functionally dependent on the General Administration Intervention of the State, to exercise permanent financial control and public auditing within the scope of the Ministry of Defence and the public bodies dependent on it, and “an audit would not be necessary, since the Defence intervention body is already doing it” [6].

Whilst qualifying purchases as opportunistic in nature may be excessive, it is unclear to what extent Spain’s major purchases (the Special Armament Programmes) relate to clearly identified requirements. In any case, a significant part of the PEAs appear to not be related to the defence needs of Spain as they are defined in the National Security Strategy, and this is the opinion of certain experts mentioned above. Examples provided in the aforementioned sections represent evidence of the gap between needs and actual purchases [1, 2, 3].

No evidence was found to suggest that any national defence and/or national security strategies exist or that procurement planning is centralised or even conducted with any coordination between the military and the Ministries of Defence and Finance. The Ministry of Defence website no longer works at all [1] and the Ministry of Finance website’s ‘Procurement’ links contain no information [2].

No evidence was found to suggest that defence purchases are formally scrutinised by any government entities, independent or not. The only perceivable scrutiny of defence purchases appears to have been carried out by civil society organisations and media organisations. Until the previous regime’s ouster in April 2019, non-government entities in Sudan were afraid to raise their voices too loudly or pry too deeply into procurements that the government, the military and their defence partners deliberately obscured; much of the critical scrutiny of Sudan’s defence procurements has been conducted by entities outside of Sudan, such as Global Witness [1] and The Sentry [2]. The revolution that ousted the regime paved the way for both civil society and the media to put more pressure on the transitional government to increase transparency in the planning and monitoring of defence procurements, but this is slow to come about while the public warily observes that military forces – most prolifically the RSF – are still capable and willing to use violence against civilians who are perceived as a threat to their objectives.

No evidence was found to suggest that defence purchases are based on any requirements set by the Ministry of Defence, Office of the Presidency or any other institution of governance. Phone interviews with two experts on Sudan’s defence sector confirmed that defence purchase priorities and authorisations usually derive from the leadership of the various defence force components [1,2]. One expert [1] summarised: ‘Sudan essentially has two governments: 1) the cabinet of ministers, who have no authority over soldiers or police, and 2) the chiefs of the army and national police, who can move forces and police’. He added that all of the revenue coming in from industries owned by these forces are only accessible to the latter, and not to ministers, to use for purchases as the commanders see fit. GAN Integrity’s Sudan report, published on its Risk and Compliance Portal, summarises as follows: ‘Public procurement in Sudan presents companies with a very high risk of corruption. A system of patronage, cronyism and nepotism distorts the market competition’ [3].

Procurement requirements are generally derived from a national defence and security strategy and specified in documents like the Armed Forces’ ‘Planned Materiel Supply’ [1] and the Swedish Armed Forces (SAF) [2] and Swedish Defence Materiel Administration Agency (FMV) [3] annual regulation letters. However, there have been examples of unjustified procurements. For example, recently published research [4] has shown that in 2013, ‘the Swedish Defense Materiel Administration ordered 14 empty [JAS Gripen] airframes in an effort to keep production lines open at the national arms producer Saab’. These airframes ‘were for previous versions of the fighter jet … and there was no plan to order the rest of the necessary parts’. This FMV order, the article argues, reflects the ‘tight-knit relationship between state actors and the arms industry in Sweden’ which tends to favour certain companies like Saab (see also Q64).

There is active scrutiny conducted by a number of legally or constitutionally mandated oversight mechanisms – centrally, the parliamentary Defence Committee [1] and the National Audit Office [2] – to confirm that procurement is in line with national security strategy.

The Defence Materiel Administration Agency and the Armed Forces base at least their major purchases on the clearly identified requirements as set out in the materiel acqusition plans [1], but there are opportunistic and unplanned purchases. For example, recently published research [2] has shown that in 2013, ‘the Swedish Defense Materiel Administration ordered 14 empty [JAS Gripen] airframes in an effort to keep production lines open at the national arms producer Saab’. These airframes ‘were for previous versions of the fighter jet … and there was no plan to order the rest of the necessary parts’. An interviewee statement further indicates that R&D and procurement projects tend to be ‘gold plated’, i.e. that projects are too ambitiously designed and thus increase drastically in costs over time [3].

