The government began signing its first annual performance agreements (APA) with the government agencies for the financial year 2018-19.

Prime Minister Dr Lotay Tshering signed APA with nine ministers, heads of 10 autonomous agencies, Thimphu Dzongdag and Thimphu Thrompon during a signing ceremony yesterday.

The ministers signed APA with their secretaries. A press release from the GPMD stated that Lyonchhen would sign APA with the other dzongdags later.

“Although, the signing of APA takes place after the Parliament passes the recommended budget in the Summer session, the APA 2018-19 could not be signed on schedule due to the transition period of the government,” a press release from the Government Performance Management division stated.

Lyonchhen Dr Lotay Tshering said as most of the works reflected in the APA were regular activities of the ministries and the agencies, the delay was not a cause for concern.

“The APA is a good system of check and balance to ensure performance,” he said.

Underscoring the importance of the successful implementation of overall socio-economic development of our country, Lyonchhen Dr Lotay Tshering urged the civil servants to use APAs to achieve annual targets.

Lyonchhen called for collective efforts to take advantage of the opportunities and to meet emerging challenges through innovation.

He said that certain aspects of the system would be dropped and some new features added when signing the new agreements after four months.

To improve the quality of APAs, the national technical committee has come up with a quality assurance framework through which the agreements submitted by the signatories will be reviewed and rated prior to formal signing with the prime minister.

The framework has been formulated to ensure that the agreements are thoroughly scrutinised and aligned with the national objectives highlighted in the Five Year Plan document.

Lyonchhen said that the Cabinet ministers beginning this month would sign a monthly ministers’ management agreement with him, which would be shared with other ministers for update and monitoring purposes.

“This is for us to know what everyone of us is doing,” lyonchhen said.

To adopt an effective and efficient service delivery mechanism by the ministries, dzongkhags and autonomous agencies, the implementation of a results-based management framework for measuring performances was implemented by the previous government.

The government performance management system is a mechanism to monitor, solve problems and to evaluate performance of government agencies in an objective manner.

Tshering Palden