The Unidade de Acompanhamento do Setor Empresarial do Estado (UASE), a unit within the Cabo Verdean Ministry of Finance (MoF) in charge of overseeing the operations of state-owned enterprises (SOEs) and public-private partnerships (PPPs), is leading a digital transformation of its core functions through a range of innovative technological solutions. In October 2023, UASE is launching the SOE Manager, a collaborative IT platform that will allow for the monitoring and evaluation of the SOE sector's performance by automating data collection, processing, and analysis. It incorporates analytical tools for the reporting of key performance information (KPI). These tools, which include dashboards of financial and non-financial indicators, will provide information on both individual companies and an aggregated view of the SOE sector.
The SOE Manager was developed in house, in partnership with the Technologies, Innovation and Communication Unit (UTIC) of the MoF and PRIMAVERA Consulting, a private company which also provides Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems to several SOEs. Data from the SOEs’ ERPs are automatically submitted to the SOE Manager via Application Programming Interfaces (APIs). A standalone Web-based interface to upload data using Excel files is available for those SOEs that do not have an integrated ERP in place. Currently, 26 of a total of 43 enterprises have interfaced their ERPs with SOE Manager. The expectation is that in the near future all SOEs will have such a connection.
The system is embedded within the overall digitalization infrastructure for the Cape Verde’s public sector. In particular, SOE Manager makes use of the Web-based platforms that support integration and interoperability solutions for the overall public sector. These platforms are crucial for ensuring reliable and efficient receipt of data from the ERPs.
The SOE Manager uses advanced business intelligence and data analytics technologies, aligned with best international practice. For now, it includes two integrated sub-applications:
- SOE-BIDA, an SOE business intelligence and data analytics application, accessed through Microsoft Power BI.
- SOE Tabular, an SOE database, accessed through Microsoft Excel.
Two other sub-applications are forthcoming:
- C-BIDA, a PPP business intelligence and data analytics application, for monitoring the performance of PPPs.
- R-BIDA, a regulator focused business intelligence and data analytics application for monitoring independent regulatory entities.
The main objective of this digital reform has been to define a collaborative model between the State-Owned Enterprises (SOEs) and the Ministry of Finance (MoF) to enable a centralized monitoring of the performance of the SOEs, with respect to financial, strategic and operational aspects. The initiative also aims to standardize the methodologies for monitoring the performance of SOEs, including risk assessments, reduce administrative tasks, and facilitate the sharing of data, through centralization and automation of data collection and analysis.
On the risk assessment front, UASE utilized the IMF’s SOE Health Check Tool to assess the financial position and performance of SOEs, and the associated fiscal risks. This tool was fully introduced in the platform to automate and standardize the calculation of financial ratios and risk ratings and to provide data that can be incorporated in financial reports for the use of the finance ministry and external stakeholders, such as the Cape Verde Court of Auditors and the National Bureau of Statistics.
Other features of SOE Manager are, among others: i) supporting enterprise management in enterprise registration and SOE governance bodies in maintaining their mandates – through sending notifications to portfolio managers alerting them to the date of the end of the governing bodies' mandate; ii) strengthening corporate governance by ensuring adherence to standards and principles of corporate governance, as well as to the timely submission of documents—it has the functionality of sending notifications to enterprises and UASE alerting the date of fulfilment of information and reporting duties; iii) managing SOEs financial and operational KPIs; iv) setting SOE accounting standards and policies in accordance with the national accounting standards (based on the International Financial Reporting Standards) and enabling the standardization of SOE accounts and the automatic preparation of financial statements.
UASE and MoF are already benefiting from this important digital initiative. To date 35 of the 43 SOEs are under centralized monitoring (financial, strategic and operational) by the MoF, regularly disseminating comprehensive and standardized quarterly and annual reports on performance of SOEs and producing internal analysis to support timely corrective measures to be taken when necessary. With the launch of the SOE Manager, Cabo Verde as a country will benefit through improved oversight of its SOEs, high-quality data analysis and risk assessments to take early corrective action and avoid fiscal crises, and strengthened fiscal transparency through access to SOE data internally within MEF and for the general public through the MoF website.
 UASE is also tasked with oversight on regulatory bodies in strategic economic sectors, such as energy, water and sewage, transportation and logistics, public works and infrastructure, technology and telecommunications.
 This tool assesses the financial vulnerability and risks emerging from SOEs. It allows governments to identify and monitor high-risk SOEs and helps inform early and targeted interventions where necessary. The tool provides a starting point for an SOE vulnerability assessment and can be complemented by more in-depth analysis of the underlying drivers of financial performance (https://www.imf.org/en/Topics/fiscal-policies/Fiscal-Risks/Fiscal-Risks-Toolkit/Fiscal-Risks-Toolkit-SOE-HCT).