At the heart of all national defence planning is the Federal Council’s armament strategy [1]. The MASTERPLAN is developed by the Armed Forces Staff [2]. It covers planning for eight years, and the MASTERPLAN is continuously re-worked. The document defines the required capabilities and translates the strategic goals and the medium and long-term planning into short term steps, and an investment plan is derived. The plan is approved by the minister of defence [3]. Every year the government submits a “Message” (“Armeebotschaft”) to parliament containing a defence spending plan (“Rüstungsprogramm”) and a property plan (“Immobilienprogramm”) [4]. Since 2017, the Armeebotschaft also contains framework credits for military materiel [5]. Currently, the parliament defines then the so-called “payment frame” (“Zahlungsrahmen”) for four years. It did so for the first time in 2016. The “Zahlungsrahmen” is subdivided into several specific credits including financing of current effectiveness and needs, Equipment and Renewal (AEB), Projects, Testing and Procurement preparation (PEB), Ammunition (AMB), and the property plan [5].

Article 12.4 of the Federal Finances Act states that the federal finances have to be managed “according to urgency and economically [Dringlichkeit und Sparsamkeit]” and that federal agencies have to ensure efficiency and efficacy (“wirksam und wirtschaftlich”) [1]. Both chambers of the Federal Assembly have security committee, the Security Policy Committee (SPC). There are 13 members on the States Council and 25 on the Commission of the National Assembly. They have extensive rights to scrutinize questions related to defence [2]. There is also the sub-committee of the Finance Committee of the Federal Assembly, which oversees the Federal Department of Defence, Civil Protection and Sport (DDPS) and the Federal Department of Justice and Police’s (FDJP) financial matters. It has the same powers as the SPC [3, 4]. There is the Swiss Federal Audit Office (SFAO) that audits and publishes reports on specific aspects of the processes within the DDPS [5]. The DDPS also has an independent internal audit department that has d its reports since 2015 [6].

All purchases are based on the Basic Principles of the Federal Council for the DDPS’ Armament Policy [1, 2]. Every year the government submits a “Message” (“Armeebotschaft”) to Parliament containing a defence spending plan (“Rüstungsprogramm”) and a property plan (“Immobilienprogramm”). Although the message does not contain a detailed list, it provides some details and justification for the more important purchases [3]. From 2017, the Armeebotschaft also contains framework credits for military materiel [4]. Currently, the Parliament defines the so-called “payment frame” (“Zahlungsrahmen”) for four years. It has done so for the first time in 2016. The “Zahlungsrahmen” is subdivided into several specific credits including financing of current effectiveness and needs, Equipment and Renewal (AEB), Projects, Testing and Procurement preparation (PEB), Ammunition (AMB), and the property plan. This is an opportunity for parliamentarians and the wider public to scrutinize the underlying rationale and how it fits into the larger strategic picture [3]. The SFAO audits and publishes reports on specific aspects of the processes within the DDPS [5].

Taiwan’s procurement requirements are derived from a national defence policy military strategy [1].
There is logical flow down from strategy to individual procurements. It includes, in the following order, subsequent programming stages (National defence strategy, military strategy, force planning concept and force build up plan) and planning stages (documentation of operational requirements, overall acquisition planning report). The General Staff HQ determines operational requirements, overall defence concept, and the needs of joint operations. [4].

However, there are occasions where procurements are not justified based on the national defence strategy, but instead on a combination of national security strategy and US factors [2]. For example, the question on “how much is enough” is a balance between people’s commitments, budget allocations, expectations from the military, and the interests of Washington, DC [3].

Whether or not procurements are aligned with national security strategy is under the authority of the Ministry of National Defence [1]. Legislators exercise powers of oversight and scrutiny with budget controlling mechanisms [2, 3, 4, 5]. The records suggests that legislators discuss the strategic environment of purchases rather then conformity with Taiwan’s strategic documents. [7,8]
In reality, policy papers on “National Security Strategy”, “National Defence Strategy”, and “National Military Strategy” have not been developed in Taiwan for the last five years. Once the budget is approved and sent out by the LY, legislators do not have a meaningful impact on the MND [2, 6].

Generally speaking, Taiwan’s armament procurements are based on clearly identified requirements derived from national defence policy and military strategy [1, 2, 3]. However, there are still opportunistic and unplanned purchases since Taiwan’s armament procurement is dominated by the US, and the Ministry of National Defence has to seize any strategic opportunity to acquire defence systems of quantity and quality to protect Taiwan’s national interests and security [3, 4].

