Government-by-Government Assessments: Bahrain
During the review period, the government made significant progress by publishing for the first time its executive budget proposal within a reasonable period of time. The government published its enacted budget and mid-year budget execution report within a reasonable period of time. Information on debt obligations was publicly available. Publicly available budget documents provided only limited detail on allocations to and earnings from state-owned enterprises and debt of all major state-owned enterprises was not disclosed. Only partial details were available on ministry and agency budgets. Royal court expenditures were not included in the budget. Budget documents were generally reliable. The supreme audit institution audited the government’s executed budget, but only published portions of its audit report in local newspapers. The criteria and procedures by which the national government awards contracts or licenses for natural resource extraction were outlined in law and regulation and appeared to be followed in practice. Basic information on natural resource extraction awards was publicly available. The sovereign wealth fund disclosed its source of funding and general approach to withdrawals. Bahrain’s fiscal transparency would be improved by:
- publishing its executive budget proposal within a reasonable period of time;
- disclosing comprehensive information on allocations to, earnings from, and debt obligations of all major state-owned enterprises;
- providing more detail in the budget on expenditures by ministries and the royal court; and
- making the supreme audit institution’s audit reports available in full and easily accessible to the public.