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Is there a legislative committee (or other appropriate body) responsible for defence budget scrutiny and analysis in an effective way?

13a. Formal rights


SCORE: 100/100

Assessor Explanation

Assessor Sources

13b. Influence on decision-making


SCORE: 75/100

Assessor Explanation

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According to the Rules of Procedure of the Parliament, the parliament and the permanent committees have all the powers to scrutinise the budget of the security institutions. There are no provisions that limit the permanent committees to invite experts. The CNS has the competence to discuss the defence and security budget before it is sent to the plenary for voting.

The defence and security budget is discussed in the CNS in meetings where traditionally the minister of defence and high military officials are invited to discuss the proposed budget with the committee members. As a rule, the director or deputy director of SHISH is invited to present the intelligence budget.
Typically the MoD officials and SHISH present to the CNS the advantages of the proposed budget or particular program and depending on the negotiation with the Ministry of Finances they may demand the CNS support for approving increases in the budget.
Over the last years, the focus of the debate on defence budget has been on meeting the 2% of the GDP budget for the MOD as required by NATO and on the modernisation of the military hardware [1, 2, 3], so politically there has been the tendency to support the MoD demands.
Similarly, the SHISH has over the last years demanded more funds to step up its capacities to face terrorism and organised crime threats. In the discussion of the 2018 budget, SHISH demanded the CNS make an increase of 30-50% of the budget (in absolute terms the SHISH budget is relatively small, around 12 million Euros), a request that was approved by the CNS and endorsed by the Committee on Economy and Finance [4].
However, beyond the political discourse, it is difficult to estimate the grounds on which the CNS endorses or rejects the demands presented by the defence and security institutions due to the lack of financial expertise and the highly politicized nature of the debates [5, 6].
Moreover, the CNS discusses on the aggregated budget and details on specific budget lines may only be brought out by the defence and security officials during the discussions. Additionally, the CNS doesn’t engage in oversight of the spending of the defence and security institutions during the year [7].
The SSAI presents the annual report on spending in September but its findings have rarely, if not at all, been used in the discussions of the upcoming budget [1, 2, 3].

No information could be found on whether the defence commission has the formal right to scrutinize the decision-making process on the defence budget. According to internal regulations of the APN and the Council of the Nation, Art. 22 only states that “the defence commission is responsible for matters relating to national defence” (1).

Generally, the parliament can introduce amendments to budget proposals from the executive. With regards to the state budget of 2018, the APN has introduced some amendments to the proposal of the Council of Ministers, yet they did not concern the defence budget (2). Given that the figure of the defence budget adopted by the Council of Ministers is the same as the final figure of the defence budget in the finance law (3) (4), the impact of the legislature in general and the Defense Committee specifically (even if it reviewed the budget), can be considered low.

In light of the fact that no information could be found on whether the Defence Commission has the formal right to influence the decision-making process concerning the defence budget, the sub-indicator has been marked Not Applicable. Internal regulations of the APN and the Council of the Nation, do not provide any information about its powers (1). Amendments introduced by the APN did not concern the defence budget (2), and its impact can be considered low (see answer the question 13A).

The 2nd Parliamentary Commission on Defence, security and veterans, under the regulations in force, has a formal mandate to conduct scrutiny on the “main activities” of the defence and security sector. However, the power of Parliament to conduct effective scrutiny on government policy and the state budget is restricted under the 2010 constitution and its interpretation by the Constitutional Court (1), (2).

The 2nd Parliamentary Commission is an advisory working group that is dominated by the ruling party and lacks independence and power to conduct effective scrutiny (1), (2).

Although there are defence commissions in both houses of Congress, they lack real powers to scrutinise the defence budget and, although it has the technical support of the Office of internal budget, it is not the norm to have experts appear. Instead, in terms of scrutiny and budget analysis, the commission involved in this matter is the Committee on Budget and Finance (CPyH). The draft budget of the national administration is prepared by the Ministry of Finance which has previously collected the different preliminary draft jurisdictions, including Defence and Security. Then, it rises to the Chamber of Deputies of the Nation, where it is assigned to the Committee on Budget and Finance (CPyH) to be analysed. This is the Commission with the power to review the entire budget. The CPyH is made up of 45 legislators and chaired by the majority party. The commission quotes officials from the Executive Branch, sends a list of consultations to the Cabinet Office, and debates and analyses the project. [1] [2] Once approved, it passes to the Senate which debates it and before 1 January, approves it. Uña points out that “the budget cycle in Argentina – in its different stages of formulation, approval, execution, and control – is characterised by the existence of processes that work in parallel: the formal process established by the regulatory framework and the process real, influenced, and determined by the informal rules maintained by the parties.” [3] [4]

This indicator has been scored Not Applicable.The Defence Committee does not have any powers or influence over decision-making and budget. These tasks are conducted by the Committe on Budget and Finance and the Executive Branch legislates on matters related to budget. [1] [2] [3] [4]

There is a rather well-resourced and established Standing Committee at the National Assembly that deals with the defence and security-related issues, including budget discussions [1]. Chapter 5 of the Rule of Procedure of the National Assembly is dedicated to the standing committees of the parliament. Articles 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15 refer to the activities, the scope, the rights and responsibilities of the committees [2].

The Committee exercises parliamentary oversight, has the right to make inquiries to state and local self-government bodies and officials (and the latter has to respond in a written form within three weeks), may convene parliamentary hearings, may establish subcommittees and working groups. [2]

According to the RA Law “On the RA Budgetary System” and “the Rules of Procedure of the National Assembly” the materials on items of expenditure containing state and official secrets of the draft state budget are discussed at a joint closed session of the competent standing committees of the National Assembly, which may be attended by MPs, the Chairman of the Audit Chamber and persons authorized by the Government. During the budget discussion, the RA NA Standing Committee on Defense and Security discusses the budgetary allocations constituting state and official secrets with the RA NA Standing Committee on Financial-Credit and Budgetary Affairs. The representative of the Standing Committee on Defense and Security then presents the Committee’s conclusion on the legality and justification of the expenditures for the project constituting state and official secrets. [3]

The Standing Committee on Defence, National Security and Internal Affairs has previously had the right to come up with suggestions and revisions on the defence budgets. The changes in the Rules of Procedure of the parliament that entered into force in 2016 provide that only Members of Parliament and Fractions have the right to make such suggestions and revisions (Article 89) [1]. At the same time, based on the results of preliminary examination of the draft budget, the committee may submit a conclusion to the National Assembly (Article 45 of the Working procedure).

The Joint Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade (JSCFADT) and Parliamentary Committees on Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade (PCFADT) have the right to scrutinise defence budget outlays and the formal authority to carry this scrutiny out. The Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Legislation Committee (one of the two committees that make up PCFADT) have the authority over the defence portfolio during the Senate Estimates process [1], which has three iterations each year – including one during the formal debate over the Appropriation Bills – where senior defence officials are called to answer questions about proposed and previous expenditure [2]. As discussed in Q2A, the JSCFADT and PCFADT have the authority to compel witnesses to appear and documents to be made available, though witnesses can and often do decline to answer politically difficult questions by claiming classified information is at risk. Additionally, JSCFADT is given the authority to review the Defence Annual Report in its Resolution of Appointment [3], which it usually does. The Review of the Annual Report [4] is in large part an investigation of the preceding financial year’s budget outlays.

Because of the way the budget process is structured in Australia, by the time Budget night arrives and Parliament can scrutinise specific proposals, the final budget outlays have already been de facto decided. Budget night includes the first reading of the Appropriation Bills. These have been decided over several months, with primary inputs coming from Senior Ministers making up the Expenditure Review Committee (ERC), who set policies that agencies propose budgets to reflect. These proposed budgets are finalised again by the ERC, which are then put forward by the Government on Budget night [1, 2, 3]. Constitutionally, the Senate lacks the power to amend “proposed laws appropriating revenue…” [4], which has been interpreted to mean that the Senate cannot amend Appropriation Bill No. 1 and No. 3, and has very limited power to amend Appropriation Bill No. 2 and No. 4. In practice, it is unclear if the Senate ever amends appropriation legislation. While Members of the House of Representatives has more scope to introduce amendments, because of complex restrictions and the implications of certain types of amendments – if the opposition manages to pass a “reasoned amendment” or passes certain fiscal amendments this can be considered a vote of no confidence in government – successful amendments are rare [5]. Because all of the defence-related parliamentary committees are either Senate or Joint committees, this means that the committees themselves essentially lack the authority to amend budgets, and private (non-Minister) Members are seriously limited in their ability to do so. Additionally, the Senate Estimates process, while sometimes useful for gleaning useful information that the government may consider politically embarrassing, is generally considered a political exercise rather than a seriously useful oversight mechanism [6].

There is a Committee for Defence, Security and Anti-Corruption in Azerbaijani Parliament with twelve members (1). The committee does not have the power to scrutinise the defence budget (2). So far, the defence budget has not been analysed by the committee. Most members of the committee are not experts, and therefore have no interests or opportunities to investigate what happened in the field of defence and security. Deputies are unable to obtain detailed defence budget information in many cases and there is not enough time to discuss the details of military budget due to the late budget draft. There is no criticism of the budget project due to the lack of real opposition parties in parliament (3). At the same time, the Chamber of Accounts gives an opinion on the overall budget of Azerbaijan and provides a general opinion on defence budget (4), which analyses the defence budget in detail, how much is spent, and other information.

The Committee for Defence, Security and Anti-Corruption in Azerbaijani Parliament has no impact on defence budget decision-making. According to the website of the Parliament (1), the Committee on Defence, Security and Anti-Corruption issues draft laws on the following issues or gives opinions on draft laws: the state of emergency and the military situation; defence; military service; the status of military servicemen and other issues; basics of state security, methods and means of its provision; state border regime. The committee gives an opinion to the draft decisions on the approval of the military doctrine of the Republic of Azerbaijan on the presentations of the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan, the consent to the involvement of the Armed Forces of the Republic of Azerbaijan, the declaration of war and the conclusion of peace on the request of the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan. According to experts, the proposals on forming and analyzing defence spending are typically sent from the president’s administration to the parliament, and there is no evidence that committee members have made any suggestions in this regard (2).

According to interviewees and based on the information in 2A and 2B, there is a committee, but it lacks the formal right to scrutinize the defence budget [1, 2]. The committee does not discuss any of the defence issues as per the reports published on its website [3]. The website of the committee indicates that they have no scrutiny role over the defence budget [4].

This indicator has been marked ‘Not Applicable’, as there is no such committee with effective budget scrutiny (see Q13A) [1, 2].

Although Bangladesh has a Parliamentary Standing Committee on Ministry of Defence, the terms of reference for this committee are not publicly available. There are no official or media reports indicating that it has formally scrutinised or analysed the defence budget [1,2].

The Parliamentary Standing Committee on Ministry of Defence has no influence on the decision-making for defence expenditure [1].

The Chamber of Representatives has a National Defence Commission invested with scrutinizing defence budget under the Senate [1]. They are responsible for scrutiny and amendments to defence law projects. Projects are subjected to vote, and a “rapporteur” keeps a written record. In general they are public.

The main task of the commissions is the examination and discussion of draft laws, decrees and ordinances and proposals for laws, decrees and ordinances. Before being possibly approved in plenary session, these proposals and drafts are examined in committees. During this examination, the texts may be amended. The committees may have recourse to hearings. Their work on a text is concluded by voting, first article by article, then on the proposed text as a whole, and by drafting a report. The report and any text adopted by the committee are forwarded to the plenary assembly, which is then responsible for examining the text and voting on it.

In the Chamber of Representatives and in the Parliaments of the Regions and Communities, the committees also participate in political control: they hear questions and answers to questions put by parliamentarians. Composed of a limited number of parliamentarians appointed in proportion to the different political groups, the committees are the main wheels of legislative activity.

There are standing committees (e.g. in the case of the House of Representatives, Justice Committee, Social Affairs Committee, External Relations and Defence Committee, etc.) and temporary committees created to meet a specific objective. The main task of the committees is the examination and discussion of draft laws, decrees and ordinances and bills. Before being possibly approved in plenary session, these proposals and drafts are examined in committees. During this examination, the texts may be amended.

The committees may have recourse to hearings. Their work on a text is concluded by voting, first article by article, then on the proposed text as a whole, and by drafting a report. The report and any text adopted by the committee are forwarded to the plenary assembly, which is then responsible for examining the text and voting on it.

Besides the Defence Committee, there is the Special Parliamentary Committee on Military Acquisitions [2]. The minister notifies this committee of every acquisition of more than 1,5 million euros. The committee assembles behind closed doors and MPs have criticized the limited amount of information they have received. The current government is planning to improve information to parliament on new acquisitions.

The approval of the budget happens once a year [1]. After political debate and the approval of the numbers by the Council of Ministers, the budget proposal are handed over to the Chamber of Representatives. The budget proposal is then discussed twice: first in the Commission of Budget and Finances, then in the General Assembly [2].

All members of parliament are allowed to introduce amendments to the annual Budget law, including the members of the Commission of Defence. Previous amendments are available for consultation in the archives of the Chamber of Representatives [3].

The Joint Committee on Defence and Security of Bosnia and Herzegovina (JC) has no formal power to make an impact on defence budget decision making. The competences of the Joint Committee on Defence and Security of Bosnia and Herzegovina of the Parliamentary Assembly of Bosnia and Herzegovina related to the scrutiny of the defence budget and expenditures (including its right to require witness):
1. Considers reports on the defence budget execution as well as reports on the auditing of institutions in the domain of BiH defence and security policy;
2. Establishing facts and taking statements from elected or appointed officials, counsellors, civil servants, employees, police officers, military or civilian persons serving in the Armed Forces of Bosnia and Herzegovina (AFBiH) in cases of detected irregularities or irregularities in the work of supervised institutions [1, 2].

The parliamentary committees have the right to hold public or closed hearings, call in and hear witnesses (and demand that they answer all questions and share even facts and information that may be confidential), raise the issue of liability for non-attendance of witnesses, demand for reports from any elected or appointed official and/or institution, demand help of the auditor and ask for help from independent experts outside of state institutions [2].