The only relevant strategy is the National Defence Policy (2004). However, this document is out of date and a copy of it is not publicly available. [1] Given the lack of an available defence and security strategy or overarching policy, and the lack of information on procurement by defence organs in terms of planning and review and oversight of such purchases, procurement decisions cannot be linked to a policy.

The Public Procurement Authorities Performance Evaluation Reports for the review period make no mention of any particular procurement by defence and security organs. [1] There is very limited scrutiny from the Controller and Auditor General’s Office. [2] Reports of the Standing Committee for Foreign Affairs, Defence, and Security also make no reference to such procurement. [3]

An interviewee from the Ministry of National Defence stated that all purchases are based on relevant policy strategy and legislation. [1] However, the National Defence Policy of 2004 is not available, and is almost certainly outdated given the change in security environment in the region since 2004. It is therefore difficult to see that these purchases can be based in defence and security policy.

Thailand has been pursuing a military modernisation programme since the coup d’état in 2014 [1]. This also affects the procurement planning of the defence sector, with an increase in defence spending on weapons justified by explanations based on specific security risk assessments. General Prayut cited the need to upgrade the country’s weaponry and catch up with the defence capabilities of other countries [2].

In 2018, Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha and Deputy Prime Minister Prawit Wongsuwan, who were also leaders of the NCPO, have been credited for pushing Thailand’s 10-year military development programme entitled ‘Modernisation Plan: Vision 2026’. To support this plan, funds of up to 2% of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) are being allocated to defence [1]. The government justifies this effort as follows: to make the country, military, security agencies and public and civil sectors ready and equipped with the capacity needed to effectively protect and maintain national sovereignty and to prepare them for all forms and levels of multidimensional threats [3].

Since 2016, the new military government has placed additional focus on the procurement of armored vehicles, helicopters and frigates to counter southern insurgency and to strengthen its current military units. However, according to Drwiega and Willett (2018), defence commentators have highlighted the observation that there appears to be an unclear strategy in terms of coordinating equipment types and linking acquisition to strategic requirement; financially, the Modernisation Plan aims to increase existing defence spending, which is around 1.4% of Gross Domestic Product (GDP), to 2% of GDP by 2020 [4]. This is illustrated by an analysis written by Cod Satrusayang, which shows that submarines are not necessary for Thailand because large capital ships like cruisers and destroyers may not be the way forward for a country that is likely to fight more in coastal and littoral combat zones [5].

Since the military junta came to power in May 2014, led by Prayut Chan-o-cha, who now holds the roles of both Prime Minister and Minister of Defence, it has struggled to get the military budget increases it desired due to a range of factors, including economic underperformance and related domestic scrutiny [1]. In 2015, it was revealed that, regarding the Thai military, there has been no independent scrutiny of defence policy by the legislature, a lack of budget transparency and insufficient institutional measures concerning most aspects of the procurement cycle [2].

Since the 2019 general election, the Thai government’s defence spending has been a major issue that has come under the scrutiny of the opposition in budget-related parliamentary debate. This is because defence spending has risen to 233 billion baht (10.5 billion US dollars) in 2020, a 2.7% increase compared to the previous year, without sufficiently justified reasons [3]. During a parliamentary debate, Future Forward Party list MP Surachet Praweenwongvuth criticised the plan to purchase two submarines worth 22.5 billion baht. He claimed that the country is not at war, so the proposed budget should be in line with the current circumstances; more money should go towards developing human resources and education, which are far more important than arms purchases [4].

To support modernisation, the Vision 2026 plan outlined an objective to allocate up to 2% of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) to defence in 2018. In response to these expanding requirements, Thailand has procured a number of major platforms in recent years, but additional investment is said to be required in order to meet some of the threat scenarios that the country could face in the future [1].

Moreover, the Royal Thai Air Force (RTAF) has downplayed reports that it is planning to acquire a new fleet of high-tech, expensive fighter jets by endorsing the Air Force’s new policy, called the Concept of Project Requirements (COPR), allowing the purchase of defence and strategic hardware in the name of modernisation [2]. Nonetheless, defence commentators have pinpointed that the procurement plans and strategies are not consistent with each other, as demonstrated by inconsistencies between equipment types and strategic requirement [3].

According to our sources, although there is a defense strategy, it is no comprehensive and procurement are not derived from it. The procurement are not matched with the strategic plan(1,2).

