Lima Peru City

Decentralization Process in Peru

May 27, 2015
950 views
2 mins read

Ideally the modern state is supposed to generate the necessary basic conditions for its citizen’s wellbeing and continuously improve its own systems in order to improve its citizen’s quality of living. The globally trending prescription to achieve these aims is decentralization and local governance. Several countries, such as Korea, Brazil, Thailand, Uganda, Indonesia, and Peru, among others, have all recently tried to strengthen local governments.

In larger countries and countries with diverse populations, such as Peru, it is especially necessary to disseminate the central government’s power and authority to local and regional governments. In that way, each sub-government can communicate with citizens directly and can serve them faster and more efficiently. According to The Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC), Peru has developed its GDP 5.2% in the past 10 years. In addition, the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) Human Development Index (HDI) shows an increased HDI rate from 0.67 in 2002 to 0.73 in 2012. However, the problem that Peru faces is that the development of the country did not happen evenly in each region, but is rather predominantly concentrated in Lima, the capital of the country and the location of the central government. It would not be unsurprising if visitors to Lima alone came away with the impression that Peru is a well-developed country. However, the country faces extremely large gaps between rural and urban areas regarding basic necessities such as public infrastructure services and in economic measures such as the poverty rate.

The Peruvian government officially began to enact a decentralization process starting in 2002, but as of yet the plan has yielded little meaningful results. Moreover, some academics and politicians blame inefficient and abstract planning as contributing to the prevalence of corruption at the regional government level in the last few years. The root of the problems with Peru’s decentralization process is that the plan was elaborated macro-regionally, without attention to finer details in execution and with no concrete political division. Thus, the government could not provide appropriate training in management, accountability, and transparency for public administrators and governors. Peru held a regional presidential election in October 2014, and despite this is still experiencing a persistent problem of corruption such as money washing, bribing, hiding money, and so on. After the new regional presidential election, the National Assembly of Regional Governments also designated the president from one of the regions in Peru, La Libertad, as the organizational president to represent at Congress in January 2015. After he was elected, he promised that he would try to promote the creation of a regional community of project management for local development and will unite efforts and resources. This mancommunidad envisioned sharing financial resources and “best practices” to better strengthen regional governments. However, since then no noticeable action has been taken, nor have agreements been made in the absence of effective training for leaders and the long-term period of corruption.

Generally the decentralization process is most successful when it coincides with financial decentralization, but this cannot be considered yet in the case of Peru where political decentralization problems have not been fixed and no effective political division planning has been carried out. In order to support the Peruvian decentralization process, international organizations, NGOs and international cooperation agencies must execute projects and programs along with the National Decentralization Council under the leadership of the President of the Council of Ministers. So far the Peruvian government and the organizations involved have followed Act 27783 Bases of the Decentralization, which defines the norms that regulate the administrative, economic, productive, financial, tax and fiscal decentralization to national, regional and local governments. While this is a welcome step, Peru would benefit from the government’s further embrace of the Act’s aims. Finally, a new presidential election is coming up in 2016, which presents a fresh opportunity for the country. This is the time for the Peruvian government to take strong action in facilitating the transition to a new administration that completely and effectively embraces a decentralization process.

Sunyoung Park works for an NGO in Peru on development projects. Her research interests include youth governance and economic development.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

google campus sign
Previous Story

Something’s Rotten in Silicon Valley

manchester united china fans
Next Story

Bringing Football to Asia

Latest from Uncategorized

fox_news_channel_stand

How Liberals Learned to Love Fox News

The interview was originally published in NOVasia Issue 31 and is republished on The Policy Wire with express permission. For more exciting pieces on international relations from the brightest minds in Korea be sure to checkout their website.  Fox News was born from a desire to counteract a perceived bias in the US media landscape. Its recently deposed chairman, Roger Ailes, set out to create a cable news network for an “underserved audience that is hungry for fair and balanced news.” Conservatives since the Nixon-era have consistently argued that major news outlets, both on television and in print, hire more liberal-leaning reporters and that

Donald Kirk – Kim Dae-Jung and Sunshine

In 2000, then President Kim Dae-Jung became the first Korean to receive a Nobel Prize, for his life’s work dedicated to democracy and, to quote the Nobel Committee: “peace and reconciliation with North Korea in particular.” The award was granted shortly after the first North-South Korean summit in June of the same year, and in recognition of the merits of the Sunshine Policy in general. Yet fifteen years later, Kim Dae-Jung’s legacy remains controversial: not only is the success of the policy debatable, but some have also criticized the costs he was willing to pay in the name of reconciliation.
syrian refugees budapest

Europe’s Migrant Crisis – of the 5th Century

Rome was not built in a day, the saying goes. Yet the idea of a rapid “fall of Rome” seems to be commonly accepted: non-Roman barbarian “others,” taking advantage of Roman weakness, pouring across the borders and tearing down civilization, leaving Europe in a cultural backwater for the next millennium. This is an image which easily captures the imagination, and it fits into the general narrative of the Middle Ages as a generally backward, barbaric era. It has unrelentingly maintained its grip on minds, child and adult alike, even over the protests of professional historians who frown upon the use

The Will of the State: North Korean Forced Labour

The 2014 report of the United Nations Commission of Inquiry on human rights in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) laid bare an appalling scale of suffering across North Korean society. Violations of the freedoms of thought and life, discrimination on the basis of gender and disability, and arbitrary detention, torture, and executions defined the lives of a population. A report of the European Alliance for Human Rights in North Korea (EAHRNK) that we published in September 2015, ‘The Will of the State: North Korean Forced Labour’, places forced labour alongside these crimes against humanity.
Bedouin Israel Child

Israel’s Other Human Rights Catastrophe: The Negev Bedouin

The plight of the Negev Bedouin continued as Israel’s Supreme Court recently ruled that the village of Umm al-Hiran would be destroyed and its inhabitants removed to make way for Israeli settlers. The NGO Human Rights Watch criticized the ruling, which also applied to a similar village in the West Bank, with its Middle East and Africa director Sarah Leah Whitson stating “The court decisions in the Umm al-Hiran and Susya cases ignore international law in upholding discriminatory evictions by the Israeli authorities in Israel and the occupied territories”.

Don't Miss