The Joint Committee on Defence and Security of Bosnia and Herzegovina has no formal power to make an impact on defence budget decision making. In accordance with Article 47 paragraph 1 subparagraph (f) of the Rules of Procedures of the Parliamentary Assembly of Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Committee on Finance and Budget of the House of Representatives of the Parliamentary Assembly is entrusted with the power to consider regulations in the field of finances and budget [1].
Pursuant to Article IV of the BiH Constitution, the Parliamentary Assembly is responsible for deciding upon the sources and amounts of revenues for the operations of the institutions of Bosnia and Herzegovina and international obligations of Bosnia and Herzegovina. The budget is a document of the BiH Parliamentary Assembly which lays down a plan of financial activities of budget users, including MoD and AFBiH, which includes projected revenues and planned expenditures for the period of one fiscal year. The Law on Budget of BiH Institutions and International Obligations of BiH contains a budget drawn up following the provisions of the Law on Financing of BiH Institutions and International Obligations. The BiH Council of Ministers (CoM) is obliged to submit to the BiH Presidency a Draft Law on the Budget of BiH Institutions and International Obligations of BiH for the next year no later than 15 October of the current year. The BiH Presidency is obliged to submit to the BiH Parliamentary Assembly a Proposed Law on the Budget of BiH Institutions and International Obligations of BiH for the next year by 1 November of the current year. The BiH Parliamentary Assembly considers the Proposed Law on the Budget of BiH Institutions and International Obligations of BiH submitted by the Presidency of Bosnia and Herzegovina, and following relevant legal provisions, adopts the Budget Law by 31 December of the current year. At all stages of the adoption of the budget, the competent institutions (BiH Council of Ministers, BiH Presidency and BiH Parliamentary Assembly) may propose amendments to the draft law or the proposed law. By way of example, in 2013 in the final stage of budget approval, the BiH Parliamentary Assembly approved a BAM 3.5 million budget increase for MoD over the initially set financial ceiling for the preparation of financial budget request, with the proviso that the amount was secured from within the overall approved financial framework, through reduction of the budget framework in other institutions. So, in addition to a legislative role, the Parliamentary Assembly has a financial role, since the scope of its remit also includes deciding on the sources and amounts of revenues for the operations of the BiH institutions and international obligations of BiH as well as approving the budget for the BiH institutions. In direct connection with Parliamentary Assembly’s financial role is its supervisory role, as reflected in the obligation of the executive to report to the Parliamentary Assembly on-budget implementation (on a periodic and annual basis), as well in Parliamentary Assembly’s discretion to accept or reject the reports. Accordingly, as the institution that passes the Budget Law, the Parliamentary Assembly has the authority to revise it during the year as necessary, including the budget of the MoD. Applicable regulations also regulate the possibility of restructuring the budget by budget positions within the approved funds, which allows for better budget implementation in situations when during implementation either there have been changes in input parameters relative to the plan or it is not possible to implement planned activities. Seeing that the level of funding is not sufficient for its prescribed mission and commitments, MoD has in the past regularly resorted to budget restructuring to better utilise available funding. Per the needs of equipping and modernising AFBiH, CoM has approved the implementation of multi-year capital projects for the procurement of specialised motor vehicles for AFBiH. Since the resources available in the budget of institutions were not sufficient to implement these projects in the envisaged period, CoM has approved that the portion of funds from the MoD’s budget that could not be spent according to plan in the fiscal year for which it was approved be reapportioned to these projects through budget restructuring to improve the operability of AFBiH and continue efforts to build defence capabilities, following the integration processes [2].

There is the Foreign Affairs, Defence, Justice and Security Portfolio Committee which is appointed at the beginning of each Parliament for the Life of the Parliament and is dissolved upon the dissolution of the Assembly [1]. The Parliamentary Portfolio Committees exercise oversight and scrutiny over the Defence Budget and their sectorial mandates and report their findings to the Assembly [2]. The same Portfolio Committee also reviews Government Policies and Legislation on Defence [2]. The Foreign Affairs, Defence, Justice and Security Portfolio Committee, has the power to summon witnesses to explain the budget. There is no evidence that the committees have the formal power to summon witnesses.

The Portfolio Committee on Foreign Affairs, Defence, Justice, Security are appointed at the beginning of each Parliament stage during the life of the Parliament and shall stand dissolved upon the dissolution of the Assembly. This Committee exercises oversight and scrutiny over inter alia – the Department of Defence. There are no reports of influence on decision making [1,2]. In other words, there is no evidence to suggest that the Committee has any influence on the defence budget.

There are three defence committees with extensive formal rights of scrutiny of the defence budget: the budget committee (Comissão Mista de Orçamento) and the two defence-related committees from the lower and upper legislative houses. The committees have the power to scrutinise any aspect of budget and expenditures, and can also require expert witnesses to appear in front of it, as mentioned in question 2A [1, 2, 3].

The Legislative Commissions on defence have the power to discuss defence budgets and to amend the country’s Budgetary Plan [1]. This year, the Senate’s Commission approved the budget for a Program of Reequipment of the Brazilian Air Force, and also another amendment that reserves R$200.000 for the Navy’s equipment acquisition [2]. There is a general lack of interest from legislators on defence subjects, which considerably limits their capacity to aggregate information for the military reports and their technical advice.

The scrutiny of the national budget in general and the defence budget, in particular, falls under the purview of the Finance and Budget Committee (COMFIB) (1). Every year, the COMFIB receives the budget of all government institutions. It then reviews each budget, makes edits and recommendations, and propose solutions. When necessary, the COMFIB requests information and technical proposals from other committees (2). For example, the COMFID often requests an explanation from the Defence and Security Committee (CODES), asking for assistance in analyzing the defence budget (3). Therefore, the parliamentary committee, which scrutinizes the defence budget is primarily the COMFIB, and other committees are subsidiaries if their help is requested.

The Finance and Budget Committee (COMFIB) is responsible for conducting scrutiny on the defence budget (1). However, the COMFIB lacks sufficient power to influence decision-making regarding the defence sector budget (2). The incapacity of the COMFIB to influence decisions when conducting scrutiny over the defence budget also stems from a failure of the separation of powers, and from a legislative system that still heavily depends on the government. BTI (3), has already pointed this out by claiming that the “institutional separation of powers between the executive, legislative and judicial branches is guaranteed in the constitution, but has been significantly limited in practical terms” (3).

The National Defence and Security Committee is responsible for defence budget scrutiny and analysis. Although a National Defence and Security Committee does exist within the legislature, the Constitution (Article 35) states that the government does not have to provide information/explanations to the legislature regarding national defence/security of the state, in effect limiting any rights of scrutiny possessed by the committee (see 2c above) [1] [2].

In addition, according to the most recent Open Budget Survey (Jan 2018) the “legislative committees do not examine and publish reports on their analyses of the Executive’s Budget Proposal online” making it difficult to determine if any scrutiny takes place [3].

The Open Budget Survey also states that “the legislature provides weak oversight during the planning stage of the budget cycle and no oversight during the implementation stage of the budget cycle” [4].

According to the most recent Open Budget Survey (Jan 2018), the “legislative committees do not examine and publish reports on their analyses of the Executive’s Budget Proposal online” making it difficult to determine their influence on decision making. The Open Budget Survey also noted that the legislature did not offer any amendments to the 2017 budget [1].

The Open Budget Survey also states that “the legislature provides weak oversight during the planning stage of the budget cycle and no oversight during the implementation stage of the budget cycle” [2].

The Standing Committee on Department of National Defence is empowered to review any aspect of the activities of the Department of Department of National Defence (DND) and related agencies (including some intelligence agencies) and to compel expert testimony, including on budgets. [1] The Senate Standing Committee has similar powers, and frequently studies budget issues, as in its recent report. [2] Activities of the Committee reveal frequent examination of budgetary estimates. [3] Committees can and frequently do request expert testimony which directly informs any reports that emerge from such committees – such as the Standing Senate Committe on National Security and Defence. [4]

While the House and to a lesser extent Senate Committees have the power to scrutinise, oversee, and provide feedback on budgetary decisions, they seldom attempt to force changes to defence budgets. This is due in part to a structural incentive for parliamentarians to critique reactively rather than influence proactively, as per Lagasse and Saideman. [1] More broadly, parliament at all levels in Canada tends not to exercise influence or powers over budgets, as compared to operations. Where changes to budgets have occurred, they tend to apply to overall spending and not to specific line items or programs. [2] [3]

The annual budget proposal for the defence sector is debated in Congress in a Special Budget Commission formed by members of the Senate and the Chamber of Deputies. This commission must study and make observations of the annual budget proposal for defence. In addition, the National Congress has two permanent committees of national defence, one in each chamber. According to the Organic Law of the Ministry of National Defence (MDN) [1], these commissions must be informed, in secret sessions, about the strategic planning in defence, the associated financial planning, the state of the executions of resources, and projects of acquisitions and investments. In particular, the Chamber of Deputies Committee of Defense (CDCD) can require additional information, make observations, and create investigative committees to examine the execution of budgets. However, these bodies lack power in the approval and allocation of resources that belong to the Restricted Law on Copper [2].

Although there are formal instances in which Congress and the defence committees can review and analyse the budget proposals for the defence sector, in practice, the effectiveness of these mechanisms has been extremely low. On the one hand, legislators have been excluded from making strategic decisions about acquisitions and investments. A member of Congress highlighted the formidable difficulties that Congress had in reviewing and analysing the defence budget and its allocation, regardless of the political party in office [1]. According to the Political Constitution, Congress cannot modify budget estimations made by the executive, and it can only reduce the resources assigned for specific items. However, in the case of the armed forces, Organic Constitutional Law (18.948) established minimums in the resources allocated to the Armed Forces and their services [2], which has further reduced the influence of Congress in the defence budget [3]. On the other hand, Congress and the defence commissions lack the resources, time and experience necessary for a thorough study and examination of budgetary decisions on defence and military matters [4]. There is no evidence of mid-year expenditure reviews. A proposed bill, currently under discussion, seeks to expand Congress’s capacity to analyse and influence budget decisions and defence acquisitions and replace the Restricted Copper Law [5, 6].

There is no committee in the National People’s Congress responsible for scrutinizing China’s defence policy and budget. [1,2,3] The NPC simply rubber stamps the defence budget without any discussion. [4]

This indicator is scored ‘Not Applicable’ as there is no relevant committee.

Strictly speaking, the Second Commission of Congress has the power to supervise defence matters. However, Article 2 of Law 3 of 1992 states that each Commission will oversee issues based on the “principle of speciality,” meaning that it is possible that budgetary supervision would fall to the Fourth Commission, which has specific competence over the matter. The only express limitation included in the Regulation of Congress is accecssing reserved negotiations or diplomatic affairs. A Commission can request a reserved session to analyse secret information. [1]

The Second Committee does not have the competence, influence, nor responsibility for carrying out possible amendments to the Law of the National Budget or making amendments during the budget year, since this role is carried out by the economic commissions of the Congress of the Republic (Third and Fourth committees). [1] However, during the definition of the National Budget Law for the period 2018-2022, the joint committees of the Senate and House of Representatives analysed the bill proposed by the Ministry of Finance according to the topics that were in place for it, designed a series of analyses, and generated a document with recommendations and proposals to the economic commission for study and consideration. This exercise was carried out in six constitutional commissions of seven, minus in the Second Committee. For Interviewee 1, [2] this exercise was not accepted in this committee given the reserved and specialised nature of the topics that are managed exclusively by the Ministry of Defence. However, the Second Committee, which is responsible for defence issues, has the power to exercise political control over the implementation of the defence budget. This process does not represent fiscal evaluations in terms of budget implementation. This discussion is reflected in the results of the 2017 open budget survey, where Colombia scored 50 out of a total of 100. [3] It is clear that the audit of budgets by the legislature is limited specifically to during the budget implementation process. The results of this index also show that the documents submitted by the legislature are of limited use, specifically the reports delivered during the year, the mid-year, year-end, and audit review. [4] There is no influence of the Second Committee on the defence and security budget.

On January 4, 2016, the attending members of the CSD voted unanimously in favour of adopting the current LPM for the period 2016-2020. The NA website reported about CSD approval on its website, with statements by Minister of Defence Paul Koffi Koffi describing the document as an instrument tasked with deeply reforming the defence sector. He added that the LPM had been designed to professionalize the Army by 2020 via reductions in armed services personnel (1). According to Ivorian media, the CSD approved the reduction of armed services personnel from the current level of 41,515 to 40,000 in 2020. The rationalization of military expenditure will affect the Forces Armées de Côte d’Ivoire (FACI), while the number of police agents in the Gendarmerie Nationale will be increased until it reaches a ratio of one police agent per 1,000 inhabitants (2). Minister Koffi Koffi personally defended the objectives of the LPM 2016-2020 in front of the members of the CSD on January 4, 2016, as confirmed by a radio interview with RFI. During the interview, the minister argued in favour of reducing personnel in front of NA members of the Commission, stating that more money would be allocated to investments than to operational costs in the future (3).

At a brown bag lunch co-organized by the Friedrich Ebert Stiftung on January 28, 2016, at UNOCI headquarters in Abidjan, CSD Secretary Kouassi Kramo discussed the oversight role of the CSD concerning the adoption and implementation of LPM 2016-2020. Kramo stated that it was the first time that the CSD had managed to participate in the drafting stages of this type of legislation and that the CSD had taken part in the debates of the Conseil National de Sécurité (CNS) (4).
“To introduce the process leading to the adoption of this law, the NA member (Kramo) referred to how legislation is voted in the National Assembly. Once the Office of the National Assembly has received the Military Planning Bill and the President of the National Assembly has forwarded it to the Standing Committee (Committee on Security and Defence, CSD), one of the six standing committees, it is submitted for consideration. At this stage, the minister of defence goes before the CSD to present the law on programming. This presentation enables the CSD to formulate amendments, after which the law is passed in a plenary session. Concerning monitoring, the programming law provides for monitoring mechanisms in Articles 19 and 20. To this end, the Government will have to submit an annual report on the implementation of the said law during the voting of the budget law. Moreover, the oversight function devolved to the National Assembly enables it to set up a periodic consultation framework with the minister of defence (institutional exchanges), to invite the minister to parliamentary questions and to lead field visits. He stressed that the vote of the military programming law is a first in Ivory Coast.”

The Commission de Sécurité et de Défense (CSD) reviewed the LPM 2016-2020, voting unanimously in favour of its adoption on January 4, 2016. Though it is vested with basic formal rights to scrutinize the LPM, it appears that CSD attempts to influence the budgetary decisions are nonetheless subject to outside influence.

At a workshop at Yamoussoukro on 24 May 2017, CSD President Sidiki Konate stated that the soldier mutinies in Bouaké and other Ivorian cities in January 2017 had served to intimidate members of the NA in their attempt to implement the LPM 2016-2020, which foresees a reduction in armed services personnel. The workshop (co-organized by UNDP, the Friedrich Ebert Stiftung and USAID) sought to train the members of the CSD to improve their scrutiny of defence-related legislation. The workshop itself indicates that the CSD may have oversight deficits resulting from outside influence (1).

At a brown bag lunch co-organized by the Friedrich Ebert Stiftung on January 28, 2016, at UNOCI headquarters in Abidjan, CSD Secretary Kouassi Kramo discussed the oversight role of the CSD concerning the adoption and implementation of LPM 2016-2020. Kramo stated that it was the first time that the CSD had managed to participate in the drafting of this type of legislation and taken part in the legislative debates of the Conseil National de Sécurité (CNS). Again, the fact that a panel talk was organized to discuss the CSD oversight role suggests an external influence on its decision making (2).

As the Finance Act (and thereby the defence budget) is subject to parliamentary negotiation each year, Parliament and its members scrutinise the defence budget [1, 2]. As the Defence Committe scrutinises issues within the defence policy domain, this can include defence expenditures. However, the Finance Committee addresses funding legislation and general financial policies, including applications for funding from ministers (including the Minister of Defence) and scrutiny of how funding is spend [3]. As such, powers over the defence budget resides primarily with the Finance Committee. Parliamentary committees can invite expert witnesses to appear in front of them, e.g. during committee hearings [4].

