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External donors will further support the Court of Accounts in strengthening its Supreme Audit Institution capacity

  • 25.09.2009
  • 1129

  
   On September 25, 2009, the Court of Accounts held the Vth meeting of the Advisory Board for the implementation of the Strategic Development Plan in 2006-2010. The implementation of the Plan for Strategic Development of Court of Accounts is conducted with the support and technical assistance of the Swedish National Audit Office (SNAO) and the Multi-donor Trust Fund (DFID and Government of the Netherlands), managed by the World Bank. In order to coordinate the activities between development partners and monitor the action taken, the Advisory Board was set up to implement the Strategic Development Plan, which includes representatives of the Court of Accounts, SNAO, World Bank, Committee for Economic Policy, Budget and Finance of the Parliament of Moldova, Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Economy and Trade, Ministry of Information Development and Financial Control and Revision Service.
Mrs. Ala Popescu, President of the Court of Accounts, presented an overview of the current situation on Court reforming, noting that the new Law on the Court of Accounts as of 5 December 2008 establishes all prerequisites for a modern Supreme Audit Institution and the audit mandate of Court of Accounts is adequate to meet international standards.

   Board members and employees of the Court of Accounts, responsible for achieving key directions of Court of Accounts’ development, reported to the Advisory Board on progress, problems and visions for the future for full achievement of activities related to institutional strengthening, profession development, staff development and securing a higher impact from activity.

   In addition, during the meeting it was mentioned that the conceptual methodology for conducting audits is approved, but it will be updated and completed after the adoption in 2010, at the INTOSAI Congress, of international standards of SAI (ISSAI). In order to consolidate the skills to implement modern types of financial audit, performance audit and audit of information technology systems, based on adopted manuals, extensive training of staff at work is carried out, including by conducting pilot audits. At the same time, as the budget spenders’ management capacity will be enhanced and an appropriate internal audit will be introduced, the Court of Accounts’ possibilities to carry out external audits will increase essentially.

   As external consultants and experts have stressed, during 16 months they have seen significant progress made by the Court of Accounts. In particular, the Court has developed a comprehensive audit manual based on modern audit standards and principles and a quality framework, setting up a quality monitoring team, which will review compliance by audit teams with Audit Manual provisions. Moreover, staff who worked with the consultants in the last missions in March and June 2009 is highly professional, motivated and committed to progress.

   As regards "Reforming public financial management" Mrs. Nina Lupan, Deputy Minister of Finance, informed the participants in the meeting about progress in the Project on Public Finance Management in Moldova.
   
   All participants noted that although the project started with a delay, linked to the later than expected signing of the Agreement between the World Bank and the Government of Moldova, as well as making repeated procedures for contracting consulting companies, the progress is clear and it is due to both employees of the Court of Accounts, as well as consultants. Consistency, the original objectives and project results maintain its validity of the initial stage of design. The Court has made every effort to complete the project within the deadlines, but it is necessary to expand the implementation period to achieve better progress in implementation.
The Advisory Board supported the decision of the Court Plenary to extend the World Bank project for 18 months and move to a new stage of institutional collaboration with SNAO.

   Donor representatives and participants in the meeting of the Board confirmed their willingness to cooperate further with the Court of Accounts, focusing on strengthening external public audit quality and professional capacity. The Board required the parties’ experts to prepare in the shortest time possible, the documents necessary to institutionalize cooperation in the future.

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