The Turkish government will restart the process of participating in the Open Government Partnership, after having been found “acting contrary to the OGP process for two consecutive Action Plan cycles”.
Turkey joined the OGP initiative in 2012 but failed to comply with some principles of Open Government, as defined in the OGP criteria. For example, Turkey failed to give an update of its engagements on its National Action Plan. “Countries more than four months late in submitting their National Action Plan (NAP) will be considered acting contrary to the OGP process for that Action Plan cycle. The Government of Turkey has not submitted its second NAP as of November 1, 2014, four months after the deadline of July 1, 2014”, the OGP Support Unit wrote in a letter sent to the Turkish government in 2014.
Turkey was then reviewed by the OGP’s Criteria and Standards subcommittee and invited to participate in a session in March “to discuss steps to fully re-engage in OGP”, OGP said in its blog. In response, the Turkish Government sent a letter to OGP, stating that it would re-engage in the process with clear commitments.
A meeting with civil society to discuss Open Government principles
“We would like to restart the OGP process with full enthusiasm and make considerable progress towards achieving our goals”, the government said, adding that it plans to organize a meeting with “representatives of civil society, the private sector, academics and a PM Office think tank with the relevant public institutions”. Integrating civil society in the Open Government process is one of the key criteria of OGP’s principles.
“The main aims of the meeting are to explain what the OGP initiative is, why we joined it, what the problems we are facing are, and how to find solutions to ongoing and upcoming challenges; as well as to receive their expectations for OGP and to discuss their potential contributions to the process”, the letter said.
The Turkish Government also committed to consulting with “experts on public management, transparency, accountability, and integrity and public participation”.