As the Finance Act (and thereby the defence budget) is subject to parliamentary negotiation each year, the budget is fixed for one year at a time. However, the incubent government and Parliament may negotiate supplemental defence agreements which can amend the overall size of the defence budget. There is evidence that this practice has resulted in changes to the defence budget (1). However, The Defence Committee may consider the proposal for the annual defence budget as written in the proposal for the forthcoming Finance Act as a part of the parliamentary political treatment and negotiation of it [2]. However, research found no strong evidence that this committee exerts influence on the budget negotiations in relation to the Finance Act [3′. Besides that, the Finance Committee does have influence over the defence spending: As no public expenses must be made without authority in the Finance Act [4], the Finance Commitee has the power to influence the budget as they consider applications from funding, e.g. in relation to defence procurements that are not included in the Finance Act [5, 6]. In the end, though, the overall size of the defence budget is determined in the Defence Agreement which is in turn implemented annually by the Finance Act which is the result of political negotiation. The Public Accounts Committee and the The Danish National Audit Office review the government accounts and expenditure and financial statements of publicly funded enterprises every year [7, 8].

According to our sources, no committee within the Parliament has the power to oversee and scrutinize the budget of the defence sector. Although there is a defence and budget committee, it has no power over the defence budget (1), (2), (3). There are committees for defence and national security, and planning and budgets in the Parliament. Both committees are invited by the NDF to “discuss” with voting powers (4), (5). However, the current president and deputy of the Defence and National Security Committee are former military generals, which undermines the principle of external and independent scrutiny (6).

This sub-indicator has been marked Not Applicable because, according to our sources, the defence committee has no power over the defence budget they do not debate or scrutinize the budget at all. The budget is a summary of one figure which is showed in the general budget, which means not giving any details about the budget details to be discussed (1), (2), (3), (4). It is difficult to determine whether attending the NDC budget discussion by the heads of the budget and defence committees would constitute an exercise of “informal influence”, but it most certainly would not be more than informal especially that the votes are only two (even after including the military head of the defence committee) out of 16.

The National Defence Committee, a standing committee of the Riigikogu, takes part in the preparation of the national budget. The committee holds consultations on the budget with the Ministry of Defence and other involved institutions. [1] The committee has the right to scrutinise any aspect of the budget and invite anyone in front of the committee. [2]
The defence budget is elaborated based on the National Defence Development Plan. In accordance with the National Defence Act, [3] before submission of the development plan in the area to the Government of the Republic for approval, the Prime Minister shall take into consideration the opinion of the National Defence Committee of the Riigikogu. The national defence strategy documents and national defence action plan are prepared under the guidance of the Security Committee which has the right to request the ministries’ preparation of the documents and participation therein.
The National Defence Committee discusses the defence budget together with the Minister of Defence. Another committee of the Riigikogu, the State Budget Control Select Committee, [4] together with the National Audit Office, monitors the Government of the Republic in implementing the state budget. They also make sure that public assets and financial resources are used efficiently, expediently and in strict accordance with the legislation. The committee informs the National Audit Office about problems it identifies. The State Budget Control Select Committee and the National Defence Committee sometimes hold joint sessions and work together. [5] After the second and during the third reading of the state budget draft law, committees have the right to put forward amendments. The committees have the right to introduce experts and other persons to participate in the proceedings on the bill or draft resolution. [6,7]

The National Defence Committee invites experts to appear before the committee. They also make amendments, but not all the members of the committee are experts in defence and therefore not all opinions that are put forward are considered. Based on an interview with a member of the Committee, the Committee reviews the budget more than once, but not regularly. [1] Even though the Committee has the right to strike out expenditures, in general, it is rare for the Committee to change procurement and any other budgetary decisions. [2]

Some amendments have been put forward by the National Defence Committee over the years that have resulted in changes to the budget. For example, the chairman of the committee refused to approve the defence budget unless 10 million euros were added that had been cut without his knowledge. [2]
It should be noted that that the National Defence Committee has an active role mostly before the budget is finalised and approved by parliament. After the budget for the next year has been approved, the National Security Committee is not regularly engaged in mid-year expenditure review.

The Parliament and the Parliamentary Committees approve and also supervise the defence budget (Parliamentary Defence Committee and Parliamentary Intelligence Oversight Committee) as well as the budgets for crisis management (both military and civilian; Parliamentary Defence Committee, Parliamentary Foreign Affairs Committee, and Parliamentary Administration Committee). In addition, the National Audit Office has the right to inspect defence expenses and it also inspects the Final State Accounts and provides a statement of those to the Parliamentery Audit Committee. The Parliamentary Audit Committee provides a report on the Final State Accounts and the statement of the National Audit Office to the Parliament, when the latter discusses the matter. [1] The Parliamentary Audit Committee can accept matters belonging to its sphere of competence for deliberation and has a right to report on them to a plenary session. [2] The Parliamentary Committees have a right to call in expert witnesses and request for further information from the Ministry of Defence and the Defence Forces.

Since there are no off-budget expenses, defence budgets and their amendments need to be accepted by the Parliament, and the report of the respective Committee often becomes the final, Parliament approved version, the work of the Committees evidently influences decision making. The Committees can prevent major acquisitions in advance i.e. recommend to the Parliament that it does not accept the suggested acquisition, whereas minor acquisition is carried out by the procurement units according to the legislation and other regulation and guidance and following the approval and supervisory arrangements within the Defence Forces and the Ministry of Defence. In the administrative branches, budget reviews are carried out in quarters (the appropriations cannot be exceeded) and suggestions for budget amendments can be done throughout the budget year, for which reason no formal mid-year expenditure review takes place. [1] [2] However, a so-called “deviation report”, that is, an interim report is put together annually for the term January 1 – July 31. [2]

The Defence committees of the National Assembly (« Commission Défense ») and of the Senate have extensive formal rights of scrutiny of the Defence budget and expenditures, as stated by the 1958 Constitution. [1] [2]
In a recent example, the Foreign affairs and armed forces Commission of the Senate successfully imposed several amendments to the Military programming law of June 2018 (for the 2019-2025 period) on the budget and personnel management of the French armed forces. [3]

According to article 5bis of the Ordinance of 17 November 1958, the committee is in a position to require expert witnesses, but also ministers, officers of the army, or anybody but the President, to appear in front of it and answer questions. Its power of control is, however, limited by the secrecy of defence label.

In theory, pursuant to Article 5ter of Ordinance 58-1100 of 17 November 1958, [4] the Defence Commission may, like any permanent commission, ask the National Assembly to confer on it the prerogatives attributed to commissions of investigation for a specific mission and for a duration not exceeding six months. The Commission can then request to question any member of the government (or any person of their choice but the President). In fact, the Defence Commission often runs « information missions », but it has never used its constitutional right (article 5ter) to create an « investigative mission » on sensitive issues likely to be classified, such as OPEX, procurements, or French arms exports.

In addition, as mentioned previously, the committee often lacks complete and timely information as there is no such formal requirement – thus limiting its effective role. Most of the members of the current Defence Commission have no expertise in the Defence sector. They are members of Parliament. Most of them are from the Presidential majority of the 2017 election (“La République en Marche” party). They come from civil society and it is their first term of office. But that was the case for all previous Defence Commissions. They are composed according to political criteria: the proportionally to the representation of the various political groups at the Assembly, not according to any expertise in the field of interest of the Commission.

Both the Defence committee of the National Assembly and the Defence committee of the Senate meet on average five to six times a month, to discuss and review expenditures and make recommendations through reports, to influence the next yearly budget. [1] [2] They introduce amendments to the budget and there is evidence that these discussions and amendments have resulted in changes to the budget. In a recent example, the Foreign affairs and armed forces Commission of the Senate successfully imposed several amendments to the Military programming law of June 2018 (for the 2019-2025 period) on the budget and personnel management of the French armed forces. [3]
However, the committees are not always provided with the full extent of available information on operations (broad spectrum of « secret défense ») and not always in a timely fashion. This is consistent with the Constitution of the Fifth Republic, reserving Defence and security decision-making to the executive branch, hence limiting the role of legislative committees to observations and comments.

The Budget Committee has extensive formal rights of scrutiny of the defence budget. The Committee has the power to scrutinise any aspect of the budget and expenditures. It prepares the plenary’s decision on the Budget Act and also oversees the implementation of the budget [1]. It monitors whether the Federal Government is complying with the relevant regulations in its use of the funds available to it. Outside its core role, which is parliamentary consideration of the draft budget, the Budget Committee also has a general right to examine and to be involved in decision-making on laws with significant financial implications in all fields of policy. In such cases, the Committee must decide whether the planned legislation is compatible with the budget situation. If the Committee decides that it is not, and the Bundestag endorses its decision, no further deliberations may take place on the bill. It also has the power to call expert witnesses to appear before it.

Furthermore, the Federal Ministry of the Interior is in charge of preventing corruption in the Federal Administration. To this end, it adopts guidelines for the organisation of the federal administrative bodies and issues a code of conduct for superiors. Citizens and employees can reach out to designated points of contact with corruption-related questions or concerns [2]. There are also anti-corruption representatives who facilitate the reporting and investigation of corruption incidents. They operate at a sub-national or institutional level and serve as a point of contact for staff and heads of public institutions and, in some instances, for citizen complaints. This function is stipulated in the 2004 Federal Government Directive Concerning the Prevention of Corruption in the Federal Administration (Richtlinie der Bundesregierung zur Korruptionsprävention in der Bundesverwaltung) [3]. Several institutions or local administrations have appointed an Ombudsman to facilitate the reporting and investigation of corruption incidents. One example is the role of the Parliamentary Commissioner for the Armed Forces (Wehrbeauftragter des Bundes), which has existed since 1956 and was established under Art 45b of the Basic Law (Grundgesetz) [4].

The Committee has introduced amendments to the budget and there is evidence that in some instances, these have resulted in changes to the budget. The official explanation is as follows: ‘Although the Defence Committee is not assigned any formal responsibility for deliberating on the Budget Act, it nevertheless exerts considerable influence on the budget deliberations by holding intensive consultations on the individual budget (‘Einzelplan’) of the Federal Ministry of Defence, as well the budget of the Defence Commissioner of the German Bundestag and submitting an expert opinion to the Budget Committee. The recommendations it makes are generally taken into account by the Budget Committee of the Federal Ministry of Defence. Procurement projects of particular security and military-political importance, as well as all procurements with a cost volume of at least EUR 25 million, must also be submitted to the Defence Committee as an expert committee for deliberation, regardless of the Budget Act’ [1].

The Committee holds a mid-year expenditure review and can strike out expenditures before they are incurred. ‘In theory, the budget process is quite simple. The Federal Government sets out what it wants to spend money on. The Bundestag examines its proposal, makes changes and takes a decision. Then the Federal Government uses the funds to carry out its work. The Bundestag oversees this process. And the cycle repeats itself every year. In reality, the process is somewhat more complicated – after all, the federal budget involves hundreds of billions of euros and covers every area of policy. But the basic principle stands. Every March, the Federal Cabinet adopts what are known as “benchmark figures”, which set binding spending limits for all the ministries. The estimated revenue and the financial plan for the next five years are also set out. Subsequently, from March to July, the ministries establish the detailed plans for their own budgets, in a hierarchical process, then negotiate them with the Federal Ministry of Finance. In late June or early July, following further intensive negotiations within the government, the Cabinet adopts the government draft of the Budget Act – to which the roughly 3,000 pages of the budget are appended. During the “budget week” in September, the first debate on the government draft takes place in the Bundestag. This is one of the highlights of the parliamentary year. Following this first reading, the focus shifts to the Budget Committee. Each parliamentary group nominates a member to serve as rapporteur for each departmental budget. The rapporteur then goes through the departmental budget with his or her colleagues, holds discussions with federal ministers, state secretaries and civil servants, and proposes changes. The rapporteurs’ proposals then form the basis for the Budget Committee’s consideration of the departmental budget; the Bundestag’s specialised committees also submit expert opinions, which are taken into account. The Committee votes on hundreds of motions for amendments, resulting in a collection of recommendations for a decision that enjoy majority support in the Committee. The recommendations are submitted to the plenary of the Bundestag, where, finally, the Budget Act and the budget receive their second and third readings and are adopted. The Budget Committee’s power to make changes to the draft budget shows how powerful the German Parliament is: in many other countries, the parliament can only accept or reject the government’s draft as a whole, without being able to change the details. The role of the Bundestag’s plenary and the Budget Committee does not end once the budget has been adopted; they also have a say in its execution. “Qualified blocks” are imposed on some budget appropriations, for example, those relating to new programmes. In this case, the Budget Committee only releases the funds if the government submits the required strategies and reports. If there is a funding shortfall in one area, the Federal Ministry of Finance can authorise excess or extrabudgetary expenditure, but the ministry concerned must make equivalent savings elsewhere. If there is an overall shortfall, a supplementary budget must be adopted – with the Bundestag and the Budget Committee again playing a crucial role’ [2].

Nevertheless, in practice, this practical control is often questioned: MPs repeatedly approved budget funds for a misguided project, the ‘Euro Hawk’ procurement. Afterwards, there was a Committee of Inquiry, but it remained largely ineffective. In 2013, during the debate on the final report of the ‘Euro Hawk’ Committee of Inquiry, then-Bundestag President Norbert Lammert (CDU) said that it was in the interest of the whole parliament to provide effective parliamentary oversight for large procurement projects: ‘This would save it having to clarify how things went after the fact’ [3].

Article103 (3,6) of the Consitution of Ghana gives Parliament a broad mandate of oversight, and in particular articles 174,178,179, and 187 also gives parliament the power to oversee the national budget (1).

Deliberations on the defence budget proposal belong to the competences of the Parliamentary Selected Committee on Defence and Interior (PSCDI, 18 members) together with the Parliament Standing Committee on Public Accounts (PSCPA, 25 members). The PSCDI has extensive formal rights to “examine all questions relating to defence and internal affairs” (2) but lacks resources and expertise.

There is no publicly available evidence of the PSCDI exercising its legal capacity to influence or closely scrutinise the defence budget. Records of the PSCDI introducing amendments have not been found. Parliament is tasked to approve or reject the government’s mid-year budget review, which is scheduled in July (1).

The oversight functions of the PSCDI are also limited by the constitution. According to Article 108 of the Constitution, the legislature cannot increase the budget; it can only reduce it (2).

There is a Special Standing Parliamentary Committee on Armaments Programmes and Contracts with formal rights of scrutiny of the defence budget, but it lacks the power to scrutinise classified items [1, 2]. The committee rarely requires expert witnesses to appear in front of it.

The Special Standing Parliamentary Committee on Armaments Programmes and Contracts can review the implementation of armaments programmes and defence equipment contracts [1]. However the committee has no impact on defence budget decision-making [2].

Legally the defence committee has the right to scrutinise of the defence budget. The committee has the power to scrutinise any aspect of budget and expenditures, and the committee is in a position to require expert witnesses to appear in front of it [1].

As described above in question 2, the government’s members of the committee are not executing their powers, while opposition members have no influence and do not have enough votes to impact agendas [1] or decision making. The situation is even worse in the case of approving the annual budget plan for defence. As the debate on the 2019 budget proved the government nominated members approved every line of the budget, while they voted against every single modification proposal of the opposition. One MP requested that a letter be attached claiming members have no insight on how major defence procurement as the helicopter procurement is funded, how the budget covers these costs [2].

