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2023 Auditor General of Canada Report 4 on the International Assistance in Support of Gender Equality

At a Glance Overall, Global Affairs Canada was unable to show how the approximately $3.5 billion in bilateral development assistance it provides each year to low‑and middle‑income countries improved outcomes for women and girls. When women and girls have equal opportunities to succeed, they can be powerful agents of change—driving economic growth and improving the quality of life for their families and their communities. Significant weaknesses in the department’s information management practices resulted in incomplete or missing project files that do not support tracking overall outcomes against policy goals. In addition, 24 of the 26 indicators the department had created to monitor progress against policy goals did not measure outcomes. This makes it impossible for the department to accurately account for the outcomes of funded projects. In addition, annual reports to Parliament on international assistance captured outputs for only around half of the funded projects and do not reflect long-term outcomes. The department’s poor information management practices, which were flagged in a departmental audit in 2021, also had an impact on our audit work, as there were delays in receiving documents from Global Affairs Canada. It is imperative that Global Affairs Canada act immediately to improve its information management and reporting on outcomes to demonstrate that women and girls are benefitting from the programs that Canada is funding and that there is value in Canada’s investments.

Credit: Office of the Auditor General of Canada 

Date: 2023

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