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CoST Countries


The NMSG Executive Committee of Ethiopia consists of ten members from Government, Construction industry and the Civil Society.


Malawi Disclosures

After a successful launch on 10th July, 2010, CoST Malawi has enjoyed increased interest from various sectors in society. The government for one has shown great interest and has given so much support for the initiative by spreading the message of CoST in various fora; the then Minister of Transport and Public Infrastructure Honourable Khumbo Kachali (MP) spoke at the Engineers dinner held at Mount Soche Hotel in Blantyre and he emphasized the importance of accountability and transparency in the construction industry and made special reference to the CoST initiative and how his ministry is proud to be associated with such a progressive initiative.

Development partners have also given CoST Malawi great support by the way they patronize functions organized by the MSG; the World Bank and Africa Development Bank have attended most of the MSG meetings, the official launch and the breakfast briefings on the findings of the studies. Dean of the Diplomatic Corp in Malawi, Her Excellency Madam Dumbutshena has given her full support to the initiative by attending major CoST functions.

There has been a good representation of the construction private sector and the civil society during MSG meetings and there is a clear indication from these groups that the initiative is greatly supported in their circles.

The Baseline and Assurance studies were completed on 17th September and following the completion, breakfast briefings on the findings of the two studies were held on 27th and 28th September. The briefing on the 27th targeted government officials in ministries and departments, development partners, the construction private sector and procuring entities. Attendance was very good; the guest of honor was the World Bank representative to Malawi, Madam Sandra Bloemenkamp.

The briefing held on 28th targeted civil society organizations and the media. It was envisaged by the MSG that the two groups would be good ambassadors of spreading the message on CoST and advocating to policy makers in government to adopt the principles of CoST and continue supporting the initiative. The common observation from the civil society organizations was that the findings of CoST would give them leverage to push through the freedom of access to information bill while the media called for more guidance from experts in the construction industry in writing their articles to avoid reporting wrongly on construction issues.

Both the Baseline and Assurance consultants made PowerPoint presentations on the findings of the two studies detailing the methodology employed, challenges encountered and the actual findings. The Baseline findings indicated that disclosure of project information is only mandatory by law during the tendering phase but not at any subsequent phase of the project. The findings also revealed that there were time and cost overruns on most of the sampled projects. The Assurance findings showed that poor project management was the major contributing factor to poor workmanship, cost and time overruns. The two presentations raised great interest from the audiences and the procuring entities present whose projects had been studied were at liberty to respond to particular queries raised.

The second round of disclosures was conducted by CoST secretariat at the 7th Annual Engineers Conference that was held in Mangochi from 30th September to 1st October, 2010. This is a gathering of Engineers in the fields of Civil, Mechanical and Electrical Engineering that takes place yearly to discuss the successes and challenges in the Engineering industry in Malawi. The MSG viewed this as a good opportunity to engage the big players in the construction industry and provoke the policy makers into action. The presentation dwelt much on the findings of the Baseline study to give a clearer picture of the situation in the construction industry, the shortfalls identified and highlight the need for increased levels of disclosure. 


CoST Disclosure in the Philippines

The CoST “Promoting Transparency and Accountability” Disclosure Event on 8 October 2010 was a milestone for CoST Philippines.

The CoST Philippines MSG turned over to CoST Champion, Usec. Laura Pascua of the Department of Budget and Management the studies, reports and outputs of the CoST pilot so far. These included:

  • The Baseline Study Report;
  • PhilGeps Enhancement Plan which contains the PhilGeps Business Plan for sustainability;
  • Market Research and Survey results;
  • Cost MPI Integration in the PhilGeps;
  • Assurance Team Engagement Report of the Commission on Audit;
  • Soft launch of CoST MPI in the PhilGeps and the CoSTPhils Website launch.

