Madrid, 28 October 2013 – Within the framework of the Open Government Partnership, Spain has submitted its self-assessment of its open government commitments made in the April 2012 national action plan. Access Info Europe considers that this first action plan introduced by Spain as well as its self-assessment are of low quality and therefore will accomplish little in Spain’s development towards a more open government.
On the one hand, the action plan introduced has only four relevant commitments that will directly affect Open Government development in Spain: The approval of a Transparency Law, the Transparency and Accountability of Official Development Assistance Law, the publishing of crime statistics and the promotion of social networks to facilitate citizen participation. The other commitments have more to do with e-government and with the improvement of internal administrative performance. This is not to say these are bad policies, but they do not go far enough in pushing towards open government in Spain. It is very important to highlight that that these problems would have been settled if the Spanish government would have held a public consultation of its action plan as the Open Government Partnership requested.
On the other hand, the self-evaluation that the government carried out about its own action plan is too optimistic, taking for accomplished some commitments that while are in the development stage are not yet implemented, and by considering policies that have nothing to do with open government.
It is worth mentioning that as what happened in the public consultation for the transparency law; the form to be filled out for the public consultation suffered from technical problems that prevented public comments from being accurately represented. Now, we are waiting to know if this time they will publish the inputs and the consultatiuon’s result as this was not the case with the Transparency Law consultation.
Access Info Europe would like to call upon the government to create a more convincing action plan towards developing a more open government in Spain by 2014. At the same time, we would like to appeal that a consultation be held for this action plan, thus allowing civil society to work together with the government towards the achievement of the shared goals.