Mutual Accountability Framework for Development Cooperation between the Government of Canada and the Government of the Philippines, 2015-2020

The Government of Canada (Canada) and the Government of the Philippines (Philippines) hereinafter referred to as the “Participants”, reaffirm:

Their mutual desire for effective, transparent, accountable, and sustainable cooperation;

That Canada and the Philippines share a long and dynamic history of bilateral cooperation, spanning mutual and growing interests in democratic development, rule of law, promotion and protection of human rights, trade and investment, defence and security cooperation, development cooperation, humanitarian assistance, immigration, and people-to-people linkages;

That Canada’s official development cooperation with the Philippines began in 1986 and that a General Agreement on Development Cooperation was signed in 1987;

That in June 2014, the Philippines was designated as one of Canada’s 25 countries of focus for international development efforts;

That the bilateral relationship is complemented by punctual humanitarian assistance offered by Canada in response to natural disasters or to populations affected by conflict;

That the Participants have a mutual interest in ensuring a stable, secure, and democratic future for the Philippines, including through social and economic development;

That the Participants have a mutual interest in reducing poverty in the Philippines, with a particular attention to marginalized and vulnerable communities, women and youth;

That the Participants recognize that fostering sustainable cooperation and constructive policy dialogue, strengthening democratic institutions and national systems, promoting citizens’ participation and an enabling environment for civil society, and respect for human rights are key to improving the quality of life of all Filipinos in a tangible and sustainable manner;

That the Participants recognize the important role played by other development actors for effective development results, such as the private sector, civil society organizations and the public at large, in contributing to inclusive, gender-responsive and sustainable development;

The Participants’ interests in identifying clear measures, principles, and commitments that will help to strengthen cooperation between them and to ensure transparent, effective and accountable implementation of Canada’s international development cooperation program, in line with the national development plans of the Philippines.

The Participants have reached the following understanding:

  1. Objective

    This Mutual Accountability Framework for Development Cooperation ("the Framework") between the Participants establishes a shared desire to support broad-based and sustainable economic growth, by making available programs, projects and activities that will create employment, significantly reduce vulnerabilities to poverty, and improve the quality of life of all Filipinos.

  2. Designated Authorities

    Canada Designates the Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade, and Development (DFATD) and the Philippines designates the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) to implement this Framework on their behalf,