The turn over ceremony was supported by World Bank, Department of Budget and Management (DBM), Commission on Audit (COA), Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH), Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC), Light Rail Transit Administration (LRTA),Procurement Service (PS), PhilGeps, Philippine Constructors Association (PCA), Transparency and Accountability Network (TAN/CSO), Bantay Lansangan, Consultants and Media.

It is the first event in a series of disclosure activities in the Philippines.

CoST Philippines launch

CoST Philippines was officially launched on 27 January 2010 with great success. The new CoST Champion, Budget and Management Undersecretary Laura Pascua showed excellent commitment, coming early to welcome guests as they arrived, and giving a speech that called on all stakeholders to join and actively participate in CoST to ensure its success. A welcome address from Chrik Poortman, IAG Chair was given in absentia by Manolito Madrasto, a founding member of the MSG. There was excellent attendance across the stakeholder groups including:

  • A number of consulting, constructors and supplier associations, together with representatives of the labor unions;
  • Civil society organizations (CSOs);
  • Most government infrastructure agencies, together with representatives of the Commission on Audit (COA), the Office of the Ombudsman, and the Presidential Anti-Graft and Corruption Commission;
  • The World Bank (WB), Asian Development Bank (ADB), the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), USAID, AusAid and the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA).
  • Major newspapers and business dailies. Interviews were held with the CoST Champion, the MSG and a number of the visitors. The television networks sent a joint team for a pooled report to be aired that night.

The launch comes after a year of CoST operation in the Philippines and reflects the commitment of the MSG during this time to tailor the CoST approach to the Philippines context before engaging with a broader range of stakeholders.


CoST Tanzania is online

Go to the MSG's own website for CoST in Tanzania:

Tanzania Construction industry

Since 2000, Tanzania's real GDP has grown at an annual rate of about 6.3 percent, with the construction industry a major contributor to this growth. Construction contributes around TSh 740 billion (£300 million) or about 5.6% to the GDP of TSh13,000 billion or £5.2b. The Ministry of Infrastructure & Development is the main government body dealing with infrastructure together with the Prime Minister's Office for Regional and Local Government. Tanzania has a number of well-developed regulatory and business/professional institutions operating in the construction sector. The main body tasked with developing the sector is the National Construction Council (see with the purpose of promoting the development of the local construction industry.

The construction industry is a sector of the economy that transforms various resources into constructed physical economic and social infrastructure necessary for socio-economic development. It embraces the process by which the said physical infrastructure are planned, designed, procured, constructed or produced, altered, repaired, maintained, and demolished. Thus, the construction industry is a fundamental economic activity which permeates most of the sectors of the economy and it has a major role to play in achieving social economic development objectives of any country; yet is consistently ranked as one of the most corrupt areas of economic activity in a number of countries including Tanzania.

The Government has been concerned about the problem; as a result has been taking a number of initiatives geared towards preventing and combating corrupt practices; notable amongst which include: Enactment of the Prevention and Combating of Corruption Act 2007, strengthening the Prevention and Combating of Corruption Bureau (PCCB), and financial and public procurement reforms (Public Procurement Act, 2004 and the Public Finance Act 2001)

Furthermore, in 2003, the Government published the Construction Industry Policy. One of the objectives of the Construction Industry Policy is to ensure efficient and cost effective performance of the construction industry that will guarantee value for money on constructed facilities in line with best practices. Such are an objective cannot be meaningfully achieved without combating corruption. Accordingly, it is the Government's resolve to; promote adherence to principles of corporate governance in the construction sector, and to promote measures for preventing corruption in the construction sector by measures that include enhancing efficiency, transparency and accountability in procurement, design and contract administration, and instituting mandatory technical auditing of all major public - financed projects where there shall be suspicion of malpractice.

The above Government policy commitments are largely in line with what is being advocated by the objectives of the Construction Sector Transparency Initiative (CoST) as it aims to enhance the transparency and accountability of publicly financed construction projects; with expectation that improved transparency will be supportive of better management of public finances and reduced corruption.

