SIGAR Unveils 'Crucial' Contractors' Report

Local engineers, construction contractors, and foremen gather to receive masonry lessons from a Khost Provincial Reconstruction Team engineer. The U.S. government spent approximately USD18 billion dollars on contractors and other workers hired for reconstruction projects in Afghanistan. Photo by: Stephen J. Otero / isafmedia / CC BY isafmediaCC BY

The U.S. government spent approximately USD18 billion dollars on 7,000 contractors and other workers engaged in various reconstruction projects in Afghanistan from 2007 to 2009, according to the latest report of the Special Investigator General for Afghanistan Reconstruction.

The report is the first to compile such information, which was drawn from seven U.S. government agencies hiring contractors for reconstruction projects in Afghanistan, The Washington Post notes.

SIGAR’s report is “crucial” because it maps the data needed to conduct government-wide oversight, Special Inspector General Arnold Fields explained according to the Washington Post.

The U.S. currently has no mechanism that allows government agencies engaged in the reconstruction effort in Afghanistan to share information about the contractors they hire. The absence of this mechanism prevents agencies from assessing the overall performance of its hired contractors in Afghanistan.

“SIGAR made no recommendations in the report, which did not identify individual contracts,” the Washington Post reports, adding that the list will be used to better prioritize future audits into contractors’ work and to more quickly identify contracts that are at risk of abuse, waste or fraud.

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    Ivy Mungcal

    As former senior staff writer, Ivy Mungcal contributed to several Devex publications. Her focus is on breaking news, and in particular on global aid reform and trends in the United States, Europe, the Caribbean, and the Americas. Before joining Devex in 2009, Ivy produced specialized content for U.S. and U.K.-based business websites.