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Reform of Public Service Underway
Source: http://www.cyprus-mail.com/british-experts/reform-public-service-underway/20130523
Source Date: Thursday, May 23, 2013
Focus: ICT for MDGs, Internet Governance
Country: Cyprus
Created: May 28, 2013

A team of World Bank and British experts are on the island to support the reform of public administration, the commissioner for civil service reform Emanuella Moushioutta Lambrianidou has said. 

The team of experts are to follow the Cyprus authorities’ reform policy to guide a plan for reforms and support their implementation, Lambrianidou said according to online news portal Sigmalive. 

A British High Commission spokesperson confirmed at their end that two UK experts have been on the island to see what technical assistance they could offer but added that talks are at initial stage. 

Cyprus has agreed to reform its public administration in the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) agreed with its international lenders as part of a €10 billion bailout. 

The MoU terms state that “authorities will commission an independent external review of possible further reforms of the public administration”. 

The first part of a review is expected by March next year and authorities are expected to pass agreed reforms to parliament by June next year at the latest. 

The MoU states this will include an examination of the organisational structure, size and staffing of “relevant ministries, services and independent authorities”; “the possibility of abolishing or merging/ consolidating Non-profit Organisations/ Companies and publicly owned enterprises; and the “re-organisation/re-structuring of local government.”

By the end of next year at the latest, parliament is expected to pass through agreed reforms based on the second part of a review that needs to be completed by September. This relates to wages and working conditions of civil servants, including holidays, sick leave and maternity leave and working times “in relation to the private sector and to other EU countries and based on best practices". Additionally, Cyprus authorities are expected to submit to parliament a new performance-based system in the public sector, linking performance with wages and raises, and using it for the purposes of promotion and staff development. 

Lambrianidou’s office is expected to present a modernisation master plan by the end of July on a broad mandate to simplify structures and procedures, restructure services, modernise the appraisal system for state officials and introduce e-government. Her mandate also includes reducing expenses, set quantifiable goals per ministries to evaluate quality and efficiency of services as well as institutionalising public law entities’ obligations and regulate board members’ jurisdiction and responsibilities. 

President Nicos Anastasiades has asked for the action plan’s timeframe by December this year at the latest.
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