According to our sources, there are several agencies that have a mandate to scrutinise the procurement procedures of the MoD. These instiutions include the internal auditing unit and the INLUCC (1,2). According to the decree on public procurement, public purchases are submitted to control at each stage of the procedure depending on the threshold of the transaction, the prior affirmation of the Procurement Control Commission and the Supreme Audit and Procurement Audit Commission (3). Several commissions at the level of the Presidency of Government and the Ministry of Defence are in charge of examining the regularity of the tendering procedures, the fairness, and the transparency of the procurement procedures, and ensuring the acceptability of its administrative and financial techniques (4). However, this process of scrutiny is not to check if the actual purchases are in line with the strategy.

According to our sources, major purchases such as tanks, armored vehicles, ammunition, and others are based on real needs and derived somehow indirectly from the strategy (1,2). Besides that, there are major purchases which are unplanned (less than a year of planning), which can be described as opportunistic based on the political and security situations (3).

In terms of major procurement projects: given that the top document in Turkey’s defence procurement, the 10-year Procurement Document (OYTEP) is ‘cosmic top secret’, meaning it is not accesible to the public, it is hard to provide any reliable insight into whether procurement requirements are derived from strategy documents or not. As such, it is impossible to assess whether procurement requirements derive from the strategy. However, it should be noted that all interviewees unanimously suggested that, as we have seen with the cases of the S-400 procurement, the Altay tank project and the TFX domestic aircraft project, procurement requirements are, in theory, formally derived from a national defence and security strategy [1,2,3,4,5,6]. The strategy from which procurement requirements are derived is likely to be weak, vague or insufficient and excessively politicised if this is a multi-million-dollar project.

For smaller procurements, mainly conducted by the Ministry of Defence under the category of ‘Urgent or Operational Needs’, we see a more transparent and accountable way of conducting the procurement cycle. This means that procurement requirements are partially derived from a national defence and security strategy. However, this document is not publicly available due to its being a ‘secret’ document. The Ministry of Defence publishes calls for bids on its official website [7] and derives all procurement requirements in a transparent fashion.

There is neither legislative nor civil society scrutiny conducted over multi-million-dollar defence/security purchases. Interviewee 3 suggested that all major SSB-run projects are currently under the full control of the presidential palace [1].

With regard to smaller procurements conducted by the Ministry of Defence under the category of ‘Urgent or Operational Needs’, Interviewee 3 and Interviewee 6 suggested that the Financial Audit Department at the Ministry of Defence and the Ministry of Defence’s Legal Advisory Department work very effectively on scrutiny and oversight, covering expenses both within Turkey and abroad [1,2].

Interviewee 4 suggested that the Ministry of Defence does at least base its procurements on clearly identified requirements for the small procurements under the category of ‘Urgent Needs’. However, with regard to the multi-million-dollar defence procurements managed by the SSB, he said that these are opportunistic and unplanned purchases [1]. All interviewees unanimously suggested that, because the state’s procurement institution is currently under the full control of the presidential palace, it is impossible for outsiders to know what is going on within the procurement cycle, who decides what, at what cost and how [1,2,3,4,5,6].

There is a Defence Policy, however, there is no evidence to support whether procurement of defence items are aligned with the defence strategy [1]. According to the PPDA ministry of defence and veterans affairs procurement audit report f/y 2016/2017[1] audit observed that the ministry approved a number of procurements which were not on the procurement plan. It was noted that the Contracts Committee approved eighteen (18) procurements worth UGX 10,181,512,912 outside the procurement plan. Accordingly, this leads to budget overruns and failure to implement planned priorities. Since then, there are no publically available PPDA procurement reports.

The Parliamentary Committee of Defense & Internal Affairs[1] is the over seer of the ministry of defence and veterans affairs. It scrutnises its plans, and budgets. However, there is no evidence to support whether procurement of defence items are aligned with the defence strategy/white paper. This committee is headed by a member of the ruling party with some members from the oppoision political parties. This makes it a bit hard for the committeee to carry out their over sight role since its composition is majorly from the ruling government. The commitee on Public Accounts (Central Government)[2] also looks at Defence ministry procurement expenditure and highlights the annomalities in the procurement process. Both committees teoretically plan an over sight role. An MP[3] observed that defence are “above scrutiny” , they only report to parliament becuase it is statutory while another MP[4] stated that “defence is bigger than parliament”

When the Ministry of Defence and Veterans Affairs Procurement Audit Report F/Y 2016/17[1] revealed that the ministry’s approved procurements were not on the procurement plan, the Ministry argued that it follows the Procurement Plan. In this particular case, the ministry defended itself by arguing that the procurements cited in the report arose from urgent operational requirements which came up after the initial Procurement Plan had been approved. By operational requirements, the ministry meant combat operations which required urgent procurement whch could follow he normal procurement procedures.