The Standing Committee on Defence is responsible for defence budget scrutiny and analysis. It considers the Demands for Grants of the Ministry of Defence (MoD) and makes reports on the same to the Houses. After the general discussion on the budget in the House is over, the Lok Sabha is adjourned for a fixed period. The Committee considers the Demands for Grants of the Ministry of Defence under its jurisdiction during this period and presents/lays reports. The Committee may appoint Sub-Committees and study groups from amongst the members of the Committee to make detailed studies/examinations of the subjects selected by it and scrutinise the actions taken by the government on the Observations/Recommendations contained in the original Reports [1]. The Committee is in a position to call expert witnesses in front of it [2][3][4].

The Standing Committee on Defence carries out in-depth analysis of the Demand for Grants through formal mechanisms and provides written recommendations in reports [1]. There is a sphere of influence but ultimately, as stated by the Lok Sabha, “Demands for Grants are considered by the House in the light of the Reports of the Committee.” [2] As alluded to in Q.2, the government on average accepts over half of the Committee’s recommendations. At times SCoD does not find the government’s response adequate as recently seen regarding the recommendations related to the creation of a non-lapsable capital fund account [3][4].

According to the laws and regulations, the government’s revenue and expenditure budget is discussed together with the DPR RI. The Ministry of Defence prepares a Work and Budget Plan, which is then submitted to the Commission for review and joint discussion. In addition, Commission I is also tasked with holding preliminary talks with its partners, in this case the Ministry of Defence, as well as holding discussions and proposing improvements [1]. In addition to being involved in drafting, Commission I also carries out an oversight function by monitoring the implementation of the State Budget and discussing and following up on the audit results from the Audit Board (BPK) on the management report and financial responsibility of the government in the defence sector. In carrying out these tasks, Commission I holds a Working Meeting with the President, who is represented by the Minister of Defence, a Hearing Meeting with other government officials in the defence sector and a Public Hearing Meeting, to which the Commission can invite experts required for relevant issues [2].

In terms of carrying out budget-related functions, the DPR RI, in this case Commission I, plays a very important role in preparing and supervising the implementation of the State Budget, particularly the defence budget. Commission I, for example, is tasked with holding preliminary talks to discuss the Government Work Plan (RKP) as well as the Work Plans and Budgets of ministries and institutions (RKAKL), including with the Ministry of Defence. During the discussion, members of Commission I can propose improvements to the Draft State Budget and changes to the Ministry of Defence RKA. Commission I is also tasked with discussing and determining budget allocation for the functions and programmes of the ministries and institutions that become its working partners, including the Ministry of Defence [1]. This means that Commission I has enough opportunity to determine the details of the defence budget and its allocation. According to Law No. 17/2003 concerning State Finances, the DPR RI can submit proposals that can change the amount of revenue and expenditure in the State Budget Draft. In addition, the DPR RI, in this case Commission I, is also able to make changes to the current year’s State Budget, including the defence budget. Changes to the current year’s State Budget can be made if there are changes to macroeconomic assumptions, fiscal policy points or other conditions that cause budget shifts. The revised State Budget is proposed by the government after compiling and submitting the State Budget First Semester Realisation Report and the prognosis for the next six months. Changes to the State Budget can result in a decrease or increase in the defence budget [2]. The emergence of new security dynamics and changes in defence policy can trigger changes in the State Budget [3]. During the fiscal year, Commission I can also summon the Minister of Defence, the Chief of the TNI or the latter’s representative at any time to hold work meetings or hearing meetings regarding the implementation of the defence budget.

A committee exists, the National Security and Foreign Policy Committee, but it lacks formal rights to scrutinise the defence budget [1].

This indicator is marked Not Applicable, as the National Security and Foreign Policy Committee lacks formal rights to scrutinise the defence budget [1].

Cabinet members, as Iraq’s Financial Management Law makes clear, prepare the annual federal budget, which the parliament votes on. Before the vote, the cabinet must provide a copy of the draft to the ministry of finance. This, one source (1) historicizes, was a recommendation put forward by the U.S. State Department’s Future of Iraq Project, as a solution to resolve forecasted fiscal problems. “It advised that the MoF should be put in charge of the budget process, and the MoF and Iraqi Central Bank should work together on monetary policy … but it left out a consideration of the parliamentary role in budgeting” (1 p. 95). Equally, articles 9 and 12 of the CPA order 95 “Financial Management Law and Public Debt Law” (2), (3) charged the MoF with full responsibility for budget formulation and execution. The UN has convened various meetings over the years in which CoR members, including committee members that carry out the budget and financial analysis, on the subject of budgetary reform. It is doubtful that a specific legislative committee assumes responsibility for inspecting Iraq’s defence budget. As far as the security and defence committee’s formal rights are concerned, the law makes contributions permissible but unenforceable in absence of executive powers. The exercise of scrutiny over all matters related to the defence budget is reserved by members of Iraq’s parliamentary and security committee, but the final decision and say is the financial committee lawmakers.

As mentioned in 13A, the Committee has no formal powers of scrutiny of defence budget scrutiny and analysis.

The Finance Commitee, the Defence Committee and the State Comptroller have formal rights of scrutiny of the defence budget and expenditures. However, they lack some power to scrutinise any aspect. For instance, the Defence Committee is not in a position to require expert witnesses to appear in front of it (1) (2). On the other hand they can compel government representatives and Ministers to appear before them (3). On the Website of the Israel Ministry of Foreign Affiars is written: “Among the most important laws brought up by the government every year for the approval of the Knesset is the budget law and its annexes. In the past this law used to get through third reading with hardly any changes. Today, not only does the Knesset hold a real debate on the controversial articles in it, but the Finance Committee has decisive influence on the formulation of the budget, so that the budget which emerges from the hands of the legislator is different in many articles than that originally presented by the Minister of Finance.” (4)

The joint committee of the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defence Committee and the Finance Committee can review the defence budget and attempt to influence budgetary decisions through formal mechanisms, but in most of the cases the attempts are limited (1). For instance, in January 2018 the state budget for 2019 was approved by the government, and March, 2018, it received final approval in the Knesset. Earlier in March 2018, “the defence budget underwent a detailed and meticulous review in the joint committee of the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defence Committee and the Finance Committee, to provide Knesset approval for the defence budget, before final ratification of the state budget in the plenary session.” The final meeting of the joint committee was attended by the committee members, the Minister of Defence Minister, the Israel Defence Forces chief of staff, the Head of the Ministry of Defence, and the Head of the Ministry of Finance. According to the Institute for National Security Studies (INSS), this approval process in 2018 occurred very early relative to previous budgets, “apparently in the desire to maintain budgetary stability and avoid the buildup of political pressures typical of the end of the budget year. In view of the considerable gap in times between the time for preparing the defence budget (2017) and its realisation in 2019, it might be necessary to update budget details according to developments.” (2)
Moreover, as per the Budgetary Principles Law (1985), the government only needs prior approval from the FADC for significant budget variations exceeding 20,000,000,000 shekels (3). Any other variations does not need committee approval and requires them to only be notified. Equally, budget increases can be made without approval “when a special securtiy situation so requires” (3), with the law failing to properly define what situation falls into this category.

The analysis of the defence budget is carried out in the wider process of definition of the national annual budgetary law [1]. Therefore, the IV standing committees of the Parliament are updated and informed on the proposition of the government that they can scrutinise, approve and amend [2]. The IV standing committees are the parliamentary body which oversees the government work in matters of Defence. It is composed of both MP’s of majority and minority parties. Experts can be called by the Committees in both formal and informal hearings. They also approve the defence budget proposed by the executive branch and can scrutinise the budget dedicated to specific armament procurement and/or allocation to military operations abroad.

When it comes to the capacity to influence the decision making process, Parliamentary committees can express their opinion on specific aspects related to the subject of their interest [1]. Although opinions expressed by the committee are not mandatory, they could result in change because the commission has the power to modify how the budget is spent. Despite the possibility to strike out expenditures before incurring, this action would result in the activation of contractual clauses, which are, usually, more expensive than the obligation.

The government has to take into account the opinions of the IV Standing Committees according to art 536 of the Code of the Military system as amended by law 244/2012 [2]. Should this not be the case, in order to block the approval of the document, the Committees need to express their disagreement by absolute majority [3]. This holds valid for each expenditure determinations.

The Committees are informed on the mid-year expenditure review that is carried out by the Court of Auditors.

The Security Committee of the House of Representatives and the Foreign Affairs and Defence Committee of the House of Councillors are standing committees in charge of defence affairs. Committees are to conduct detailed and specialised preliminary deliberation of proposals and petitions, including budgets, before they are committed to the full house. [1] These committees therefore have the right to scrutinise the defence budget. Each house of the National Diet also has a permanent legislative Budget Committee, which are responsible for budget scrutiny, and are the only committees that have explicitly stated jurisdiction over budgets. Fifty committee members are assigned for the Budget Committee of the House of the Representatives, and 45 committee members are assigned for the Budget Committee of the House of Councillors. [2] [3] Committees may conduct investigations in relation to government. This is done by hearing explanations from government representatives and persons with a relation to the issues, conducting interpellations, requesting documents, requesting witnesses and experts to appear before a meeting, or sending members on investigative trips. [4] Committees may hold open hearings on important matters of popular concern and for general purposes. Such hearings must be held on the overall budget [5] (see Q3C). A committee may also “through the presiding officer of its House, request the presence of the Prime Minister, a Minister of State, a Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary, a State Minister, a Parliamentary Vice-Minister or a Government special adviser at its meeting.” [6] The Prime Minister and several Cabinet Ministers are present at several Budget Committee meetings, and committee members can question them on any part of policy supported by the government funding. [7] A committee may also request reports and records from the Cabinet or a public agent. The Cabinet can refuse to produce the reports and records if it declares that doing so would be “gravely detrimental to the national interest” (see Q2A). [8] A committee may also request that the Board of Audit carry out an audit upon specified matters. [9] Furthermore, a committee may summon witnesses and voluntary testifiers to appear before it. Witnesses are under strong legal obligation to appear in front of the committee. [10] Voluntary testifiers, i.e. experts, are not obliged to meet, but examination of the proceedings of the meetings indicate that they do meet when summoned. [11]

The Constitution grants the authority to make the budget proposal to the Executive. [1] The budget proposal that the government presents to the Diet tends to be a completed document (see the answer to Q12B). As explained in the answer to Q2D, the budget proposal for FY 2019 was deliberated in the Budget Committee of each house of the Diet. The Security Committee of the House of Representatives received a brief explanation on the defence budget after it had been adopted by the Budget Committee and the Foreign Affairs and Defence Committee scrutinised the defence budget while the budget was being considered by the Budget Committee of the House of Councillors. The Diet seldom amends the budget, and when it does, the changes are marginal. [2] All general account budget proposals, which include the defence budget, for the years covered by this research were passed by the Diet without amendments. [3] [4] [5] [6] [7] [8] Nevertheless, the Budget Committees made use of the powers described in the answer to Q13A when they deliberated the defence budget. Other committees also use their powers when they deal with aspects of the budget. The Budget Committee of the House of Representatives held a hearing on February 26, 2019, and the Budget Committee of the House of Councillors did so on March 12, 2019. Such hearings must be held before the budget is voted on in the Budget Committee. Both hearings featured public speakers who discussed security and defence affairs. They provided useful perspectives, but the proceedings do not indicate that they were used to try to change the content of the defence budget. [9]

Members of the Cabinet were questioned in the Budget Committee on several occasions, and such exchanges often deal with the policy that underlies the budget measures. For example, on February 20, 2019, Prime Minister Abe answered a question by explaining why he thought that the plan described in the recently adopted NDPG FY 2019- to modify two helicopter carriers so that they could carry fighter planes did not violate the constitutional ban on having offensive capabilities. Minister of Defence Iwaya was thereafter asked questions about the cost of the procurement plan described in the MTDP FY 2019 – FY 2023. [10] Committee members may also make use of their right to request documents. Requests of documents from the security and defence sector are not mentioned in the Budget Committee proceedings of either house during the 198th Diet session, January 28 – June 26, 2019. [11] [12] Neither were such requests mentioned in the Budget Committee proceedings of either house, [13] [14] the Security Committee of the House of Representatives [15] or the Foreign Affairs and Defence Committee of the House of Councillors [16] during the 193rd Diet session, January 20 – June 18, 2017. Nevertheless, there are press reports that Diet members in 2017 requested daily logs from the SDF’s reconstruction operations in Iraq 2004-2006, although they do not say which committees they were from. [17] [18] Furthermore, requesting documents is a part of the ordinary business of committees. [19] Within the timeframe of this research, the Committee on Audit of the House of Councillors made a request, authorised under article 105 of the Diet Law, that the Board of Audit carry out an audit upon procurement of defence equipment through FMS. [20] In October 2019, the Board of Audit submitted the report. [21] There were no reports about summoning witnesses [証人] in the proceedings of the Budget Committee of either house during the 198th Diet session, January 28 – June 26, 2019. [22] [23] However, for most of its meetings the Budget Committees summoned several government informants [high-ranking officials] and voluntary testifiers [often former high-ranking officials], who were available to answer questions at the committee meetings. Thus, the Budget Committees, or in some cases other committees that work on aspects of the budget, use their powers to investigate defence affairs. They conduct hearings, question the Prime Minister, Minister of Defence and other Cabinet Ministers, request documents from the government, request audits and request the presence of government informants and voluntary testifiers to answer questions. The scope for the opposition to change the defence budget is not large, as long as the budget proposal has been well prepared and the government is supported by a majority in Diet. Through deliberation, the Budget Committees make sure that budgets are made according to due procedure, and debates in the Budget Committees highlight politically salient issues, but to make significant changes to the budget would require a change of government. The score has been selected on the basis of this information.

In Jordan, there is no committee or entity that scrutinises defence budgets. Whilst this could be included in the mandates of the Integrity and Transparency Committee and the Finance Committee within the Parliament, as well as the Jordanian Audit Bureau, none of these entities can interrogate or scrutinise defence budgets [1,4]. The finance committee has formal rigths to scrutinize and analyse all budgets, but not the defence. Furthermore, the list of institutions and entities audited by the Audit Bureau includes the General Intelligence Directorate and the Public Security Directorate, but not the armed forces [2,3]. The official page of the House of Representatives in Jordan includes several reports presented to the legislature by the Audit Bureau.

This sub-indicator has been marked Not Applicable because there is no committee with formal powers to scrutinise defence budgets [1,2,3]. The finance committee has formal rigths to scrutinize and analyse all budgets, but not the defence [4].

The Defence and Foreign Relations Committee has the mandate to scrutinise the defence budget. The Committee also has the powers to summon under both the Article 125 of the Constitution and National Assembly Standing Orders section 191 to summon anyone to appear before it, including the cabinet secretary, as well leadership of the Kenya Defence Forces. [1] The committee also has power to request and receive papers and documents from the government and the public. [2]

Despite the powers and privileges above, the committees’ power and influence is only limited to recommending changes through policy recommendations, or inviting enforcing institutions to take action. Moreover, despite the powers to summon, some members of the government leadership often ignore committee summons. [1]

The Committee on Internal Affairs, Security and Oversight of the Kosovo Armed Forces (CIASOFAK) has the mandate to review the Kosovo Security Forces budget prior to its presentation or submission to the Assembly for adoption [1]. This committee is in charge of reviewing all supply projects that cost Euro 1million or more, including the projects funded by the Kosovo Government and donors, prior to presenting these to the Assembly for adoption [1]. The Committee also investigates all matters related to the Kosovo Security Forces’ organisation, financing, recruitment process, supply and distribution [1].
The Assembly also has a Capacity Building Facility (CBF) that reviews the country’s annual budget [1]. This Facility also reviews periodical reports from the Ministry of Finance on expenditures from various institutions and other budgetary organisations that report to the Assembly [1]. The CBF cooperates with other ministries within the Kosovo Government, and has the right to request relevant information and data, including direct reporting from the relevant Ministers pr other officials [1].
Despite the scope of activities and responsibilities of both the above Committee and Facility with regard to reviewing the budgetary issues, some elements of the budget remain under-supervised [1].

