I.About BOOST A core function of any government involves collecting and disbursing public funds and maintaining records of such expenditures. Budget execution systems vary greatly in terms of their organization, transparency, accuracy, and level of detail. For researchers, the ability to easily access and analyze public expenditure data is key to providing thorough and timely advice to policymakers and relevant stakeholders. For government officials, rapid acces to budget execution data in an easy-to use format is essential for better decision-making and increasing analytical capacity within ministries.
The purpose of the BOOST project is to enhance the transparency and efficiency of public spending across the globe by improving access to government expenditure data and linking spending to relevant results. As of August 2016, the BOOST team has collected and processed detailed government expenditure data from more than a dozen countries across the Europe and Central Asia region, creating easy-to-use databases that have been employed by World Bank researchers on a variety of projects.
In Armenia, the BOOST government expenditure database has been constructed using the data available on Armenia’s Ministry of Finance’s website. This manual describes the resulting database and provides the information necessary to analyze Armenias’s public expenditures.
This document is organized into the following sections:
Part II outlines the Armenian budget structure;
Part III presents the organization of the database;
Part IV provides examples of how to use BOOST through the Excel PivotTable interface;
The Appendix contains the budget classification codes used in the BOOST.
The BOOST team would like to thank the staff of the Ministry of Finance, as well as the growing BOOST user community of researchers and policymakers who continue to provide useful feedback as this project continues to grow and improve. We hope that this tool is helpful in opening new avenues for analysis and providing answers to important questions about the efficiency, equity, and effectiveness of government spending.
Line ministries and other central gov. institutions
Subordinated budget organizations
Deconcentrated offices of the central government in 11 regions (10 marzes and the City of Yerevan)
Aggregated budgets of subnational self-governments by economic and functional identifiers
Available, 2 levels
Yes, GFS 2001
Available, 3 levels
Available, 1 level2
II.Armenia Budget Structure
Armenias’s national public budget is composed of three parts, as shown in Figure 1 below: (i) the State Budget; (ii) the Local Community Budgets and (iii) the State Social Insurance Fund, SSIF. Public expenditure in Armenia is highly centralized with the State Budget (including the social insurance budget3) accounting for approximatelty 97.6 percent of the consolidated budget4 in 2015.
Figure : Structure of Armenia's National Public Budget
Local Community Budgets
State Social Insurance Fund (SSIF – Pension Fund)
Expenditures in the National Public Budget are classified according to the economic, functional and administrative classifications listed in the country’s budget classification/ Chart of Accounts (CoA). The national budget classification contains four levels of economic classification, three levels of functional classification (division, group and class) and one level of program classification (program).
Aministratively, central government spending units are classified into top-level public authorities (such as ministries) and marz administrations; meanwhile, local government authorities are represented by communities.
The BOOST government expenditure database was constructed on the basis of raw treasury data that was downloaded from the website of Armenias’s Ministry of Finance. Data for the State Public Budget (including transfers to local government) and subnational budgets were extracted in XLS or DTA files covering annual expenditures for the period of 2006-2015. A sample of the raw data from one such file can be seen in Table 1 below.
Table : Raw budget data downloaded from Armenia's Ministry of Finance's website
The BOOST database contains variables that correspond to fields in the Ministry of Finance data that cover different types and levels of Armenia’s budget classification. Each variable is labeled with a standard BOOST name that identifies the type of budget classification to which the variable corresponds—e.g., econ1 corresponds to the first (top) level of the country’s economic budget classification and func1 corresponds to the first (top) level of the country’s functional budget classification. A complete list of BOOST variables and descriptions can be found in Table 2 below.
The database contains one variable that corresponds to the administrative classification within the Armenian budget, admin. This variable specifies agencies under which the funds were spent.
Additionally, the database contains variables that correspond to the four levels of economical classification (econ1, econ2, econ3 and econ4)and three levels of functional classification (func1, func2 and func3). The program variable identifies the programs that were funded by the government.
The database includes one additional custom variable: exp_type. The variable exp_type specifies the type of expenditures contained in a particular line of data, corresponding to the following frequently used economic spending categories: “Personnel” costs; “Non-personnelrecurrent” costs5; “Capital” costs and “Other” if applicable. These categories were defined in order to facilitate the common analytical uses of such expenditure breakdowns.
