“Budget Promises: Beyond Parliament”

“Budget Promises: Beyond Parliament” is a pioneering online platform that tracks the government’s record in delivering its annual budget promises. 

The platform seeks to answer two basic questions about the promises the government makes in its Annual Budget Speech

  • (i) Is the Government doing what it is saying?
  • (ii) Is the Government saying what it is doing?

How it works

BudgetPromises.Org tracks new expenditure proposals, or ‘promises’, in the Budget Speech which have an allocation of over LKR 1,000 million. These promises can be found in Annexure 2 of the Budget Speech. In 2018, the platform is tracking 38 such promises, with a total value of LKR 149,350 million. This amounts to over 82% of the total value of new expenditure proposals in the 2018 Budget Speech. 

The platform assesses each of these promises, using two indicators: Openness and Progress.

Openness Tracker

This indicator tracks to what extent the Government is saying what it is doing about each promise. Information on promises was accessed through three modes: (i) checks on relevant government websites, (ii) visits to government agencies, and (iii) requests for information filed under the Right to Information (RTI) Act. The openness of information for a promise can be categorised as follows: 

  • Closed-  No information is available on the progress of the promise
  • Restricted- Information is insufficient to determine progress for the full period of assessment
  • Uncooperative- Information available on the progress of the promise required considerable effort to obtain and/or assess progress 
  • Responsive-  Information on the progress of the promise was available upon request in a timely manner  
  • Open- Information on full progress of the promise is proactively disclosed

Progress Tracker

The progress tracker assesses to what extent the government is doing what it is saying. It evaluates how much progress the Government has made in implementing the promises based on its own timelines and milestones. The progress of implementation of a promise can be categorised as follows: 

  • Undisclosed- No information is available on the promise or the information available was unusable
  • Broken- The promise has been dropped or postponed and is not scheduled for implementation in the year of assessment
  • Neglected- The promise is scheduled for implementation but not initiated
  • Lagging- The promise is being implemented but is behind schedule
  • Progressing- The promise is being implemented and is on track or ahead of target*

*A promise is considered to be progressing if progress achieved as at 30 June 2018 is within 90% of the target set for the period. 

In assessing the Government’s openness and progress on each of the promises, the platform aims to

  • (i) Improve visibility of the Government’s budget promises; and
  • (ii) Hold it accountable for these promises

In doing so, BudgetPromises.Org is a novel and neutral basis for public discussion and debate in assessing the government’s performance in fulfilling its budget promises


The information contained on this platform has been compiled from government records, official publications, public records, and information received by filing Right to Information requests. The information contained on this platform does not express the personal views and opinions of Verité Research or its members. Verité Research shall not be liable in any manner whatsoever for any loss or damage, including any alleged loss or damage to reputation that may be perceived to be incurred as a result of the information contained on the platform.

While every attempt has been made to ensure that the information contained on this platform has been obtained from reliable sources, Verité Research and the team members of budgetpromises.org are not responsible for any errors or omissions, or for the results obtained from the use of this information. Users are not authorized to modify, publish, transmit, transfer, sell, reproduce, create derivative work from, distribute, repost, perform, display or in any manner commercially exploit any of the content on this platform without prior written consent of Verité Research. Also, budgetpromises.org is not liable for any subsequent use of the material, whether such use is with or without the previous consent of Verité Research.

budgetpromises.org does not support, endorse, represent nor is affiliated with any political party and/or politically motivated organization and analysis indicators are merely a statistical inference of the performance.

The information contained on this platform is being provided free of charge in the interest of building awareness. There is no agreement or understanding between Verité Research or the team members of budgetpromises.org and any user to provide the information contained on this platform.

This platform contains independent analysis pieces commissioned by budgetpromises.org to indicate and reflect on the trends exhibited in the data. The re-production of such analysis pieces must be with the prior consent of Verité Research.