Classified procurement. Planning of State Defence Order is an integral part of the development planning of the military organization of the state, carried out following the Law of Ukraine “On the organization of defence planning” [1]. The Law of Ukraine stipulates that the basic documents on defence planning are: the National Security Strategy of Ukraine and Strategy of military security, the Military Doctrine of Ukraine, the State Program for the Development of the Military Organization of the State, task for the Armed Forces of Ukraine and other military formations, the Strategic Defence Bulletin, the State Program for the Development of Arms and Military Equipment, and the State Program of Reform and Development of the Defence Industrial Complex [2]. It can be inferred that classified procurement of the MoD derives from these basic national defence and security documents.
Non-classified procurement. Most goods, which are procured under non-classified procurement, are clothes, bags, furniture, food, fuel, renovation services, etc. [3]. Strategic defence documents do not place any requirements for such goods and services. However, the CMU adopted the main directions of development of armament and military equipment for a long-term period [4] where it also outlined the development of servicemen outfits.

The Internal Audit Department and Department of Military Policy, Strategic Planning and International Cooperation are entitled to conduct scrutiny to confirm that procurement is in line with national security strategy and other policies, and that work is undertaken to quantify the need for purchases [1, 2, 3]. In regards to external bodies, scrutiny, could in principle be conducted by the VRU Committee on national security and defence [1]. During the internal audit of MoD contracts with state-owned and private contractors, annual procurement plans and their amendments are scrutinised, as well as the conformity of procurements to the budget, state and budget programmes, budget programmes themselves are based on strategic documents [4, 5].

The Ministry of Defence and the AFU base their major purchases on clearly identified requirements – State Defence Orders mostly for classified items and annual procurement plans for non-classified items. Unplanned purchases take place, but in this case, the MoD still amends its planning documents [1].

According to sources, there is a secret defence strategy that has been developed and periodically reviewed by a specialized team from UAE and foreign contractors and experts. However, general and strategic acquisition is not formally derived from the strategy. The strategy is a formalized aspect developed by foreign experts to match the development of the UAE army and the state institutions (1), (2), (3).

It has been established throughout this assessment that the defence sector in the UAE is not subject to any form of oversight. Federal Resolution No. 43 of 2016 on the government’s procurement processes explicitly excludes the defence sector from its mandate and highlights that the defence sector has its own procurement regulations (1), (2). Evidence showed that defence procurement is partially handled by the private limited liability company Tawazun, which runs the Tawazun Economic Council, which in turn manages defence procurement. Tawazun discloses no information about procurement oversight mechanisms and does not provide a procurement procedure on its websites (3). Therefore, and in addition to the fact that no oversight body is mandated to scrutinise defence expenditure in general, it is safe to assume that there is no scrutiny of actual purchases within the defence sector (4).

As has been established above, the UAE does not seem to have a national security and defence strategy, or its strategy is kept secret (1), (2), (3). This sub-indicator has been marked as Not Applicable, as assessing purchases vis-a-vis a national strategy is irrelevant in this context.

Procurement requirements are derived from the Defence Equipment Plan, an annually published defence and security strategy for a 10 year period. The plan is broken down into different sections pertaining to strategic context, affordability and financial risk, management, sector analysis and project overviews. [1] Shifts in overall priorities and strategy are also published, as exemplified by the Defence Integrated Review Command Paper and the Defence and Security Industrial Strategy [2, 3].

Alongside the annual publication of the Defence Equipment Plan, the NAO publishes a report that examines the strategy put forward by the MoD, scrutinising the affordability of the plan, the department’s approach to producing the plan and its approach to the affordability [1]. On an internal level, the Investment Approvals Committee (IAC) also conducts scrutiny of investment proposals to ensure they align with strategic needs and priorities and do not deviate from planning documents.

