The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria is the major multi-donor financier of programs to fight these three diseases and generally strengthen health service systems. Since its creation in 2002, approved funding of 33 billion US dollars was disbursed for around 1,000 programs in more than 150 countries. In September 2012, The Global Fund entrusted GFA Consulting Group with an indefinite quantity contract regarding financial advisory services. The assistance covers fiscal and procurement agent tasks, financial verification and oversight, internal audit services and the set-up of internal control systems, management assessments and capacity building.
GFA concept and services
GFA has 25 years of experience with fiscal and procurement management services for major funding agencies such as the Millennium Challenge Corporation, World Bank, KfW Development Bank or The Global Fund. This is complemented by innovative and client-oriented solutions based on cross-sectoral expertise inherent in GFA’s technical and regional departments. Moreover, GFA experts excel in both roles of aid management: providing advice and capacity building, and supervising and controlling third party funds. Since 2008, GFA has also provided worldwide Data Quality Audits to The Global Fund, assessing the performance of national monitoring systems. In cooperation with Grant Thornton, GFA has been contracted as Local Fund Agent in five countries in Africa and Latin America. In 2016, GFA was awarded an indefinite quantity contract for the Global Fund’s Programmatic Quality Assurance and Improvement Approach.
GFA’s financial management services for The Global Fund projects in 13 countries are tailored specifically to the respective diseases, implementing countries, institutional capacity, and sector and project objectives. The services comprise financial oversight, accounting, reporting and standard internal control functions adapted to the needs of the funds’ Principal and Sub-Recipients in a particular country. Fiscal agent services are required to assist the principal or sub-recipients in capacity building related to financial and procurement management functions. GFA teams mitigate the risk of fraud or misuse of grant funds, minimize complaints, and increase the efficiency of fund management in compliance with Global Fund standards.
Fiscal agent services take care of all financial transactions on behalf of the implementing entity, e.g. payments compliant with agreed procedures or safeguarding and implementing control mechanisms together with the recipient. Given the specific risk context in which Global Fund grants are implemented, further scrutiny of financial and accounting documents may be required. In addition, existing procedures and systems may need updating in compliance with Global Fund requirements. Capacity building assistance and training on accounting and financial management is a key responsibility.
Experts of GFA Consulting Group and GFA B.I.S. have developed, customized and implemented a comprehensive financial management system for the specific needs of The Global Fund. The fund accounting tool developed by GFA-B.I.S. is an excel file based on an SQL database and is used in all Fiscal Agent projects to ensure data integrity of Principal Recipients' automated accounting. In some of its projects, GFA is expanding the financial services to procurement management reflecting the growing trend to combine financial and procurement management.