CoST in Tanzania in has been conceived as an unincorporated forum of members and shall exercise its functions through its Multi Sectorial Group (MSG), Secretariat and Administrative Host i.e. the National Construction Council (NCC). NCC is a government institution which is a focal point for sector coordination of all the institutions engaged in the construction industry activities for the purpose of ensuring consolidation, harmonization and competitive performance of the industry in Tanzania. The organization and operations of CoST shall be guided by the Rules of CoST. The CoST Champion is the Minister responsible for good governance. This structure is illustrated in the following diagram.


Any entity or person who shares the Objectives and Principles of CoST may apply to become a Member of CoST. Generally, members may include national, regional, international organizations and entities, and local governments and/or their ministries, departments, agencies and institutions, non-governmental organizations, academic and research institutions, companies, service providers and practitioners in both the public and private sectors and individuals. These shall form the following three main stakeholder groups for CoST; that is, Civil Society - representing the beneficiaries of construction sector services, public Sector - representing the clients and financiers of construction works and services, and private sector that provide most of the works and services.

Assurance Team

Members of the Assurance Team shall be appointed on a case by case basis and shall operate in accordance with terms of reference to be provided by the MSG. Each member of the Assurance Team shall have minimum education of a bachelor degree or equivalent, relevant experience of at least five years, and high professional integrity


CoST shall solicit funds through voluntary support, contributions and grants from governments, development funding agencies/development partners and from its members.


UK Pilot Disclosure

The UK has taken a lead by disclosing information from eight public sector construction projects. The information supplied by the four procuring entities was scrutinized by an independent Assurance Team appointed by the UK MSG. The Assurance Team produced reports and report card summaries on each of the eight projects highlighting any emerging issues. Please click on the links in the table below to access the information and reports:

Baseline Report

The UK has also published a baseline study which takes a snapshot of the current level of transparency in the UK construction sector. 


A Multi-Stakeholder Group has overseen and guided the pilot and consists of representatives from government, the private sector and civil society. 

Support for CoST UK

In September 2010 the UK Consumer Federation declared its support for CoST. 

UK Consultation Report

The purpose of the consultation was to inform stakeholders (clients, industry and civil society) in the UK about this international construction transparency initiative and to seek their views on the UK pilot with the aim of improving its objectives and design. 


CoST Vietnam is online!

The MSG in Vietnam has established its own excellent website. See


Zambia AGM and Disclosure Event

The AGM and disclosure event on 8 October 2010 was attended by approximately 30 people and included representatives from government, industry and civil society. The CoST Champion, Minister Mike Mulongoti arrived early and listened attentively to speeches by MSG Chairman Reuben Lifuka and George Ofori of the International Advisory Group before giving his own.

Detailed presentations by the consultants responsible for the Baseline study and Assurance reports followed and stimulated considerable discussion. Participants asked questions about the process that was used, the relationships with the procuring entities, how CoST fitted with other initiatives and the degree of support provided by Government. The overall tenor was very supportive of CoST.

The full texts of the baseline study and AT reports will be posted on the website of the National Construction Council shortly.

Zambia Construction Industry

Zambia's GDP is around $11 billion and construction industry activity contributes around 7.5% of that in real terms. The main body tasked with developing the sector is the National Council for Construction (see with the key objective of developing the local construction capacity in the country and seeks, among its other aims and objectives, to achieve the following:

  • Unifying the Construction Industry
  • Promoting the wellbeing of the Construction Industry
  • Striving to create a profitable environment for constituents of the Construction Industry
  • Establishing a united national platform encompassing formal and informal sectors of the Construction Industry and its professions.