The transfer variable was defined to serve as a filter for quickly performing budget consolidating across levels of government by excluding intrabudgetary transfers.6 The budgets of subnational entities are not on a line-item basis and are available either by economic or functional breakdown. The econ/func filter variables allows to generate one of the budget representations (economic or functional) without double counting.
In addition, the database contains three variables that correspond to different nominal budget amounts denominated in Armenian dram: approved contains the approved budget, adjusted contains the adjusted budget, and executed contains the actual expenditure (budget execution) associated with that line item.
IV.How to Use BOOST
For ease of use, the BOOST team has developed a standard user interface through which to access the BOOST government expenditure database with the help of Excel PivotTables.
A PivotTable report is an interactive way to quickly summarize large amounts of data. A PivotTable report can be used to analyze numerical data in detail and to answer unanticipated questions about your data. A PivotTable report is especially designed for:
Querying large amounts of data in user-friendly ways.
Subtotaling and aggregating numeric data, summarizing data by categories and subcategories, and creating custom calculations and formulas.
Expanding and collapsing levels of data to focus your results, and drilling down to details from the summary data for areas of interest to you.
Moving rows to columns or columns to rows (or “pivoting”) to see different summaries of the source data.
Filtering, sorting, grouping, and conditionally formatting the most useful and interesting subset of data to enable you to focus on the information that you want.
Presenting concise, attractive, and annotated online or printed reports.7
PivotTables are straightforward and easy to use and allow for quick, customizable analyses of large amounts of data. This section presents several examples on how to use the BOOST PivotTable interface for general and custom reports.8
Example 1: Time Trend Analysis Figure 2 below presents a simple example of time trend analysis at the macro level. It reports (in nominal terms) the Ministry of Economy’s expenditures from 2010 to 2015, broken down by the two top-levels in the functional classification. To generate this PivotTable, func1 and func2 are placed in the “Row Labels” box, year in the “Column Labels” box. The values in the body of the table consist of the sum of the executed variable. In addition to this, admin, econ/func and transfer variablesare placed in the “Report Filter” box. Then above the table, in dropdown menu found in the admin row, you click on “104004 Ministry of Economy”. The transfer filer should be set at “Exluding transfers” value and econ/func indicator should have either Economic or Function values.
Figure2: Examining Government Expenditures across Years
Example 2: Composition Breakdown Figure 3 below presents a breakdown of 2015 general government expenditures by economic category and sub-categories for education in Armenia. To generate this PivotTable, econ1, econ2, econ3 and econ 4 are placed in the “Row Labels” box, func1 in the “Column Labels” box. Finally, year (“2015”) and func1 (“09 Education”) variables are used as filters. The values in the body of the table consist of the sum of the executed variable.
Figure 3: Examining the Composition of Expenditures by Sector
Example 3: Geographic Variation Figure 4 below presents a breakdown of 2010 capital expenditures9 by marzes and sectors. To generate this PivotTable, admin and func1 are placed in the “Row Labels box, exp_type in the “Column Labels” box, and year (“2010”), and admin variables are used as filters. The values in the body of the table consist of the sum of the executed variable.
Figure 4: Examining Sector Expenditures by Type and Region
BOOST: A project of the World Bank aimed at enhancing the transparency and effi ciency of public spending across the globe by improving access to government expenditure data and linking spending to outcomes through rigorous public expenditure analysis. “BOOST” is not an acronym.
CoA: Chart of accounts, a universal budget classifi cation used by all state and local authorities in Armenia to report financial information to the State Treasury Service of Armenia. Th e CoA contains classification codes for economic, functional, administrative, and other types of budget classification.
MoF: Ministry of Finance of Armenia.
Appendix. Budget Classification Codes
This appendix contains codes and descriptions for all variables in the Armenia BOOST database.
101001 Staff of President of RA
101002 National Assembly of RA
101003 RA Government Staff
102001 Constitutional Court of RA
102002 Judicial Department of RA
102024 Judicial School
103001 Office of Public Prosecutor of RA
103002 Special Investigatory Service of RA
104001 Ministry of Territorial Administration of RA