The Committee on Internal Affairs, Security and Oversight of the Kosovo Armed Forces (CIASOFAK) has not influenced decision-making within the Ministry of Defence or the Kosovo Security Forces.
However, there is no public information to confirm whether the Capacity Building Facility has influenced any of this decision-making.

Parliament’s Defence and Interior Affairs Committee has the right to scrutinise any aspect of the defence budget, demand information on anything it wants and summon the heads of security agencies or the Prime Minister for questioning, according to the constitution’s article 112, 101 and 102 (1) and the internal laws of Parliament article 76 and 147 (2). The committee can summon Government experts or the Parliament’s in-house experts, who are civil servants who are likely to be pro-Government, according to article 46 of the PIL (2). The law does not address the possibility of summoning an independent expert.

But article 147 cautions that the executive branch only has to cooperate on matters that are “under the jurisdiction of the Parliament.” This term is problematic because the Parliament’s specialties are not explicitly defined in the constitution or in Parliament’s Internal Laws, which offers these institutions a loophole through which they can escape parliamentary oversight, officials and activists say.

The SAB is also supposed to oversee every aspect of the defence policy but it does not usually fully assess performance or the political and social impact of their policies, like Parliament (3).

The defence committee reviews the budget and it has the means to take these institutions to task about their spending, but they often do not, partly because if their line of questioning becomes aggressive, they would be risking the disbandment of their chamber, but also because all five members of the committee are close to the executive branch, and many believe they might be, like other lawmakers before them, receiving bribes from it, officials and journalists said (1, 2, 3 and 4).

This is partly the result of the law Kuwait passed in 2016, which banned politicians accused of insulting the Emir from running for office, which ensured that lawmakers who are currently in Parliament are all pro-state (5). (Most politicians that are independent and critical of the authorities in Kuwait have been charged and found guilty of insulting the Emir.)

Since the lawmakers rarely ever offer substantial suggestions to these ministries, these ministries almost never have to revise their policies.

But on paper, the committee along with the rest of the Parliament have the right to review any procurement deal and refuse to approve funding for it. If these ministries feel strongly about the Parliament, the Emir can step in and approve the deal, according to article 70 of the constitution (6), bypassing the committee and Parliament as a whole.

The Budget and Finance (Taxation) Committee is the main sub-institution of the parliament with regards to drafting the state budget (the Public Expenditure and Audit Committee is in charge of vetting the expenditure), while the Committee for Defence, Internal Affairs and Corruption Prevention and the National Security Committee are also involved in vetting the state budget in their spheres of responsibility. They have full powers to scrutinise any aspect of the budget and expenditures, and can require expert witnesses to appear in front of them. [1]

The Budget and Finance committee is the responsible Committee for budget readings in Parlament. Additionally, both Committee for Defence, Internal Affairs and Corruption Prevention and National Security Committee conduct a detailed and comprehensive defence and other security institution budget review, according to the government reviewer. For example, Committee for Defence, Internal Affairs and Coruption Prevention 2020 year budget’s review took place in 4 committee meetings (16.10.2019., 29.10.2019., 05.11.2019., 06.11.2019.). The Budget and Finance Committee reviews all proposals other committees proposed and is responsible for main recomendations (support or decline) during law acceptance at Saeima.

While the Committee for Defence, Internal Affairs and Corruption Prevention is involved in the annual budget vetting process, it mostly sides with the position of the Cabinet of Ministers with regards to budget. On the one hand, this is logical as the poitical representation in the government is largely proportional to the representation in the paliament at large. On the other hand, the committee and parliament as a whole does not use the full potential of its power and de facto delegates extensive power to the executive branch, e.g. proposals with a significant impact in the draft state budget are predominantly proposed by the oppisition and rejected (e.g. as in 2017 [1]).

The National Defence, Interior, and Municipality Committee is not responsible for scrutinizing and analysing the defence budget. The Finance and Budget Parliamentary Committee is responsible for reviewing and studying the state budget proposal and the budgets attached to it (1), which includes the defence budget. A source confirmed that the defence parliamentary committee does not receive the defence budget to study and scrutinize (2). According to Article 43 of Parliament’s rules of procedure, the Finance and Budget Parliamentary Committee asks other particular parliamentary committees to meet when reviewing the budget related to its role (3). The committees then note down its comments on the budget. The head of the Finance and Budget Parliamentary Committee has the right to represent the committee’s comments to the parliament before voting on it (4).

As noted in 13A, the Finance and Budget Parliamentary Committee is responsible for reviewing the budget proposal for the specific year before it’s raised to the Parliament to be voted on. The Committee, when discussing the defense budget proposal, calls on the defense committee to join the dicussion. At that time, representatives of the LAF are also present in addition to the Minister of Defence. Members of the parliamentary committee discuss internal security and municipalities issues, besides defense matters.(1) According to a former Member of Parliament and a member of the parliamentary committee quoted in an interview, the committee avoids discussing defence issues and focuses on internal security (2). A source asserted the law of parliamentary committee’s influence on the decision-making process (1).

Both the Committee on National Security and Defence, as well as the Audit Committee, have formal rights to scrutinise the defence budget. The Defence committee considers activity reports from national security authorities and evaluates budget allocations for these institutions [1]. According to the Statute of Seimas (unicameral Parliament), the Audit Committee considers and submits conclusions regarding the national budget (including the defence budget) and – together with other Seimas committees – evaluates its rationale and efficiently [2].

The Ministry of Defence annually presents its activities, results and financial information to the Audit Committee which may question the decisions and make recommendations for the upcoming years. According to interviewees, the influence on decision making also largely depends on how much initiative and how much willingness the Head of the Committee shows to engage in the decision making process [1,2].

Until recently, there was no legislative committee or other appropriate body responsible for the scrutiny and analysis of the defence budget. The formulation of the annual defence budget is done internally by the Ministry of Defence (MINDEF) and is submitted to the Budget Division of the Treasury. The budget is presented together with the annual budget estimate to Parliament for approval. The new government has taken measures to address this lack of oversight by establishing several parliamentary Special Select Committees. [1] Among those that may be tasked to oversee the budget are the Special Select Committee for Budget and the Special Select Committee for Defence and Home Affairs. More details on the formal rights of the Special Select Committees could not be obtained online through the parliament’s website or other sources. The Public Accounts Committee (PAC) is responsible for scrutinising public expenditure, but its exact responsibilities and powers to examine the defence budget specifically are unclear. [2] Requesting official documents is difficult as Malaysia is currently under extended Movement Control Order due to the coronavirus pandemic.

This indicator is scored ‘Not Applicable’, as the Special Select Committees are too new and have yet to take action or make decisions. [1]

In parliament, the military budget is first examined by the Defence and Security Committee. The CDSPC invites the directors of all the main divisions of the armed forces, the army chiefs of staff, the army joint chiefs of staff and the Minister of Defence for discussions on the mission, the annual objectives and the budgetary requirements of the armed and security forces.¹ The committee has the power to propose amendments to the budget or a reformulation of the military’s objectives. The draft budget is then presented to the National Assembly for debate and voting.

SIPRI’s study in 2006 found that “there is little evidence that the process of budgeting is either transparent or consultative. State budgeting is still largely a private affair of the executive, with limited room for accountability.” It concludes that this is partly a result of the large proportion of power conferred on the executive by the constitution.¹
With the president’s son still serving as the chair of the defence and security committee, this remains the case.² While the CDSPC might be able to exert influence over the budget, it is simply not in a position to credibly challenge the executive’s spending plans given this obvious conflict of interests.
The assessor found no evidence to demonstrate that the CDSPC exercises meaningful control or oversight over defence spending. For instance, when news of the scandal concerning the CFA40 billion overspend on a new presidential jet emerged in 2014, it was civil society organisations rather than the CDSPC that were leading the calls for accountability.³ Unsurprisingly, the president’s son was not among those demanding that the executive publish details of the controversial purchase.
This view is confirmed by the editor of a Malian newspaper, who says the committee has no meaningful influence on decisions.⁵ A member of the CDSPC informed the assessor that the committee routinely examines the annual defence budget, before returning the legislation to the National Assembly for ratification.⁶

There is a legislative Committee (Committee on Budget and Public Account (CPCP)) and a technical body (The Superior Audit of the Federation (ASF)) with formal rights to scrutinise the defence budget.

The CPCP, made up of members of Congress with a three year term, is in charge of preparing the Opinion for the approval of the annual budget of all sectors, including that of SEDENA, and has the power to scrutinise the defence budget. [1] This includes investigative powers, requesting additional information, and filing reports to Congress with relevant information. There is a specific procedure for this scrutiny, however there is no legal mention of the power to request expert witnesses.
The Superior Audit of the Federation (ASF) is a technical body of the Congress, whose head is appointed by Congress for a period of seven years. It is in charge of analysing and overseeing the results of the management of federal public resources, including for SEDENA. Among its attributions are also to investigate the acts or omissions that imply some irregularity or illicit conduct in the entrance, exit, management, custody, and application of federal funds and resources, as well as to promote the responsibilities that may be appropriate, before the Federal Court of administrative justice and before the Special Prosecutor’s Office to Combat Corruption. [2]

Neither the CPCP nor the ASF has any powers to modify the defence budget. They only have the authority to issue recommendations in case of finding discrepancies. [1]

Although the budget may undergo changes throughout the year, these can only be requested by the interdepartmental agency and submitted to the SHCP for approval. [2]

The Parliamentary Committee for Security and Defence has the authority to review the Proposal of Law on Budget. Integral part of this law is the budget for defence. Also, there is a Parliamentary Committee for Economy Finance and Budget which is one of the main authorities in the review process of the Proposal of Law on Budget. National Security Council, among other things, has an authority to give an opinion to the Government on the budget proposals of the intelligence sector bodies. The Security Council reports twice a year to the Parlamentary Committee for Security and Defence on matters within its competence. [1][2][3]

The parliamentary Committee for Defence and Security has the power to scrutinise any aspect of the budget and expenditures, [4] and the Committee is allowed to engage expert witnesses to appear in front of it, as well as to establish working groups involving experts. [5]

In the last mandate of the Parliament, the Committee made no impact on the defence budget. Instead, in its reports the Committee only acknowledged information obtained, without submitting any amendments to the budget. [1][2][3][4][5][6][7] Some members of the Committee, representing opposition political parties, used to submit amendments to the budget, but those were never accepted by the ruling majority. [8][9][10][11] This Committee used to perform a more active role in the past, and it is criticised by civil society for lack of scrutiny and impact. [12]

There is no Defence committee within Parliament. However, there is a parliamentary Commission on Foreign Affairs, national defence, Islamic affairs and Moroccan residents abroad.(1)(2)However, this Commission on Foreign Affairs, national defence, Islamic affairs and Moroccan residents abroad lack any formal power according to internal regulations of the Lower Chamber of Parliament (Chambre des Représentants), including formal powers over the defence budget.(3)

The defence committee has no formal powers, therefore this sub-indicator is Not Applicable.

Parliament has the formal power to approve, refuse or curtail the proposed budget submitted by the Union Government, excluding the salary and allowances of members of institutions formed under the Constitution, foreign debts, expenditures required to satisfy judgement of any court or tribunal and expenditures charged by any existing law or any international treaty [1]. Both the Upper and Lower Houses have Public Accounts Committees and these committees have the power to scrutinise the defence budget [2,3]. The Joint Public Accounts Committee of Parliament has the power to review and analyse the previous government’s budget, the supplementary budget for the previous fiscal year and the budget for the next fiscal year [4]. The Joint Public Account Committee is the main committee responsible for the scrutiny and analysis of the Union budget, including the defence sector. There is no defence committee in either the Upper or Lower Houses [5,6].

The 1.7-billion-kyat defence budget proposed for the 2018-2019 fiscal year was cut by Parliament [1]. For the first time, the Union Parliament cut 10.6 billion kyats from the amount requested by the Ministry of Defence for the 2019-2020 Additional Interim Budget [2]. The Joint Public Account Committee has the authority to cut the budget but, in the case of the 2019-2020 fiscal year, the Committee acted as a negotiator between the Ministry of Defence and Daw May Win Myint, an MP who proposed cutting the defence budget [3]. So there are only two cases of the defence budget being cut from 2015 to 2020 and the Joint Public Account Committee failed to take the opportunity to oversee the defence budget.

The House of Representatives Standing Committee on Defence consists of 25 permanent members. The Committee is active in scrutinising budgets and acquisition decisions [1]. The House of Representatives, including the Standing Committee on Defence, has the right to assess, approve or reject any expenditures included in budgets and can also make changes to the budget by means of amendments [2]. The Standing Committee on Defence also analyses the implementation of the budget. The Standing Committee on Defence takes the lead during discussions about the budget and the defence equipment budget fund [2]. Section 27 of the Standing Committee’s Rules of Procedure (‘Powers of Committees’) stipulates that the Committee can call upon expert witnesses [1].

Members of the Standing Committee on Defence do introduce amendments to the budget. For example, a member of the Committee introduced an amendment to the budget statement in November 2019, which included a number of reductions and increases [1]. Though this specific amendment was rejected, budget amendments are accepted in some instances [2]. The Committee monitors and scrutinises the defence budget throughout the year through a combination of staff memos for rapporteurs, defence staff notes on budgets and legislative consultations for defence staff [3].

The FADTC has formal rights to report the following types of business to the House [1]: (a) bills; (b) inquiries and briefings (c) petitions; (d) annual reviews; (e) Estimates; (f) Supplementary Estimates; (g) international treaty examinations; (h) reports of Officers of Parliament; and (i) any other matters. [1].The FADTC has powers to send for evidence and persons, to include a summons after signing by the Speaker of the House [2]. The Auditor-General, meanwhile, is responsible for financial scrutiny and possess robust investigatory powers guided by stringent fiscal management legislation [3, 4, 5].

The FADTC holds two scheduled meetings a year, though it meets more than this. The first meeting, the “Estimates Hearing”, is held in early June shortly before the Budget announcement [1]. The second, the “Annual Hearing”, takes place in December and provides the committee with an opportunity to “question the Secretary of Defence and Chief of Defence Force on how their agencies operated during the previous Financial Year [… and which] In reality the questioning can be on any defence related matter” [2]. The FADTC’s effectiveness is difficult to measure, despite it possessing a broad sphere of activity. Many details of briefings remain unavailable, unless officially requested (though the briefing items are listed) [3]. The FADTC’s annual reports of the MoD and NZDF are, however, publicly available and provided to the House for consideration [4]. There is evidence that recommendations from the Auditor-General carry more weighting, as shown in the FADTC’s 2018/19 Annual Review of the Ministry of Defence [5]. However, in the case of the NZDF, it has been noted that some recommendations following the annual audit remain unresolved [6]. The content and attitude of the FADTC’s Annual Reviews also suggest that the Committee wields limited influence on decision-making unless coordinated with questions raised in the House. It therefore serves to provide comment and observation of activities for referral to the House.

