Auditing outcomes contribute to a healthier State finance

Tuesday, Nov 10, 2020 15:12

Publication of auditing outcomes is considered an important task for the State Audit Office of Vietnam. —

Following its accession to the Asian Organisation of Supreme Audit Institutions (ASOSAI) in 1997, the State Audit Office of Vietnam (SAV) has actively made public outcomes of auditing operations, especially on mass media, since 2006.

Publication of auditing outcomes is considered an important task for SAV to complete its mission to the Party, the State and the people while at the same time keep pace with the global trend of ensuring healthy and sustainable State financial relations.

Twenty-five years after its establishment, the State audit sector has consolidated its position and role as an agency supervising public finance and assets through fulfilling its functions and tasks to contribute to building a transparent and sustainable State finance.

So far, the SAV has made recommendations on handling financial violations involving more than VND413 trillion (US$17.8 billion). It has also proposed the revision and replacement of 1,200 legal documents so as to fill in legal loopholes, helping curb financial loss and wastefulness for the State budget.

The SAV’s proposals regarding the revision of mechanisms and policies on public-private partnerships, land use, mineral exploitation, taxation, public assets in enterprises and pre-equitisation evaluation of State-owned enterprises have proved to be useful in making national finances more healthy, tightening financial discipline and improving institutions.

Auditing activities conducted by the State audit sector help not only raise the sense of responsibility and accountability of all-level administrations, agencies and organisations toward more efficient management and use of public finance and assets, but also increase the effectiveness of the use of public financial resources, curb inflation and maintain the national economy’s stability.

In particular, auditing work has played an important role in discovering and preventing the abuse of authority to cause losses to the State budget, as well as in fighting corruption. The sector has provided hundreds of auditing dossiers to agencies of the National Assembly, the Party Central Committee’s Inspection Commission and other competent agencies to serve the investigation and supervision work.

The SAV has made public auditing outcomes using various forms such as press conferences, official gazette and mass media, the SAV’s portal and publications, and on demand, in accordance with the Government’s Decree 91/2008-ND-CP.

The published information includes annual reports on auditing of State budget balance and summing up yearly auditing operations along with conclusions and recommendations, reports on the implementation of the SAV’s conclusions and recommendations, and reports of auditing operations (except for classified documents and data).

Since the revised Law on State Audit was adopted by the National Assembly on June 24, 2015, the SAV has been making public information in accordance with this law’s Article 50, which regulated that auditing reports should be announced after their issuance, except for content designated as State secrets in accordance with the law.

The Auditor General is responsible for organising the publicising of audit reports in the forms of press conferences, public gazettes and mass media, the SAV’s portal and publications, and posting at the headquarters of audited units. This is the legal foundation for the Auditor General to exercise the right of publicity of the SAV.

Audit outcomes make difference

The information made public by the SAV always attracts attention of agencies, organisations and individuals, as well as mass media of all levels, from central to local. Based on this source of information, the media has reliable grounds to launch reports on the management and use of public finance and assets of agencies and localities and violations of regulations.

Some examples of violations detected by the SAV are the salaries at public utility companies in HCM City, the collection of overdue excise duty owed by Sabeco and Habeco, and finances at BT and BOT projects.

As seen in reality, the publicising of auditing information by the SAV is appreciated by both competent agencies and the public, as it allows the public and elected bodies to evaluate the impacts of the State’s policies and make suggestions for suitable adjustments and timely decisions.

The publicised information also puts pressure on audited bodies and competent agencies to correct their mistakes, and help deter negative phenomena in state financial activities.

Through the publication of auditing incomes, auditing activities are also put under the supervision of the public, putting pressure on SAV to improve the quality of auditing.

SAV said that publicising auditing outcomes must contribute to build a transparent and efficient administrative system and play its role in preventing corruption, wastefulness and the lack of accountability in managing and using State budget. — VNS

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