The majority of purchases are based on clearly identified and quantified requirements, which are outlined in the Defence Equipment Plan [1]. However, the NAO has repeatedly flagged the unaffordability of the Defence Equipment Plan: ‘[f]or the fourth successive year, the Equipment Plan remains unaffordable. However, the Department has still not established a reliable basis to assess the affordability of equipment projects, and its estimate of the funding shortfall in the 2020–2030 Plan is likely to understate the growing financial pressures that it faces. The Plan does not include the full costs of the capabilities that the Department is developing, it continues to make over-optimistic or inconsistent adjustments to reduce cost forecasts and is likely to have underestimated the risks across long-term equipment projects. In addition, the Department has not resolved weaknesses in its quality assurance of the Plan’s affordability assessment. While the Department has made some improvements to its approach and the presentation of the Plan over the years, it has not fully addressed the inconsistencies which undermine the reliability and comparability of its assessment” [2, 3]. Neverthless, issues with the affordability of the plan are not related to unjustified or strategically irrelevant purchases but to more general planning and costing issues.

The Joint Capabilities Integration and Development System (JCIDS) is the process by which the DoD identifies, assesses and prioritises the capabilities required by the military to fulfil its mission; it is referred to as the ‘requirements generation process’ [1]. The JCIDS is used to identify the capabilities needed to meet the strategic direction and priorities set out in strategy documents such as the National Security Strategy, the National Military Strategy, etc. The first step in this process is to conduct a ‘Capabilties Based Assessment’ (CBA), which analyses the military’s needs and capability gaps and recommends materiel ways to address the gaps. The Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Instruction (CJCSI) 5123.01H declares the Joint Requirements Oversight Council (JROC) as the body responsible for implementing the JCIDS [2]. The instruction notes that the JCIDS capabilities process is influenced by both strategic guidance and threats/conditions (the Joint Operating Environment). It is not clear whether there is a document that outlines the clear flow from strategy to procurement.

The Joint Requirements Oversight Council (JROC) oversees all joint capability documents internally. As with most functions of the DoD, they are occasionally audited by the DoD IG. A report published in September 2017, which assesses whether the JROC adequately validated procurement quantities for Major Defense Acquisition Programs (MDAPs), states that no evidence existed to prove that JROC undertook actual consideration of procurement quantity [1]. With regard to scrutiny conducted to ensure that the capability requirements generated by the JCIDS process or through the Adaptive Acquisition Framework, as outlined in Q58, meet the needs outlined in strategic documents, it is not clear whether there is a specific body mandated for this purpose. There is no evidence of justifying purchases to illustrate their strategic alignment.

Congress reviews procurements as they are included in the budget and has the power to not fulfil a budgetary request for an acquisition programme. Although there is evidence of Congress cancelling acquistion programmes, as shown in 59B, there have been more frequent instances of Congress adding weapons systems beyond those requested by the DoD into the budget. For example, in the FY 2021 budget, Congress included an additional 12 F-35 aircraft to the budget beyond what was requested by the DoD [2]. Also in the FY 2021 budget, Congress added an extra $1.1 billion in procurement programmes to the OCO account beyond what was requested by the DoD [3]. Finally, in the FY 2021 and FY 2020 budgets, Congress expanded the F-model Chinook programme, against the requests and wishes of the Army [4]. The reasons for these changes to procurements are not made clear and there is no reference to the changes being made in order to abide more closely by the strategy. Instead, there is frequent criticism by civil society, based on congressional actions and the budget requests, that acquisitions are based on contractor influence and not capability needs. For example, a 2020 POGO article states: ‘The weapons the Pentagon buys are too often needlessly complex and thus unnecessarily expensive’ [5]. A report by the Center for International Policy also states, with reference to the interests of members of Congress, executive agencies, the defence industry and their lobbyists: ‘As all these competing interests mold the Pentagon budget, connections between strategic priorities and budget choices often become obscured, if not outright eliminated’ [6].

There is not enough information to score this indicator, as the strategic documents are not made public. As outlined in 63B, there is widespread criticism that the defence budget is inflated as a result of contractor influence and does not address the right risks [1]. There is also a suggestion that the Pentagon continues to spend money on programmes it does not need (see for example the F-35 Joint Fighter) [2]. Finally, there are criticisms that the budget is not aligned with the strategic risks facing the country, and that there it is unclear what the military wants to achieve [3,4].

The Ministry of the People’s Power for Defence (MPPD) has made strategic guidelines public, in line with the Patria Plan for the development of the nation. However, it is not possible to assess whether requirements for procurement and contracting in the defence sector are based on the established strategy, since the strategy includes no specific goals or actions. Information on procurement planning is not published, nor is information on the implementation of requirements and processes.

