The Commonwealth Secretariat in London is the backbone of the Commonwealth and the Strategic Plan 2013/14-2016/17 (the Plan) marked the beginning of a new chapter for the Secretariat. The Plan had six core areas of strategic focus that include democracy, public institutions, social development, youth, development: Pan-Commonwealth and development: small states and vulnerable states. Under the Economic Development pillar (5), the Secretariat’s programme of delivery was focused on four intermediate outcomes:
5.1 Effective policy mechanisms for integration and participation in the Global Trading System;
5.2 Commonwealth Principles and values advances in global development and financing decisions;
5.3 National frameworks facilitate effective debt management; and,
5.4 Effective, equitable, transparent and sustainable management of marine and other natural resources.
International Economics (IEC), with funding from the Commonwealth, conducted an independent evaluation of the Secretariat’s Economic Development Programme under the Plan, covering areas that include trade policy support, debt management and sustainable management of marine and other natural resources. The evaluation served both an accountability and learning purpose.