Georgia: Validation of the Country Partnership Strategy Final Review, 2014-2018
The Asian Development Bank (ADB) country partnership strategy (CPS) for Georgia, 2014–2018 aligned with country priorities and sought to foster inclusive economic growth, enhancing regional connectivity and ensuring environmentally sustainable growth. ADB’s program amounted to $1.9 billion, with transport operations accounting for 43.1% of financing, water and other urban infrastructure and services operations for 27.7%, public sector management operations for 13.1%, finance operations for 9.4%, and energy operations for 6.6%.
This report assessed the program successful, concurring with the final review’s assessment. Outputs and outcomes under various projects were mostly achieved and likely contributed to the development outcomes of robust and inclusive growth; prudent macroeconomic management; and reduced poverty, unemployment, and inequality. The CPS implementation was also efficient, and the outcomes were by and large deemed likely sustainable.
The validation makes four recommendations for ADB’s future support to Georgia: (i) focus on regional cooperation and integration; (ii) implement measures to address regional disparities through the ADB-supported program; (iii) invest in education and training; and (iv) support the promotion of information technology-based economic activities in the program.
Note on IED's Country Evaluations and Validations
Using its 2015 Guidelines for the Preparation of Country Assistance Program Evaluations and Country Partnership Strategy Final Review Validations, the Independent Evaluation Department (IED) intends to provide an objective and informed judgement of the performance and results of country partnership strategies (CPSs), particularly in terms of their relevance, effectiveness, efficiency, sustainability and development impacts.
In ascertaining relevance, IED considers not only the alignment of the program with country needs and government objectives, but also cross-sector CPS objectives, appropriateness of modalities and sector program designs, and sufficiency of donor coordination.
The effectiveness of a country program in delivering results is also an important aspect of an IED evaluation. Primary focus is on the achievement of the outcomes and outputs of ADB interventions (and the likelihood of achievement if the program is still ongoing), as worded in CPSs and their results frameworks. These include knowledge products and institutional development efforts.
Performance and results are likewise judged from an efficiency perspective, that is, whether the program was delivered in a cost-effective and timely manner, and generated value for money. It also considers the capacity of executing agencies that may contribute to start up and implementation delays, and cost overruns.
Another critical element of IED's evaluation is the likely sustainability of results over the medium term, technically, financially, environmentally, socially, politically, and institutionally. Further, IED looks at how results led to development impacts. Specifically, whether ADB contributed to achieving the CPS objectives, directly through its sector programs and implementing cross-cutting agenda(s) across various modalities in different sectors and by various development partners.
IED gives special importance to cross-cutting objectives by considering how the cross-sectoral and thematic objectives of the CPS are articulated in the results framework and provided with appropriate indicators and targets; and how the program achieved the cross-sector thematic results. Equal weights are given to the achievement of sector and cross-cutting objectives in the relevance and development impact assessments, in both country assistance program evaluations (CAPEs) and CPS final review validations (CPSFRVs). This aligns with ADB's increasing emphasis on achieving corporate strategic priorities.
In preparing its country evaluations and validations, IED conducts document reviews, consults with concerned departments, staff, governments and other stakeholders, and undertakes evaluation missions. IED has put in place a quality assurance system to ensure consistent application of its 2015 guidelines. In CPSFRVs, IED's primary focus is to validate the evidence presented in the CPS Final Review.