Although the Patria Plan and the Second Strategic Socialist Plan of the Defence Sector (2015–2019) set out objectives and strategies for the sector, there are no clear goals with precise actions regarding requirements for contracting and procurement [1, 2]. In addition, information on procurement procedures within the defence sector is not published. The last Management Report submitted by the MPPD to the National Assembly (AN) did not detail completed procurements in a way that would make it possible to assess whether they were in like with the outlined strategy [3].

One of the key examples demonstrating the difficulty of carrying out this assessment involves the acquisition of weapons and military equipment, included within the objective of “strengthening national defensive power to protect national independence and sovereignty” [1]. The objective explicitly seeks to “increase the level of operation of the FANB [National Bolivarian Armed Forces] through equipment, joint purchases, and maintenance platforms” [2]; however, no concrete goals have been set to pursue this objective. In terms of actual acquisitions of armaments and equipment, unofficial information [4, 5, 6] indicates that arms purchases have declined, but it is not possible to determine whether purchases made in recent years are in line with the outlined strategy.

By law, defence sector acquisitions should be internally supervised by Office of the Comptroller General of the National Bolivarian Armed Forces (CONGEFANB) and by the Office of the Comptroller General of the Republic (CGR) and the National Assembly (AN) in terms of external controls. However, a Supreme Court (TSJ) judicial decision of has limited this to only the internal control of the CONGEFANB [1], and the AN has been divested of its oversight function since a TSJ court order voided its legislative functions [2].

An exhaustive search for evidence about the oversight carried out by the CONGEFANB only resulted in information on technical visits and training [3, 4, 5], finding no evidence of the fiscal controls that this body should be carrying out with regard to defence sector acquisitions.

Accountability reports have not been submitted to the AN since 2016, hindering debate and official scrutiny of the acquisitions of the different sectors [2]. Likewise, Venezuelan civil organisations have condemned the government’s blocking of of access to information on the acquisition of weapons [6].

Given that the defence sector’s budget and procurement planning have not been published in recent years, nor have management reports been submitted for the evaluation of purchases in each fiscal year [1], it is not possible to determine whether the purchases made are justified by the security strategy and whether they follow the requirements established by law.

Unofficial information about purchases made by the defence sector, especially in the field of armaments and military equipment, indicate inconsistencies with the published strategy paper [2]; while the aim is to strengthen military units, no significant arms purchases have been made in recent years [3]. The lastest budget published by the defence sector, for fiscal year 2016 [4], did not provide details on planned purchases and predetermined allocations for that year. However, according to the database of the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI), Venezuela did purchase weapons in that year [5, 6]. Purchases in the defence sector do not follow procedures established by law and are not justified by the defence sector administration.

It is impossible to assess whether procurement requirements derive from a national defence and security strategy since the strategy is not publicly available and there are no specific details about procurements that are shared externally. In terms of procedure, the Procurement Directorate in the Zimbabwean military consults other units or branches to determine their needs before starting procurement. Senior officers responsible for strategy are also consulted on procurement issues [1, 2].

There is limited scrutiny of defence purchases by independent bodies such as the Office of the Auditor General Zimbabwe (OAG). The Auditor General has the responsibility and powers under the Audit Office Act to summon documents and scrutinise procurement done in any public department or Ministry. The Audit Office Act states that the OAG does this on behalf of the Parliament, which has overall oversight functions. The primary powers of the OAG are enumerated in Section 106 of the Constitution [1, 2, 3]. However, in practice, the OAG does not have direct access to specific details of most military purchases since the expenditures are given, in total sums, without specifying details of the purchases [4]. As such, the OAG is not able to perform sufficient scrutiny to audit purchases under this strategy.

It is impossible to know if purchases are based on strategy or not since the strategy is not publicly available, and information on procurement is not publicly disclosed. This indicator is not assigned a score and is marked “Not Enough Information.”