  3. Principles

    Shared Principles

    • The Participants share mutual interest in pursuing development cooperation programs that contribute to achieving inclusive growth, through building economic foundations, growing businesses and investing in people.
    • The Participants share mutual interest to obtain and deliver real development results by aligning and tailoring the development cooperation objectives and programs with those of the Philippine development agenda, as reflected in the Philippine Development Plan.
    • The Participants subscribe to aid effectiveness principles, including national ownership, alignment of donor priorities with those of partner countries, and donor harmonization.  Respect for these principles, as well as the application of results-based management and mutual accountability, will pave the way to stronger and more sustainable development.
    • The Participants will enhance the effectiveness of official development assistance (ODA) extended to the Philippines by exerting efforts to harmonize and collaborate with other development partners.
    • The Participants recognize the value of establishing effective development cooperation that supports constructive policy dialogue, promotes good governance, gender equality and creates high quality jobs and poverty reduction in multiple dimensions.
    1. Based on the shared principles of effective development cooperation, the Philippines will:
      1. Continue to put in place development strategies and policies, and prioritize plans, programs and activities, aimed at reducing poverty, achieving inclusive growth and disaster resilience, while recognizing the spatial and sectoral dimensions of economic activities and growth;
      2. Be responsible for the development, midterm updating, and implementation of the Philippine Development Plan, in coordination with various stakeholders.  Furthermore, the Philippines is responsible for the implementation, coordination, and monitoring of national sectoral priorities and development programs as reflected in the PDP.  Coordination and harmonization of ODA extended to the Philippines will likewise be led by the Philippines;
      3. Safeguard peace and promote free, credible and democratic political processes, independence of the judiciary, rule of law, respect for human rights, transparency and probity in public life, including the fight against corruption;
      4. Prioritize the creation of high quality jobs and reduction of poverty in multiple dimensions through its plans, programs, and activities, and allocate public resources towards this objective;
      5. Pursue sound macroeconomic policies and political stability in order to fuel positive expectations that lead to growth.
    2. Based on the shared principles of effective development cooperation, Canada will:
      1. Support the Philippines’ leadership in defining its development objectives, strategies, and processes as reflected in the Philippine Development Plan, as well as measures needed to achieve its own development;
      2. Support the Philippines in strengthening its institutions and in implementing its priorities, plans and programs through the provision of predictable international assistance subject to the caveats below;
      3. Adhere to Philippine laws, rules and regulations with respect to the delivery of ODA, and participate in the coordination processes and regular dialogue on ODA programming, to support the effective management of ODA provided by the country’s development donors;
      4. Engage with the Philippines and with other development partners of the country to harmonize and coordinate Canada’s ODA extended to the Philippines in order to avoid duplication and maximize the synergies where possible.
  4. Mutual Commitments
    1. The Participants will:
      1. Be accountable to their respective citizens through their Governments for their contributions to Philippine economic and social development;
      2. Commit to having an accountable, transparent and effective governance to ensure that resources are effectively and efficiently used for the delivery of public goods and services;
      3. Continue to engage bilaterally on issues related to Canadian ODA through regular dialogue between Canadian and Philippine officials, including  periodic bilateral consultations, such as the Canada-Philippines Joint Commission for Bilateral Cooperation (JCBC);
      4. Develop jointly agreed-upon procedures for the timely review of Canada-assisted programs and projects;
      5. Work together to resolve identified constraints and obstacles affecting the delivery of development initiatives funded by Canada;
      6. Commit to uphold gender equality, human rights, and environmentally sustainable development approaches and principles;
      7. Promote and implement measures that will aim to resolve any identified constraints and obstacles affecting  Canada’s bilateral development programs, as  determined during the periodic joint review as outlined in Annex A, which will be determined within 120 days of signature of this document;
      8. Make best efforts to achieve agreed-upon performance indicators and targets that will be determined within 120 days of signature of this Framework and encompassed in Annex B of this document, to be reviewed on a periodic basis at the JCBC.
    2. The Philippines will:
      1. Coordinate international assistance;
      2. Implement, monitor and evaluate progress towards attaining development priorities as outlined in its national development plan and associated programs and sectoral strategies;
      3. Ensure that ODA resources are effectively and efficiently used for the delivery of public goods and services in support of priorities in the Philippine Development Plan;
      4. Strengthen mechanisms to increase citizens’ access to information and bolster their participation in local governance and national government programs, with a particular attention to marginalized groups, women and youth;
      5. Undertake to inform Canada, in a timely manner, of any significant change to its national development plan, or sectoral strategies that are relevant to Canada’s development cooperation program in the Philippines;
      6. Arrange annual multi-stakeholder reviews of progress in implementing its national development plan through annual ODA portfolio reviews, and assist in facilitating substantive policy dialogue among stakeholders and development partners on the country’s development agenda, such as the Philippine Development Forum.
    3. Canada will:
      1. Support the long-term sustainable economic, social and democratic development process of the country, as set forth in the Philippines’ national development plan;
      2. Develop its Bilateral Development Strategy based on the Philippines’ national development priorities;
      3. Continue to support the implementation of the Philippine Development Plan, which focuses on achieving a more inclusive economic growth, and on strategies that target the multi-dimensional nature of poverty across the country by addressing: (a) provinces with the most significant  numbers  of poor households; (b) the provincial poverty incidence, or the proportion of poor individuals to the provincial population; and (c) the province’s vulnerability to natural disasters (floods and landslides in particular);
      4. Based on the Philippine Development Plan, Canada will focus its 2014-2019 Country Bilateral Development Strategy for the Philippines on improving sustainable economic growth focusing on 1) Improving the legal, policy and regulatory framework for gender-responsive, private sector-led growth and investment in resilient infrastructure; 2) Strengthening the capacity of institutions at national, sub-national and community levels for improved gender responsive disaster-risk reduction and resilience, and; 3) Increasing economic and training opportunities for low-skilled workers, micro-entrepreneurs and smallholder farmers, with a particular emphasis on youth, women, and marginalized groups;
      5. Support Philippine development through various delivery mechanisms of Canada's ODA, such as bilateral programming, humanitarian assistance, support to multilateral organizations, programming through Canadian and Filipino civil society and private sector organizations, including in the area of maternal, newborn and child health;
      6. Provide information about the on-going bilateral priorities and projects funded by the Government of Canada via various channels, and results achieved, as per Canada’s Country Bilateral Development Strategy with the Philippines and commit to engage in regular dialogue with Philippine authorities as set out in Annex A; 
      7. Participate in in-country coordination processes and review mechanisms established under the leadership of the Philippines in order to support the effective management of external assistance provided by development actors;
      8. Work with other donors and development actors to harmonize and coordinate its international assistance, to avoid duplication and maximize synergies where possible;
      9. Seek to program an annual indicative amount for bilateral development assistance of  CAD 12 million in fiscal year (FY) 2015-16, CAD 15 million in FY 2016-17, CAD 17 million in 2017-18, and CAD 20 million annually in FY 2018-19 and 2019-20, subject to the following:
        • An  annual budgetary appropriation by the Parliament of Canada based on Canada's evolving foreign policy priorities;
        • Disbursements are contingent on the favourable assessments of progress made toward achieving expected results in operational projects (and may be adjusted based on the degree to which expected results are achieved and operational constraints are overcome);
        • Overall performance on Canada’s Bilateral Development objectives in the Philippines (based on the matrices and table of performance indicators in Annex B).
      10. Inform the Philippines, in a timely manner, of any significant change made to its international assistance program in the Philippines.
  5. Expected Results:

    The Participants understand that Canada’s bilateral development program, to be implemented in the Philippines under this Framework, is expected to satisfactorily contribute to achieving the following results:

    1. Improved, and more disaster-resilient, gender-responsive enabling environment at national and sub-national levels of government for increased competitiveness of key economic sectors;
    2. Increased economic opportunities for low-skilled workers, micro-entrepreneurs and smallholder farmers, with a particular emphasis on youth, women, and marginalized groups.
  6. Review Process
    1. Upon signature of this Framework, the Participants will, within 120 days from the signature, schedule a first meeting that will aim to determine more specifically the commitments to be achieved in the first year, including a list of agreed-upon performance indicators, which will be incorporated into Annex A and B of this document;
    2. The Participants will subsequently meet periodically during an inter-sessional meeting of the established Working Group on Development Cooperation under the Canada-Philippines JCBC, to review their respective commitments and performance targets, review progress made and challenges encountered, and update Annexes A and B of the Framework as required;
    3. The Participants will report to the Canada-Philippines JCBC Plenary Session on progress achieved in meeting their mutual commitments, results achieved, challenges encountered, and lessons learned; 
    4. Minutes/Aide-Memoire of each Working Group on Development Cooperation review meeting will be prepared and include: a summary of conclusions, recommended steps towards continued achievement of results, and an identification of possible challenges to achieving results. Minutes will be signed by both Participants;
    5. The JCBC meeting will be complemented by periodic dialogue between the Participants, which will highlight progress in meeting commitments, and will inform the Participants about specific expectations and obstacles;
    6. If a review shows that performance is deemed to be unsatisfactory, the Participants will work together to resolve the problems identified.
  7. Communications
    1. The Participants will ensure that any communications pertaining to this Framework is in writing and is deemed to have been duly given, made or sent to the Participant to which it is addressed at the time of its delivery by hand, mail, telegram, facsimile, cable, email or radiogram at its respective address, namely:


      Minister of International Development, C/O ADM Asia-Pacific
      Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development
      125 Sussex Drive, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada


      National Economic and Development Authority
      12 Saint Josemaria Escriva Drive, Ortigas Center,
      Pasig City, 1605, Philippines

    2. The Participants may change the addresses by giving a written notice to the other Participant.
  8. Differences in interpretation and application

    Differences in the interpretation and/or implementation of the Framework will be settled amicably by consultations through proper channels.

  9. Status

    This Framework is not a treaty and is not legally binding.

  10. Final Dispositions

    This Framework will take effect on the last written notification by the participants, through diplomatic channels, indicating that their domestic requirements for its effectivity have been completed, and will remain in effect for a period of five (5) years.  It may be extended for a similar period upon mutual agreement in writing of the Participants.

  11. Amendments.

    Any amendment or revision to the Framework will be done in writing upon the mutual consent of the Participants. 

  12. Termination.

    A Participant may terminate this Framework by giving written notice to the other Participant at least two (2) months before the intended date of termination.