The Nigerien National Assembly (NA) is constitutionally vested with formal rights to carry out oversight of all government actions; it can vote on all legislation, including defence budgets (article 114 of the Constitution). According to both the Constitution and the Internal Rules of the NA, the body also exercises a security budget approval function and a budget execution control function (1,2). Even though the NA is tasked with scrutiny and analysis of the state budget, by itself the budgetary analysis is not explicitly included in the list of functions of the Commission de la Défense et la Sécurité. 

According to Open Budget Survey 2017, the Niger legislature provides limited oversight during the planning stage of the budget cycle and weak oversight during the implementation stage of the budget cycle (1). Interviewees also confirmed this, by stating that the Committee cannot oversee the implementation process because it does not have all the necessary information (for example, it does not have the technical capacity to verify prices of military equipment) (2).
The assessor found no direct evidence indicating that the Committee exercises influence on defence budget decision-making, especially when the lack of technical expertise among Committee members is taken into consideration. However, the situation may change in the future, given the growing cooperation between DCAF and the Committee examined in other sub-indicators.

The House of Assembly has considerable powers set out in the Constitution to form committees to oversee the functions of government, including those of the MOD. The Defence Committee has the power to call any person to appear before it (1). But there is no evidence as to the precise extent of the powers of the Senate to scrutinise military budget (2).

The Defence Committee does formally review the defence budget (1), (2), but the review is subject to political influences and gains (3), (4), (5).

The Law on National Assembly outlines the representative character and supreme legislative power of the Parliament [1] while the Rules and Procedures of the Assembly of the North Macedonia establish “working bodies” to act as supervisory committees [2], including the Committee on Defence and Security [3]. Although its power is not explicit, this Committee has the right to review the national defence budget [4]. Over the period 2016-2018, as shown by the minutes from the Committee on Defence and Security sessions, there is no record any debates regarding the defence budget [5]. In fact, the defence budget, along with other budgetary items, was debated by the Finance and Budget Committee, which, according to the Rules and Procedures of the Assembly, is the parliamentary body principally responsible for budget items. It reviews the overall national budget of the country and oversees other finance-related issues [6]. The 2018 defence budget was only been tentatively reviewed and budgetary expenses were outlined in a summary format [7].

The Committee on Defence and Security reviews defence policies and issues amendments and recommendations. During the post-2016 period, the Ministry of Defence clearly incorporated suggestions made by the Committee, in line with the politically renewed focus on independence and reaction-oriented nature of Parliament [1]. However, given recent political crises in the country and the relaxation of legal requirements by the executive, it is still too early to measure how effectively Parliament continuously and consistently pattern adopts the Committee’s recommendations. As the European Commission’s Country Report from 2018 noted, “Parliament still needs to improve its performance as a forum for constructive political dialogue and enhance its legislative function” [2].

The Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs and Defence discusses the defence budget proposal submitted by the Ministry of the Defence and may recommend amendments, though its recommendations may only concern internal distribution of the allocated funds [1]. The Standing Committee on Finance and Economic Affairs is responsible for coordinating fiscal budget proceedings. It reviews the Government’s budget proposal before Parliament debates it in a plenary session and approves the allocation of the budget within the budgetary ceilings [1]. During the course of proceedings, the standing committees may call in representatives from ministries and organiations or experts or private individuals to hearings for the purpose of obtaining information. Organisations and individuals may also request to appear before a committee to present their views. These hearings must be held in public unless otherwise decided [2, 3].

The Government is legally required to seek approval from Parliament prior to shifting funds between administrative units that receive explicit funding in the approved budget; prior to spending excess revenue that may become available during the budget execution period; and prior to reducing spending below the levels in the enacted budget in response to revenue shortfalls [1]. A review of the available documents shows that in 2019 the majority of the Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs and Defence did not recommend any amendments to the defence budget proposal [2, 3]. However, the committee proposed amendments in 2018 which resulted in changes to the original budget proposal [4]. The mid-year expenditure review begins when the Government submits a Revised National Budget [5]. Any royal proposition concerning amendments to all the separate budgets of the individual ministries must be submitted by 15 May during the fiscal year concerned, in the submission of the Report to the Parliament concerning the Revised National Budget. The Standing Committee on Finance and Economic Affairs submits recommendations concerning such amendments by the second Friday in June at the very latest [6]. The Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs and Defence is responsible for reviewing the amendments proposed by the Ministry of Defence and usually issue its recommendation in December of the fiscal year [7].

There is no legislative council in Oman, the al-Shura is only a semi-consultative body. It has not discussed or reviewed any of the defence budgets. If they have discussed defence budgets, it was not thorough and there is no report of the discussions (1), (2). In 2015, the State Council accepted a proposal to form an ad-hoc committee dedicated to studying draft budgets, scrutinise the annual budget of 2016 and the draft 9th five-year plan 2016-2020 (3), (4). In November 2017, the Economic and Financial Committee studied the draft budget before it was submitted to the Majlis al-Shura (5). The al-Shura website, on the Economic and Financial Committee page states “the committee shall be tasked with studying and giving opinion[s]” on economic and financial policies, plans, draft laws and proposals including economic development projects in the state budget and five-year development plan (6). The mandate is restricted to economic and financial policy and as stated the committee acts to study and offer opinions; it has no formal rights to change policy. According to media reports (4), (5), the economic and financial committee is tasked with scrutinising draft budgets. No mention is made to their formal rights over the budget, nor is any reference made specifically to their mandate to study the defence budget. In sub-indicator 2A, a Defence, Security and Foreign Relations Committee is highlighted; however, this committee is not on the Arabic website, and no information exists about this committee (7). There is no defence committee dedicated to budget scrutiny; the Economic and Financial Committee that scrutinises the budget has no formal rights vis-à-vis studying the defence budget.

This indicator has been marked Not Applicable because there is no legislative committee responsible for defence budget scrutiny.

The al-Shura has no influence or any impact on the decision-making process within the armed forces, and therefore, the work of any committee is irrelevant to the decision making of the armed forces. There is no committee responsible for defence budget scrutiny and analysis (1), (2).

As there is no active legislative council, there is not any active committee; military or non-military (1). The legislative council is caught amid political division between Fatah and Hamas, where Israel imprisons many MPs which make it hard for Hamas and the PLC to have enough members to meet actively.

This indicator has been marked Not Applicable because there is no active legislative council.

The legislative council has no effective scrutiny or influence on any of the national security or national forces (1). The Parliament has been inactive since 2007, and the executive has replaced the Parliament in almost all aspects of political life.

Scrutiny is chiefly in the hands of the House and Senate Committee on Appropriations and other committees and interested congressional members who have the power to issue subpoena witnesses [1]. However scrutiny does not extend to all aspects of the budget and expenditures, especially pertaining to intelligence funds [2, 3]. The legislature could legally conduct an investigation but there culture in the House of Representatives is such that to do so would be seen as to scrutinise the president himself [4, 5]. The political dynamics in the House are usually heavily dependent on the sitting administration [5].

Periodic concerns are raised on specific line items in the budget, but amendments of defence budgets during the period in question were limited and relatively insignificant [1, 2].

The Parliamentary National Defence Committee has formal rights of scrutiny over the defence budget. According to paragraph 14 of Annex 1 to the Statute of Sejm of the Republic of Poland [1], the scope of activity of the committee includes “defence matters, in particular concerning the activities of the armed forces, the system and functioning of the territorial defence of the country and civil defence, performance of duties in the area of strengthening defence by state organs and state enterprises, cooperative and social organizations, and by citizens, as well as the defence industry.”
Detailed analysis and recommendations are prepared by the Standing Subcommittee on the Budget, Finances and Structure of the Polish Armed Forces [2].
It should be mentioned that only ministers and heads of other state institutions are obliged to respond to the requests of the committee in meetings, either in person or through their representatives. The other stakeholders invited may ignore an invitation (Statue of the Sejm, article 153). Also, participating state representatives or experts do not bear criminal responsibility for giving false testimonies as witnesses in court [1].

The committee submits an opinion during the preparation of the state budget proposal concerning the budget of the Ministry of National Defence [1]. It also prepares an assessment of the implementation of the MoND’s budget for the previous financial year. This evaluation takes into account the results of the annual assessment done by the Supreme Audit Office [2]. However, the minutes of the review of the committee and reports [3] show that the committee has self-limited its formal powers to review and influence the defence budget to two cases:
– Resolutions on the draft defence budget, always positive, with one request over two and a half years.
– Resolutions on the defence budget spending (with no requests for two and a half years). Discussions on the spending have been based mainly on the findings of the Supreme Audit Office, not on the committee’s reviews or investigations.

The National Defence Committee (NDC) formally scrutinises the defence budget proposal [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6] (refer to Q1A, Q2A, Q2E and Q2F), but does not scrutinise expenditure, nor does it perform ongoing monitoring. Its yearly reviews show the limited scope of analysis [7, 8, 9] (refer to Q2F). It is entitled to require witnesses to appear before it [10] (refer to Q2A), and there is evidence it does so [11] (refer to Q1B).

A review of the NDC’s yearly budgetary scrutiny and hearings of the minister of defence suggests very limited impact (refer to Q2F). The NDC’s reports do not scrutinize the defence budget as much as validate its formal structure: there is no critical evaluation of budgetary allocations; instead, the NDC repeats the government’s proposal.

The Advisory Council, which is not a legislative body, does not have a committee that scrutinizes the defence budget. There is no legislative committee that has formal powers over the defence budget. The legislature has five main committees, 1) Legal and Legislative Affairs Committee, 2) Financial and Economic Affairs Committee, 3) Services and Facilities Committee, 4) Internal and External Affairs Committee, 5) Committee for Cultural Affairs and Information. However, none of these committees have any responsibility related to the defence and security budget. Matters related to Ministry of Defence affairs and the armed forces do not get scrutinised and/or audited [1,2]. The Emir, who is also the chief commander of the armed forces, has the final say in relation to approving budgets. Defence budgets are handled with extreme secrecy and are highly confidential [3,4].

This sub-indicator has been marked as Not Applicable as there is no legislative committee responsible for defence budget scrutiny and analysis [1,2].

The State Duma Committee on Defence has the power to conduct preliminary reviews of and deliver opinions on bills concerning defence policy, activities, and budget, and to prepare them for revision by the State Duma [1]. Federal Law No. 77 ‘On Parliamentary Control’ entitles the State Duma Committee on Defence and the Federation Council Committee on Defense and Security to question representatives of the executive branch, including the Ministry of Defence, and to conduct parliamentary investigation whenever neccessary [2]. According to the Interviewee 1, the Committee on Defence can request expert witnesses, however it is impossible to check whether they use this opportunity [3].

The State Duma Committee on Defence does not seem to have any impact on defence budget decision-making. Its conclusions regarding the defence budget for the last three years (2017-2019) are almost carbon-copied from year to year [1,2,3]:
1) First, they say the budget is made up in acordance with the demands of the budget laws of the Russian Federation;
2) Second, they state the overall sums of money assigned for defence;
3) Third, they reiterate that the proposed budget will enable the implementation of strategic defence goals;
4) Then, they provide one to two recommendations regarding social payments for military servicemen;
5) Finally, they suggest that the recommendations ‘may be incorporated into the bill for the second reading’ but always recommend that the State Duma ‘pass the bill in the first reading.’

As noted above, there is a Security Affairs Committee in the Majlis al-Shura, which has the power to summon and question government ministers (1). However, there is no evidence to suggest that this committee or the Majlis al-Shura as a whole, which is a consultative body, has any control or influence over military and defence spending. According to our sources, the Majlis has no authority to scrutinize the defence budget or oversight over defence expenses in any way. The defence budget, is in the hands of the Office of the Crown Prince no one can oppose or question it (2), (3).

According to the Security Affairs Committee’s publicly available agendas detailing various meetings in the second year of its seventh term, the committee members gave their opinions on the annual reports of both the Ministry of Defence (4) and the Ministry of the National Guard (5), the latter of which is responsible for the Saudi Arabian National Guard, a branch of the country’s military. However, there is no indication that the members discussed budgetary matters relating to these two bodies.

According to a former member of the Majlis al-Shura, who served there for three years, “while the Majlis scrutinizes every other aspect of the budget, they are not allowed to scrutinize or study the defence budget in any way nor have they ever done so during my time there” (6).

It is unclear whether the unelected CPSA (see above) in turn has responsibility for defence budget scrutiny. Its mandate as described in Saudi government literature includes raising efficiency and coordination between various government bodies and ministries; as well as accelerating decision-making mechanisms, following up on implementation and drawing future trends (7), (8). No mention is made of any oversight concerning defence and military budgets.

This sub-indicator has been scored Not Applicable as the legislative committee has no formal powers.

According to our sources, neither the Majlis nor the anti-corruption committee has formal authority or influence on the decision making process on the budget or other administrative decisions. The CPSA, headed by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, is unlikely to function as an independent check on the central government’s defence policy (1), (2).

The General Audit Bureau (GAB), a Saudi government entity, has at times scrutinized Saudi defence and military spending. The GAB’s charter encompasses auditing the budgets of all Saudi ministries and departments; however, it is unclear if this extends to the ministries of defence and interior (3). In late 2017, in conjunction with the government’s anti-corruption purge, the GAB published a report which claimed to reveal large financial irregularities in one of the departments of the Saudi Arabian National Guard. This reportedly included violations relating to payroll, allowances, financial benefits, recruitment, and contracting (4). However, this appears to be an ad hoc audit rather than an example of formal authority or influence over the defence budget, and was likely prompted by Mohammed bin Salman.

The Defence and Internal Affairs Committee (DIAC) has the formal powers to oversee the defence budget planning and spending, whereas the Security Services Control Committee (SSCC) can scrutinise the budget of military security and intelligence agency [1]. Members of the two committees have the formal right to access classified data to perform their task of monitoring and control in the field of security and defence [2], they can also discuss confidential budget items during the sessions closed for public.

Since the last parliamentary elections in 2016, neither the DIAC nor the SSCC has deliberated on the budget proposals or their realisations plans [1, 2]. While discussing the quarterly reports on the MoD’s work, members of these committees have touched upon certain budget items, however, without going into any detail. Parliamentary scrutiny and analysis of the defence budget are very limited and thus, do not affect the decision-making process.

Government Parliamentary Committees (GPCs) have been set up by the People’s Action Party (PAP) in 1987 to scrutinise legislation and programmes of the various ministries. The Government Parliamentary Committee for Defence and Foreign Affairs (GPC-DFA), in particular, has been charged with scrutinising the defence budget, among other roles. They are also expected to serve as an additional channel of feedback on government policies [1]. However, GPC-DFA’s formal rights in terms of scrutinising the defence budget appear to be limited – since this function is mainly conducted by other bodies, such as the Committee of Supply and the Estimates Committee [2,3].

Although the GPC-DFA members can scrutinise the defence budget, there is no evidence to suggest that it has exercised its right to query and raise concerns about procurement activity or anomalies, nor attempted to influence decision making beyond espousing support for sustained defence spending [1, 2].

