Publish What You Pay- Middle East and North Africa (MENA) Region Communique
Publish What You Pay- Middle East and North Africa (MENA) Region
July 28th, 2021 - Via Zoom
Twenty-five representatives of Publish What You Pay MENA region convened online on the 28th of June 2021, for the Seventh PWYP MENA Regional Meeting in order to reconnect, celebrate their achievements, share experiences and learn from each other’s activities and ongoing projects.
The meeting started with an opening speech by Dr. Adnan Bhaya, MENA representative on PWYP Global Council, in which he discussed the latest developments and decisions taken by the council.
Afterwards, participants from different coalitions presented the political, social and economic background in their respective countries, and described the coalitions' situation amidst these circumstances that are still impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic. The coalitions had to maintain the same working approach, which represented a shift to virtual communication, with few exceptions in Iraq, in order to implement the activities in Iraq, Lebanon, Yemen and Tunisia.
The meeting gave participants the opportunity to get acquainted with the diverse activities and projects implemented by the MENA coalitions and supported by PWYP. Participants discussed relevant challenges they are facing during the implementation phase, but they also reflected on their successes and accomplishments.
While presenting their various projects and activities, participants highlighted the constructive collaboration with the PWYP MENA office. The ongoing projects allowed different coalitions to build their members’ capacity and knowledge, and enabled them to develop an approach for more balanced and inclusive coalitions. In addition, they emphasized the projects’ significance in liaising with different stakeholders and decision makers so as to make their voices heard and maximize their impact.
Based on the diverse projects and activities which are currently being implemented, and in order to induce a sense of collective endeavor in the region, the participants reiterated the high importance of identifying common matters and topics in order to work hand in hand on a more regional level. The discussions were very constructive and participants engaged in a debate which reflected a clear and shared interest in fields such as energy transition, contract transparency, and civic space.
PWYP support was deemed necessary by all national coordinators and participants in order to develop such a regional approach based on enhanced communication mechanisms. Moreover, participants welcomed PWYP’s MEL system which helps them in celebrating their success and achievements, and in identifying any gaps.
As a result of the meeting, PWYP members:
- expressed their commitment to taking part in collective advocacy actions and initiating regional work. In addition, they pledged to continue on with all activities despite all the difficulties entailed by the pandemic and the political situation, in order to reach a better governance of the sector and make a positive change in the lives of citizens in the MENA region;
- recommended taking urgent steps in order to tackle the civic space issue in the region, especially when activists’ harassment is exponentially increasing. In addition, participants have recommended taking into consideration topics such as energy transition, environmental disclosures, and contract transparency and address them collectively;
- decided to proceed with in-country meetings led by the National PWYP Coordinators(NCs) to delve into more in-depth discussions pertaining to the various regional priorities identified. Afterwards, the PWYP MENA regional coordinator will communicate with the NCs and convene a meeting in order to have final discussions and debates and agree on two regional priorities which the MENA coalitions can address and work on collectively.
The meeting was closed with a renewed commitment whereby all attendees pledged to continue working towards a world where all people benefit from their natural resources, today and tomorrow.
July 28th, 2021