Country Sort by Country 63a. Procurement requirements Sort By Subindicator 63b. Scrutiny Sort By Subindicator 63c. Purchases Sort By Subindicator
Albania 75 / 100 50 / 100 50 / 100
Algeria 0 / 100 0 / 100 0 / 100
Angola 25 / 100 0 / 100 50 / 100
Argentina 0 / 100 0 / 100 NEI
Armenia 0 / 100 0 / 100 50 / 100
Australia 100 / 100 50 / 100 100 / 100
Azerbaijan 25 / 100 0 / 100 25 / 100
Bahrain 0 / 100 0 / 100 0 / 100
Bangladesh 50 / 100 50 / 100 50 / 100
Belgium 75 / 100 100 / 100 100 / 100
Bosnia and Herzegovina 0 / 100 50 / 100 50 / 100
Botswana 0 / 100 25 / 100 25 / 100
Brazil 25 / 100 50 / 100 50 / 100
Burkina Faso 25 / 100 0 / 100 0 / 100
Cameroon 0 / 100 0 / 100 0 / 100
Canada 100 / 100 100 / 100 50 / 100
Chile 0 / 100 50 / 100 0 / 100
China 25 / 100 0 / 100 50 / 100
Colombia 0 / 100 25 / 100 NEI
Cote d'Ivoire 0 / 100 0 / 100 0 / 100
Denmark 100 / 100 50 / 100 100 / 100
Egypt 0 / 100 0 / 100 0 / 100
Estonia 100 / 100 100 / 100 75 / 100
Finland 100 / 100 100 / 100 100 / 100
France 75 / 100 75 / 100 75 / 100
Germany 100 / 100 50 / 100 100 / 100
Ghana 0 / 100 50 / 100 0 / 100
Greece 75 / 100 75 / 100 75 / 100
Hungary 25 / 100 0 / 100 25 / 100
India 0 / 100 75 / 100 75 / 100
Indonesia 75 / 100 50 / 100 50 / 100
Iran 0 / 100 0 / 100 0 / 100
Iraq 0 / 100 0 / 100 0 / 100
Israel 25 / 100 25 / 100 50 / 100
Italy 100 / 100 50 / 100 100 / 100
Japan 100 / 100 50 / 100 75 / 100
Jordan 0 / 100 0 / 100 0 / 100
Kenya 25 / 100 25 / 100 NEI
Kosovo 0 / 100 50 / 100 50 / 100
Kuwait 25 / 100 50 / 100 50 / 100
Latvia 75 / 100 50 / 100 100 / 100
Lebanon 25 / 100 100 / 100 100 / 100
Lithuania 25 / 100 100 / 100 75 / 100
Malaysia 25 / 100 50 / 100 50 / 100
Mali 0 / 100 50 / 100 0 / 100
Mexico 50 / 100 50 / 100 50 / 100
Montenegro 25 / 100 25 / 100 50 / 100
Morocco 0 / 100 0 / 100 0 / 100
Myanmar 0 / 100 0 / 100 NEI
Netherlands 75 / 100 100 / 100 100 / 100
New Zealand 100 / 100 100 / 100 100 / 100
Niger 0 / 100 0 / 100 50 / 100
Nigeria 0 / 100 50 / 100 0 / 100
North Macedonia 100 / 100 50 / 100 50 / 100
Norway 75 / 100 50 / 100 100 / 100
Oman 0 / 100 0 / 100 0 / 100
Palestine 25 / 100 50 / 100 50 / 100
Philippines 75 / 100 50 / 100 100 / 100
Poland 25 / 100 0 / 100 0 / 100
Portugal 25 / 100 25 / 100 100 / 100
Qatar 0 / 100 0 / 100 0 / 100
Russia 25 / 100 0 / 100 75 / 100
Saudi Arabia 0 / 100 0 / 100 0 / 100
Serbia 0 / 100 0 / 100 50 / 100
Singapore 100 / 100 100 / 100 100 / 100
South Africa 100 / 100 50 / 100 100 / 100
South Korea 100 / 100 50 / 100 100 / 100
South Sudan 0 / 100 NEI 50 / 100
Spain 25 / 100 25 / 100 50 / 100
Sudan 0 / 100 0 / 100 0 / 100
Sweden 75 / 100 100 / 100 50 / 100
Switzerland 100 / 100 50 / 100 100 / 100
Taiwan 75 / 100 50 / 100 50 / 100
Tanzania 0 / 100 0 / 100 25 / 100
Thailand 25 / 100 0 / 100 0 / 100
Tunisia 0 / 100 50 / 100 50 / 100
Turkey 0 / 100 25 / 100 0 / 100
Uganda 0 / 100 25 / 100 50 / 100
Ukraine 75 / 100 50 / 100 50 / 100
United Arab Emirates 25 / 100 0 / 100 0 / 100
United Kingdom 100 / 100 100 / 100 75 / 100
United States 75 / 100 25 / 100 NEI
Venezuela 0 / 100 0 / 100 0 / 100
Zimbabwe 0 / 100 25 / 100 NEI

With thanks for support from the UK Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) and the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs who have contributed to the Government Defence Integrity Index.

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