The review of the annual defence budget is given to the Portfolio Committee on Defence and Military Veterans. As per section 5 of the Money Bills Amendment Procedure and Related Matters Act, each portfolio committee must submit an annual budgetary review and recommendation report for tabling in the National Assembly which assesses the department’s service delivery performance, the effectiveness and efficiency of the department’s use of its resources, and any recommendations for future changes. This report must be submitted after the National Assembly adopts the Appropriation Bill but before the adoption of the reports on the Medium Term Budget Policy Statement [1].

It’s unclear whether the committee itself has the power to directly reject or force the amendment of a defence budget. In a discussion in the committee on the adoption of a report on the 2011/12 defence budget, members were under the impression that if they failed to vote in favour of the report the department would go unfunded. A Mayiza, a ruling party MP, is reported to have said that ‘no allocation would be made to the Department if the budget was rejected by the Committee’ [2]. However, in terms of legislation, only the Appropriations Committee is permitted to vote directly on the annual Appropriation Bill before it is sent to the National Assembly for adoption [3].

In terms of formal powers, Section 30 of the South African Constitution empowers any of the committees in the National Assembly to be able to: — (a) summon any person to appear before it to give evidence on oath or affirmation, or to produce documents; (b) require any person or institution to report to it; (c) compel, in terms of national legislation or the rules and orders, any person or institution to comply with a summons or requirement in terms of paragraph (a) or (b); and (d) receive petitions, representations or submissions from any interested persons or institutions [4].

Despite its powers, the Parliamentary Committee Defence & Military Veterans (PCDMV) seldom uses them to provide effective oversight in committee. Several committee members instead turn to making public statements in the media to draw attention to areas of concern [1].

The National Defence Committee and the Special Committee on Budget and Accounts at the National Assembly have formal rights to scrutinise the defence budget. The primary role of the National Defence Committee, which has 17 members, is to examine the policy and expenditure of the Ministry of National Defence and associated public entities. [1] [2] [3] While the government has the authority to shape national budgets, the budget proposal must be scrutinised and approved by the National Assembly according to Article 52 of the Constitution. [3] The Special Committee on Budget and Accounts, which consists of 50 lawmakers, has the power to review and amend the government’s budgetary proposal. [1] [4] Members of these committees can require up to 3 experts to assist in examining legislation or important matters according to Article 43 of the National Assembly Act. [1]

The defence budget is first reviewed and amended by the National Defence Committee and then forwarded to the Special Committee on Budget and Accounts for further approval and amendments. [1] Although the National Assembly possesses the power to cut the budget, government consent is required to raise the budget. [2] There is evidence that two committees have actively engaged in budgetary amendments while reviewing the defence budget planning. [3] An interview with senior staff at the National Defence Committee suggests that the total budget is rarely cut, but the details are actively increased and reduced. [4] The mid-year expenditure review takes place at the National Defence Committee and the Special Committee on Budget and Accounts, and reviewed expenditure must be approved by the plenary session. When illegal or unjustifiable matters arise during the examination of accounts, the government or relevant agencies should correct them promptly and report to the National Assembly. [1]

The Defence and Security Committee has (in theory) all the powers necessary, drawing such powers from the Constitution (See Part 5, Chapter 1, (54)) [1].

Although there is a Defence Committee in the National Legislative Assembly, its role in oversight on finance, acquisitions, and budget scrutiny is hardly visible to the public. [1] As such there is no publicly available information to score this indicator and it has been marked ‘Not Enough Information’.

There is a Legislative Committee and a Defence Committee that can request data and can claim the presence of members of the government [1], as stated in Article 110.1 of the Spanish Constitution [2]. The committee does not have access to the entire budget because of the restrictions on access to the information given by the Law on Official Secrets [3].

Usually, members of the Defence Committee receive information from mass media before the Ministry of Defence, which is the case for one of the most relevant aspects of the defence budget, the so-called ‘new cycles of investment in defence’, related to the acquisition of armaments programmes [4]. In fact, there is no budgetary follow-up or oversight in the Defence Committee beyond some concrete aspects of the budget that generate controversies, which members of the committee can demand specific sessions to deal with them [5].

In practice, there are a number of factors that significantly limit the capacity of the Defence Committee with regard to the budget. On the one hand, it can only deal with the budget of the Ministry of Defence, other items in other ministries’ budgets are debated by their respective committees, who often lack the necessary knowledge about security and defence matters [1]. On the other hand, a number of key issues, most notably foreign military operations and special arms programmes, lack real budgets, as they rely on extraordinary proceedings that in theory are intended only for urgent matters (and not regular ones, as it is often the case). There have been just a few sessions related to the defence budget in the period 2015-2020 [2]. Moreover, comments from members of the Committee used to have no significant consequence, as critical interventions come from minority groups [1].

At this time, a transitional legislature has not yet been appointed or elected in Sudan [1]; the appointment of a legislative council is forecasted for the near future, whereas the election of a legitimately elected representative council will follow in late 2022 at the earliest [2]. According to the Inter-Parliamentary Union, under the former Bashir-led regime, a defence committee oversaw policy, but the whole national assembly – not a specialised committee committed to focussing on the defence budget – conducted oversight of the public defence budget. Parliament was required to approve the entire national budget on an annual basis by December 31 or the budget would default to the previous year’s budget figures until a new budget was passed. Parliament was constitutionally empowered to request reports from or question cabinet ministers and recommend that the President remove them from office [3].

This indicator is marked Not Applicable. Since Sudan currently has no legislature, there is no legislative committee or other entity that is responsible for budget scrutiny and analysis. An expert on Sudan’s security sector, who has published extensively on the topic [1], said in a phone interview that he doesn’t believe that, even after a legislature is appointed, it will have any ability to effectively demand to scrutinise the defence budget; most of the military organisations who were active and hid their activities before the ouster of President Bashir in 2019 will continue to hide their revenue generation and spending activities, and an appointed – rather than elected – legislature will have little power to command the military officials who lead the Sovereignty Council and select the Ministers of Defence and Interior to produce and share their budgets.

The Constitutional Committee and the parliament’s other committees such as the Defence Committee and the Foreign Policy Committee have extensive formal rights of scrutiny of defence budgets, as well as of the defence and security policy in general. They may call witnesses to appear in front of it (see also Q2A and Q3C). The legal framework for the work of these committees is set out in the Constitution [1] and the Parliament Act [2].

Before MPs vote on budget bills in the beginning of each calendar year, parliamentary committees like the Defence Comittee debate the government’s budget propositions extensively, introduce amendments to their respective expenditure area, and engage in mid-year expenditure reviews. Based on Defence Committee recommendations, the parliament typically insists on several amendments to the government’s initial budget proposals before voting [1] [2] [3]. In 2019, for instance, parliament refused the government’s proposal to lease military materiel to other states [2].

Both chambers of the Federal Assembly have security committee, the Security Policy Committee (SPC). There are 13 members on the Council of States and 25 on the commission of the National Assembly. They have extensive rights to scrutinize questions related to defence. They cover “Army (incl. military buildings), Internal security (incl. border security and security network), Fight against terrorism, police coordination and police services, Civil protection, Civilian service, Security and peace policy, Military and civil peace support in security policy, Armament policy, armaments companies, Arms, Disarmament and non-proliferation, Arms exports and dual-use goods, National economic supply, Strategic leadership training, federal crisis management, Cyber security and cyber defence, and Reporting on NATO delegation’s activities” [1, 2]. There is also the sub-committee of the Finance Committee of the Federal Assembly, which is overseeing the Federal Department of Defence, Civil Protection and Sport (DDPS) and the Federal Department of Justice and Police (FDJP) in financial matters. It has the same powers as the SPC [3, 4].

The SPC makes recommendations to the Federal Assembly concerning government proposals and the budget. An item will first be discussed in the committee, which then will vote on recommendations and amendments. This applies to the committee of both chambers, which do independently fulfil this function [1]. Furthermore, parliamentarians or parliamentarian groups have the right to propose amendments [2]. In the period covered by this index, there were no major amendments from the commissions. An example of a compromise coming out of the two SPC committees concerned the approval of the procurement of bulletproof vests for the army. The proposed credit was disputed, and in the end, the budget was reduced by 15% [3]. The budget is in the responsibility of the Finance Committee [4]. There are two yearly projections (“Hochrechnungen”) that are published and passed to the Finance Committee of the Parliament. They have to be submitted on 30 June and 30 September of each year (Article 142.4 ParlA) [5].

LY’s Foreign and National Defence Committee is responsible for exercising parliamentary powers of national security and national defence related to powers of the MND and the NSB: the committee approves and vetoes laws; reviews, approves, and reject budgets; and amends or rejecs policies [1].

According to the Organisation Law of the LY, LY’s Budget Centre serves as the main organ to facilitate LY’s Foreign and National Defence Committee to exercise parliamentary powers over the MND and the NSB concerning budget proposal, review, and approval [1].

CY’s Committee on National Defence and Intelligence Affairs has the power to investigate and control national security affairs related to defence and intelligence. The committee has the power to investigate and scrutinise specific cases and persons, and to propose corrective measures, censure, or impeach civilian officials in the government and military officers in the armed forces [2].

The LY’s Foreign and National Defence Committee has certain rights of scrutiny of the annual defence budget; however, legislators from opposition parties still challenge that the committee does not have the enough power, e.g. formal legislative enquiry, to scrutinise any aspect of budget and expenditures; e.g. Indigenous Defence Submarine (IDS) Program [3, 4, 5].

LY’s Foreign and National Defence Committee is the primary institution responsible for exercising parliamentary powers of national security and national defence related to the MND and the NSB. The committee has the legislative & budgetary power to approve and veto laws, review, approve, or reject budgets, and amend or reject policy [1, 2]. LY’s Foreign and National Defence Committee reviews the annual defence budget and attemps to influence budgetary decisions through formal mechanisms; however, legislators from the opposition parties regard these attempts are still limited [3, 4, 5]. There is no detail as to whether they undertake mid-year reviews.

A defence committee exists which is known as the Standing Committee for Foreign Affairs, Defence and Security. The committee was established according to Permanent Parliament Standing Orders of June 2020. [1] It can scrutinise the budget but does not seem to scrutinise further forms of expenditure. In practice, judging by its annual reports, it interacts with public officials regularly, but does not call expert witnesses. However, other standing committees have the authority to do so. [2] [3] [4]

The committee can be influential, but at a limited level. According to the Parliament Standing Orders, one of the functions of the Foreign affairs, Defence and Security Committee (FDSC) is to review the budget of the defence and security organs of the nation, issuing amendments when there is a need to do so and outlining recommendations for ministries to act upon, although there is no specified time period given to ministries to work upon the recommendations. [2] Reviewing and reporting is often done annually before the next sitting of government budget. For example, the annual committee report on implementation of its duties for the year 2019-2020 explicitly shows how the committe is perfomimg its roles under section 2.1.8 of the report where it highlights the budgetary review of the Ministry of Defence and National Service by showing the allocation of about 54% of fund between July 2019-December 2020. It further shows how the budgetary funds were not allocated as per request and sets out its recommendations. [1] Apart from that, during the presentation of the Ministry of Defence and National Service budget for the year 2020/2021, the committee was able to ask the government to increase the docket’s budget and release funds for timely completion of the ministry’s headquarters in Dodoma. It also insisted that the government release funds for the compensation of people who have given up their land to be used by the millitary.

According to Thailand’s constitution, the Thai parliament has the power and duty to conduct state affairs and promulgate laws. With respect to Thailand’s defence budgeting system, it is the duty of the government to propose the defence budget bill to parliament, which then sets up a subcommittee consisting of selected MPs, as well as experts and academics, to help oversee and audit the budgeting process within the Ministry of Defence (MoD). However, after the budget bill is passed by parliament, it is the duty of the National Auditing Office to oversee the spending both at a national level and internally [1]. A permanent budget committee does not exist. According to Section 238 of the Constitution, the State Audit Commission consists of seven commissioners appointed by the King, upon the advice of the Senate, from the persons selected by the selection committee. The selected persons must be persons with evident integrity who have at least ten years’ worth of knowledge, expertise and experience related to the state audit, law, accounting, internal audit, public finance or other fields that are beneficial to the state audit in order for their advice, suggestions or recommendations regarding the spending of State funds to be in accordance with the law on financial and fiscal discipline of the State. This includes proposals to State agencies to correct defects in the spending of State funds [2]. The annual budget debate is where parliament grants or refuses approval of the government budget proposal as well as the proportion of the national budget to be given to each ministry. Parliament not only has the power and duty to approve the MoD’s budgetary bill but also to control the administration of the MoD by various means, such as interpellation, demanding hearings and censure debates [1]. However, this system is undermined by the problem of the power structure, in which the Senate is appointed by the NCPO, leading to the continuation of military influence in parliament [3].

In addition, in Thailand, the laws that apply to budget scrutiny in the defence sector are limited. For example, the budget for procurement relating to national security is subject solely to internal audit, while the secret defence budget is reported to the Prime Minister directly and does not require parliamentary scrutiny [4]. In 2020, the budget committee complained about military personnel interrupting its meeting and seizing all financial documents relating to spending by the Ministry of Defence. A spokesman for the Ministry of Defence announced that it was standard procedure for army personnel to take back top secret documents from any government meeting in order to prevent leaks of sensitive information about arms purchases and acquisitions [5]. In summary, the subcommittee does not have the power to amend budget proposals, while its power to subpoena documents or witnesses is limited.

Despite the powers outlined in 13A, the role of the Thai parliament in overseeing and controlling the defence budget is determined by the reality of Thai politics, in which social power structures play a significant role in promoting military interests. It should be noted that the junta has significantly increased defence spending year on year since the 2014 coup and many committee chairs and members are former military officials [1]. After the 2019 general election, the opposition took aim at the proposed 124-billion-baht budget for the Ministry of Defence, with the focus of attack centred on the planned purchase of two submarines worth 22.5 billion baht. However, the majority of lawmakers eventually approved the Ministry of Defence’s budget proposal with a vote of 247:195, with 11 abstaining [2]. This event strengthened the pro-military ruling coalition, especially considering the fact that a key opposition party (FFP) was dissolved by the court a few weeks later [3]. Most importantly, a permanent budget committee for the defence sector does not exist. Additionally, the subcommittee referenced in 13A does not have power to amend the budget proposals, and its power to subpoena documents or witnesses is limited.

According to our sources, the Tunisian Parliament has more than one committee that have the right to scrutinise all matters related to the budget of the defence and security sector(3,4). The committees have the right to access and ask for documents and also question the Minister of Defence(3,4). Article 93 of the rules of procedure of the National Representatives Assembly established a special committee named “Security and defence committee”. This committee monitors all files and issues related to security and defence (1). There is also a finance committee (named finance, planning, and development committee and chaired by a member of the opposition) in charge of projects and issues related to the budget, loans and financial affairs of the state including the Ministry of Defence. The Ministry of Defence’s budget is submitted to this committee (2).

Legally, the defence and security committee has the right to scrutinise and analyse the budget, however, in practice evidence of effective scrutiny could not be found. According to our sources, there are some confidential meetings within these committees that discuss the defence budget, but they are not publicly available and no reports have been issued from such meetings that we are aware of (1,2). The review of the report of the defence and security committee shows that this committee didn’t discuss issues related to the defence budget (3). The finance committee reviews the budgets of all Ministries including the Ministry of Defence.