CoST Zambia

The purpose of CoST Zambia is to improve accountability and reduce corruption through increased transparency of construction contracts. Zambia has been at the forefront in establishing CoST in the country demonstrating its profound commitment to good governance and best practice in its construction industry. The Minister for Works and Supply, Hon. K Simabao MP, at the CoST international consultation meeting in London on 20th June demonstrated this by proposing that the country becomes a pilot for implementing CoST. This process has now started and CoST's first national Multi-Stakeholder Group (MSG) was formed in Lusaka on 5th October 2007. The structure of CoST Zambia is shown in the following diagram:


The Champion for CoST in Zambia is the Minister for Works & Supply. The Champion's role is to:

  • Promote CoST at the highest level in Government
  • Gain agreement from other Ministries for their participation in CoST
  • When considered necessary, represent CoST Zambia at international forums
  • Appoint members of the MSG considering the proceedings of the Annual Stakeholders Convention
  • Oversee the activities of the CoST Secretariat to ensure the effective implementation of CoST.

An Annual Stakeholders Convention will be an open conference of all stakeholders in the country and reviews the annual report of MSG. This MSG will have the following objectives:

  • Approve Country Work Plan on a rolling annual basis
  • Agree the projects or groups of projects that should be included in the pilot phase
  • Approve the project information template
  • Approve the TOR for the Assurance Team
  • Review and approve tender evaluation recommendations for consultants procured under CoST program
  • Advise National Council for Construction on the administration of the contract for Assurance Team
  • Direct the Assurance Team
  • Publish the findings of the Assurance Team in a comprehensible form
  • Consider recommendations by Assurance Team on whether specific contracts or procuring entities should be referred to the Press, National Audit Office or Anti-Corruption Commission
  • Meet monthly until Assurance Team in place. After that meet on a quarterly basis
  • Report on an annual basis to the CoST Annual Stakeholders Convention
  • Advise the CoST "Champion", the Minister for Works and Supply upon request
  • Liaise with CoST International Forum
  • Monitor content of CoST website

The membership of the MSG currently includes:

  • Mr. Rueben Lifuka - Transparency International Zambia / Chairperson
  • Mr. Boster Chiyaba - Ministry of Works and Supply
  • Mr. Henry Zulu - Office of the Auditor General
  • Mr. Chimuka Nyanga - Association of Building and Civil Engineering Contractors
  • Mr. Watson Ngandu - Zambia Institute of Architects
  • Mrs. Glenda Mungalaba - Anti-Corruption Commission
  • Mr. Henry Musonda, Zambia - Association of Consulting Engineers
  • Mr. Thomas Lwenje - Zambia National Tender Board
  • Mr. Saili Kanchela - Zambia Bureau of Standards
  • Dr. Sylvester Mashamba - National Council for Construction
  • Mr. Lupando Kalaluka - Law Association of Zambia
  • Ms.Wendy Nambule - National Council for Construction / Secretary

The main objectives of the Assurance Team will be to:

  • Assess the adequacy and reliability of project information disclosures and other transparency indicators
  • Identify causes for concern in such disclosures
  • Reporting findings to the MSG.

The MSG and Assurance Team will be supported by a Secretariat (the NCC) that will:

  • Carry out the necessary preparations for the establishment of the CoST Pilot in Zambia
  • Support the Minister of Works & Supply in regard to role as CoST Champion
  • Assist the MSG in its activities
  • Administer the contract of the Assurance Team and any other associated contracts

CoST Zambia Workshop: Lusaka, 29th August 2007

Left to Right: Ms. Wendy Nambule, Publicity Officer, National Council for Construction; Mr. Adam Andreski, Consultant, DFID; Dr. Francis Ndilila, Board Chairman, National Council for Construction; Hon. Kapembwa Simbao, Minister for Works and Supply; Mr. R. Lifuka, President of Transparency International Zambia

The National Council for Construction

The National Council for Construction (NCC) is a statutory corporate body set up by an Act of parliament to regulate and build capacity for the local Zambian construction industry. The NCC is governed by NCC Act No. 13 of 2003, which sets out the role, mandate and functions of the NCC. The NCC affiliates and represents all trade organizations and professional bodies within the Zambian Construction Industry.

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