The oversight of military spending must be analysed at each of its three levels:
– legislative (Turkish Grand National Assembly),
– executive (Government and Ministry of Defence),
– judicial (Court of Accounts).
In practice, neither the TGNA Planning and Budgetary Commission nor the TGNA General Assembly are really able to supervise military spending. Another institution that is crucial to parliamentary oversight of military spending is the National Defence Committee (NDC). The NDC is one of the permanent expert committees recognised by Article 20 of the TGNA Rules of Procedure. However, the committee is not authorised to determine the defence budget or arms procurement. The second level of oversight of military expenditure is the executive level. The Ministry acts as a ‘buffer’ between the TGNA and the Armed Forces, effectively blocking supervision and administration by the former of the latter [1].

In order to tackle the lack of any transparent auditing of military expenditure, which is also criticised by the EU, the Government amended the Law on the Court of Accounts in 2010 to ensure part of military spending was subject to the court’s oversight in 2010. The original amendments to the Law on the Court of Accounts required an audit of all military expenditure, including defence expenditure. However, due to a last-minute modification to the bill, a significant portion of military spending was again excluded from the Court of Accounts’ jurisdiction, which drew much public criticism. The new law still allowed inspectors to conduct audits to assess whether resources are used effectively in a state institution and it still allowed the Court of Accounts to audit military-run firms. The General Staff was a strong critic of the new law, which is seen as a major step in Turkey’s EU harmonisation process, despite deficiencies. It argued that the supervision of military expenditure by the Court of Accounts would end the tradition of military secrecy. However, the law was amended later in 2012 and 2014, with added clauses that pose an additional obstacle to the transparency of the audit results.

As emphasised above, the budget bill is examined by the Parliamentary Budget Commission. During this examination, the Minister of Defence comes to the commission for a hearing, where he/she delivers a presentation of the defence budget, while the Minister of Internal Affairs presents the budgets of National Police, the Gendarmerie Command and the Coast Guard. As the budget of the National Intelligence Agency is secret, no public meeting is held about it. The bill is adopted by the commission within 55 days; it is then debated and voted on in a plenary session of parliament before the beginning of the fiscal year. It should be noted that parliament cannot conduct a performance audit/oversight of the executive branch’s spending of the defence/security budget. It should also be noted that the hearings of the Minister of Defence and the Minister of Internal Affairs before the Parliamentary Budget Commission and the information they deliver carry the utmost significance because this is an important opportunity for legislative monitoring and oversight [1,2].

Interviewee 6 suggested that there are no legislative mechanisms for overseeing/monitoring the expenses of the defence budget or for conducting policy impact analysis after the budget allocated for any specific project has been spent [3]. A very good example that demonstrates the lack of legislative mechanisms for defence projects is the acquisition of the Russian S-400 mid-range air/ballistic missile systems.

Interviewee 1 suggested that the National Security Council reviews the defence budget, in the form of questions asked to the Minister of Defence and Minister of Internal Affairs, for more elucidation and to learn more about the rational behind the budget numbers. However, according to Interviewee 1, the Council fails to take advantage of its formal powers of scrutiny [1]. It may exercise informal influence over the budget if the Council’s interventions are taken seriously by the Government. Interviewee 1 also underlined that the Council can not conduct scrutiny of compliance or performance audits of the executive bodies on acquisition planning, procurement or asset disposal [1]. It should be noted that the Council has no actual influence on decision making. The National Defence Committee (NDC) is comprised of experts, who are meant to serve as a critical element contributing to the oversight of military expenditures. In practice, however, the Commission can neither determine the defence budget nor decide on arms procurement due to the strong miltary legacy and a lack of expertise. Consequently, the Ministry bypasses it when the budget is prepared, meaning that parliament has no input on important spending decisions such as defence procurement. While there are other methods of parliamentary oversight that are legally established (i.e. oral inquiries, general debate, parliamentary questioning and investigation), they are not commonly used.

Article 90 (1) of the Constitution [1] states that Parliament shall appoint standing committees and other committees necessary for the efficient discharge of its functions [2]. These committees can call on expert witnesses. They have also called on high profile ministry officials to answer certain queries. While committees are mandated to carry out their functions, sometimes they are constrained by political pressures from carrying out their mandate effectively [3, 4]. Their major weakness is its inability to scrutinise classified budget.

The Defence and Internal Affairs Committee meets various high-ranking members of the military and police on a range of issues related to security and defence budget and policies [1]. They also scrutinise their budgets and expenditure [2]. For example, legislators on the Committee on Public Accounts (Central Government) queried procurements by the Ministry of Defence and Veterans Affairs (MoDVA) in which goods were supplied before signing contracts with suppliers. The Committee on Public Accounts were dissatisfied with explanations given by a MoDVA team justifying the procurements, which they said did not follow the Public Procurement and Disposal of Public Assets Act. The biggest challenge which these committees face is when it comes to classified budget and expenditure, there is very little they can do to get more details on these budgets, rendering their powers limited.

Ukrainian MPs adopt the state budget (including for defence and security) by voting for the annual Law on State Budget. The VRU Committee on National Security and Defence is empowered to control the execution of the State Budget of Ukraine (the defence aspects) to ensure expediency and efficiency of state funds usage [1]. The Committee can also engage experts in working groups [2]. There is also the State Audit Service that carries out the external financial control function [3] as well as the Accounting Chamber that carries out the same function but also including the financial control over classified spendings on behalf of the VRU [4]. Both authorities scrutinize the MOD [5, 6]. From a formal perspective, there is also the control of the State defence order (SDO) by the Ministry of economic development and trade and the National Security and Defence Council of Ukraine [7]. The Ministry of Economy has a role of State Defence Order coordinator (according to the Law on State Defence Order) and has no powers to control the implementation process.

The defence budget of Ukraine is a part of the annual State Budget of Ukraine and falls under its regulations [1]. The competences of the VRU Committees are established by VRU Resolution [2]. The resolution states that the Budget Committee of the VRU has competence in the sphere of the State Budget of Ukraine [2]. Nevertheless, all MPs of the VRU are empowered to introduce laws and amendments to laws (including to the annual Law On The State Budget of Ukraine) since they are subjects of legislative initiative. There is no evidence on the Committee for National Security and Defence that would suggest any alterations to the draft Law On The State Budget of Ukraine being made for 2017 and 2018 following the draft laws introduced to the VRU and before their adoption [3, 4]. Moreover, several MPs from the Committee for National Security and Defence suggested modifications to the draft Law On The State Budget of Ukraine for 2017 and 2018 while only a few of them being incorporated. There is also no evidence for members of the Committee for National Security and Defence to initiate amendments to defence expenditures of the State Budget of Ukraine for 2017 and 2018 [5, 6], although MPs stated their intentions to do so [7].

There is no legislative body such as a parliament responsible for issuing, discussing and drafting laws, or reviewing any budget. It is a consultative body that has no authority or power to discuss the defence budget (1), (2).

This sub-indicator has been marked as Not Applicable. Despite the existence of a defence committee within the FNC (the consultative body), the committee lacks formal powers and for this reason; an assessment of influence on decision-making is irrelevant in this context (1), (2).

The Defence Committee has extensive formal rights of scrutiny of the defence budget [1]. It scrutinises the MoD’s budgetary estimates, which are provided in its Main Supply Estimates. The Defence Committee has the necessary access to information to conduct effective scrutiny. It has the power to summon witnesses and demand documents as it sees fit [1]. The oversight framework over the defence budget also includes other oversight committees, such as the Public Administration Committee, Public Accounts Committee, and Lords International Relations and Defence Committee, [2, 3, 4]. Additionally, the National Audit Office has autonomy to conduct investigations and report to Parliament via powers enshrined in the National Audit Act 1983 [5].

Both the Defence Committee as well as the Joint Committee on the National Security Strategy review the defence budget and issue recommendations [1, 2]. However, it is not clear if either of these Committees has introduced ammendments to the budget that has resulted in changes to the budget, or that they can strike out expenditures before they are incurred.

The Public Accounts Committee (PAC) ensures transparency and accountability in government financial operations. The PAC takes evidence from the MOD about their actions on NAO recommendations. For instance, in 2019/20, the PAC held five hearings with the MoD following NAO audit reports [3]. However, there is little infromation available on the committee’s ability influence decision-making in practice.

For the defence budget, funds must be ‘appropriated’ by the Appropriations Committees of the House and Senate. Each committee has various subcommittees which deal with defence matters. These are the Subcommittees on Defense, the Subcommitees on Military Construction, Veterans Affairs, and Related Agencies and the Subcommittees on Energy and Water Development. Upon receipt of the President’s budget request, the appropriations subcommittees begin hearings, in which the leadership of the DoD, military services, etc. are invited to testify. Following the hearings, the subcommittees begin their markup processes. The full committees also hold markups [1]. According to the rules of the House Appropriations Committtee [2], it has the power to subpoena witnesses and documents. It sits once a month while the House is in session and holds public hearings unless it would endanger national security.

The two subcommittees present amendments to the budget and, in some cases, can prohibit certain expenditures. The House and Senate Appropriations Committees work separately on the budget before coming together to agree their amendments via conference committee [1]. In the FY 2020 defence appropriations bill presented by the House subcommittee [2], for example, the committee rejected the President’s $98 billion request for the Overseas Contingency base budget requirements. Sustained and effective influence, however, is limited given the enormous size of the defence budget and the limited size of the defence appopriations committees, which typically have fewer than a dozen professional staff members each to support the 17-19 subcommittee members [3,4,5]. As such, staff attention is usually directed towards the most high-profile issues.

The appropriations bill is produced annually. The White House produces a Mid-Session Review report, which is a re-estimate of the upcoming fiscal year budget from the figures originally proposed [6]. The Appropriations Committees, however, do not partake in this mid-session review.

Formally, there is a permanent security and defence committee in the National Assembly (AN), but it does not have the express authority to scrutinise the budget. While the functions of this committee do not expressly enable it to scrutinise the defence budget, its responsibilities are vague and this would not directly prevent it from carrying out budgetary oversight.

According to the AN’s Internal Regulations, the permanent committee “is responsible for studying matters of national defence and security; the operation, organisation and management of the FANB; border policy and territorial planning; and the appropriate integration of territory in the promotion of economic development” [1]. The responsibilities set out in these regulations would allow the study of defence issues and the operation of the FANB to include budgetary scrutiny. However, there is no formal mandate for this.

The constitution grants the National Assembly the formal power to scrutinise legislation [2]. Therefore, while the commission may follow up on its asessments, it does not have the power to call for or make decisions regarding budgetary control. In order to summon a defence sector official, the defence committee must request authorisation from the National Assembly’s Board of Directors [1].

This indicator is marked ‘Not Applicable’. The Committee lacks formal powers to scrutinise the defence budget. The Security and Defence Committee has no influence on the budget for the defence sector, given that it has no formal authority to scrutinise the budget, and given the wider political crisis in which the National Assembly has been disqualified by the executive [1, 2].

According to consulted experts, the country’s current political situation has shown sharp deterioration in terms of the oversight of defence matters that can be exercised by the Committee and by the AN in general. However, previous years also experienced problems with access to information, which was limited with regard to the budget and committee member acquisitions [3].

There is a Committee on Defence, Security and Home Affairs that provides general oversight over all the security institutions in Zimbabwe, including budget scrutiny. However, the budgets for security institutions are not detailed enough for the committee to scrutinise all expenditure lines [1, 2]. In practice, the committee lacks the powers to request specific expenditure lines from security and defence institutions, even though the Constitution gives them this power [3, 4].

The committee reviews the defence budget but fails to take advantage of its formal powers of scrutiny [1]. The committee has fewer powers than the Ministry of Defence and the military commanders who develop the budget and presents it for consolidation by the Ministry of Finance. The defence committee has the constitutional and statutory powers to scrutinise the defence budget, but this is overshadowed by the influence of the defence command structures and the Ministry of Defence [2].

Country Sort by Country 13a. Formal rights Sort By Subindicator 13b. Influence on decision-making Sort By Subindicator
Albania 100 / 100 25 / 100
Algeria 0 / 100 NA
Angola 25 / 100 0 / 100
Argentina 0 / 100 NA
Armenia 75 / 100 50 / 100
Australia 100 / 100 50 / 100
Azerbaijan 0 / 100 0 / 100
Bahrain 0 / 100 NA
Bangladesh 25 / 100 0 / 100
Belgium 100 / 100 100 / 100
Bosnia and Herzegovina 0 / 100 0 / 100
Botswana 50 / 100 0 / 100
Brazil 100 / 100 25 / 100
Burkina Faso 50 / 100 50 / 100
Cameroon 0 / 100 0 / 100
Canada 100 / 100 25 / 100
Chile 50 / 100 50 / 100
China 0 / 100 NA
Colombia 100 / 100 25 / 100
Cote d'Ivoire 50 / 100 50 / 100
Denmark 100 / 100 75 / 100
Egypt 0 / 100 NA
Estonia 100 / 100 100 / 100
Finland 100 / 100 100 / 100
France 75 / 100 75 / 100
Germany 100 / 100 100 / 100
Ghana 100 / 100 25 / 100
Greece 50 / 100 0 / 100
Hungary 100 / 100 50 / 100
India 100 / 100 50 / 100
Indonesia 100 / 100 50 / 100
Iran 0 / 100 NA
Iraq 50 / 100 25 / 100
Israel 50 / 100 50 / 100
Italy 100 / 100 75 / 100
Japan 100 / 100 50 / 100
Jordan 0 / 100 NA
Kenya 100 / 100 50 / 100
Kosovo 50 / 100 0 / 100
Kuwait 75 / 100 0 / 100
Latvia 100 / 100 50 / 100
Lebanon 25 / 100 25 / 100
Lithuania 100 / 100 75 / 100
Malaysia 50 / 100 NA
Mali 100 / 100 25 / 100
Mexico 75 / 100 0 / 100
Montenegro 100 / 100 25 / 100
Morocco 0 / 100 NA
Myanmar 50 / 100 25 / 100
Netherlands 100 / 100 100 / 100
New Zealand 100 / 100 75 / 100
Niger 50 / 100 0 / 100
Nigeria 50 / 100 50 / 100
North Macedonia 50 / 100 50 / 100
Norway 100 / 100 100 / 100
Oman 0 / 100 NA
Palestine 0 / 100 NA
Philippines 50 / 100 50 / 100
Poland 50 / 100 50 / 100
Portugal 50 / 100 0 / 100
Qatar 0 / 100 NA
Russia 100 / 100 0 / 100
Saudi Arabia 0 / 100 NA
Serbia 100 / 100 0 / 100
Singapore 50 / 100 25 / 100
South Africa 100 / 100 25 / 100
South Korea 100 / 100 100 / 100
South Sudan 100 / 100 NEI
Spain 75 / 100 50 / 100
Sudan 0 / 100 NA
Sweden 100 / 100 100 / 100
Switzerland 100 / 100 100 / 100
Taiwan 75 / 100 50 / 100
Tanzania 50 / 100 50 / 100
Thailand 50 / 100 0 / 100
Tunisia 100 / 100 25 / 100
Turkey 50 / 100 0 / 100
Uganda 50 / 100 50 / 100
Ukraine 100 / 100 50 / 100
United Arab Emirates 0 / 100 NA
United Kingdom 100 / 100 50 / 100
United States 100 / 100 75 / 100
Venezuela 0 / 100 NA
Zimbabwe 50 / 100 25 / 100

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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