Meeting of the INTOSAI Working Group on IT Audit, Sydney, Australia, 17-18 April, 2018 and Seminar on “Embedding Data assurance to drive audit efficiency and Quality” on 19 April, 2018

The 27th meeting of the INTOSAI Working Group on IT Audit (WGITA) was held at Sydney, Australia from 17-18 April, 2018.  The seminar on “Embedding data assurance to drive audit efficiency and Quality” was also held in conjunction with the WGITA meeting on 19 April, 2018.

The meeting was inaugurated by Mr. Grant Hehir, Auditor-General for Australia and was presided over by Mr. Rajiv Mehrishi, Comptroller & Auditor General and Chair of WGITA.

The meeting discussed various issues in connection with the WGITA Work plan 2020-22 in the context of next Strategic Development Plan 2020-25 of IFPP. International Centre for Information Systems and Audit (iCISA), Noida was designated as the Global Training Facility (GTF) of WGITA in the meeting.

2nd INTOSAI Working Group on Big Data, Washington, DC, USA, 19-20 April, 2018

The INTOSAI Working Group on Big Data (WGBD) held its 2ndmeeting at Washington D.C., at the Headquarters of the Unites States Government Accountability Office from 19 -20 April, 2018.  43 participants from 19 SAIs took part in this meeting. During the meeting the participants shared their experience in big data analytics in their respective countries.

The Working Group is chaired by CNAO, China with GAO, USA as vice Chair. It has currently 25 members, which are Argentina, Austria, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Brazil,  Denmark, Ecuador, Finland, Fiji, India, Indonesia, Kuwait, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Pakistan, Peru, Philippines, Portugal, Republic of Korea, Russian Federation, Senegal, Thailand, United Kingdom and three observers are AFROSAI-E, European Court of Auditors and Estonia.

5th Global Audit Leadership Forum (GALF), European Court of Auditors, Luxembourg, 26-27April, 2018

The Global Audit Leadership Forum (GALF), a group of twenty four Auditors’ General (including the Comptroller and Auditor General of India), meets annually for organised yet informal discussions on current and emerging issues of concern to their Governments and officers and to explore opportunities to share information and work closely. The 5thGALF meeting was held at European Court of Auditors, Luxembourg from 26-27 April, 2018. The meeting was attended by 39 members from 19 SAIs. The discussions focused on two topics “Carrying out Performance Audits in a political context: what are the limitations” and “Communicating audit findings in a digital world: challenges and opportunities”.  The next meeting of GALF would be held in China in 2019 and India will host the 2020 meeting.

INTOSAI Professional Standards Committee (PSC) meeting, 29 May, 2018 and 15th meeting of the Steering Committee of PSC, 30-31 May, 2018, European Court of Auditors, Luxembourg

The INTOSAI Professional Standards Committee (PSC) meeting held its 15thSteering Committee of INTOSAI at European Court of Auditors in Luxembourg from 30-31 May, 2018.

The main themes discussed were: Implementation of the Strategic Development Plan (SDP) for the INTOSAI Framework of Professional Pronouncements (IFPP). PSC-SC members were presented with SDP project status updates, and there was broad recognition on the SDP’s value, as well as the accomplishments of various project groups. Likewise, lessons learned from implementing the SDP were discussed, and solutions were suggested to help plan the next SDP. The FIPP’s added value to the standard-setting process was also acknowledged. The revised Terms of Reference (ToR) for the FIPP was approved, as well as the number of members, which, including the Chair, stands at sixteen. The revised ToR also clarifies member qualifications and the selection process for the FIPP Chair. PSC-SC also approved the process to develop the IFPP’s next SDP.

The next PSC Steering Committee meeting will be held in Luxembourg.

Task Force on INTOSAI Auditor Professionalization, Stockholm, Sweden, 18-19 June, 2018

The 2ndAnnual meetings of the Task Force on INTOSAI Auditor Professionalization was held in Stockholm, from 18-19 June, 2018. Task Force on INTOSAI Auditor Professionalization (TFIAP) was created at the XII INCOSAI under the CBC with a mandate to continue researching enabling mechanisms required to facilitate and structure professional development in INTOSAI, and to utilize the competency framework to provide INTOSAI with a set of professional pronouncements on auditor competence.

The meeting saw presentation and discussion on the draft guide to utilizing the INTOSAI competency framework to develop public sector audit professionals in the most context-appropriate way. SAI Senegal presented an update on Project 3 – competency requirements of SAIs with jurisdictional responsibilities.SAI Austria, France, Japan and USA also presented their approach on professionalization of staff.

Conference on Motivating and Equipping SAIs to carry out Peer Reviews, Bratislava, Slovak Republic, 20-22 June, 2018

The Supreme Audit Office of Slovak Republic and Chair of Sub-Committee on Peer Reviews hosted an expert conference on “Motivating and Equipping SAIs to carry our Peer Reviews” at Bratislava, Slovak Republic from 20-22 June, 2018.

Mr. Rajiv Mehrishi, Comptroller and Auditor General of India delivered the opening address of the conference.
In keeping with International Standards of Supreme Audit Institutions (ISSAI) 12, “Values and Benefits of SAIs—Making a Difference to the Lives of Citizens,” along with the emergence of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the conference explored employing peer reviews and using the various INTOSAI tools to measure performance.

The conference, included robust panel and roundtable discussions and focused on three themes:
•    Theme I: SAIs Leading by Example Through Carrying Out Peer Reviews;
•    Theme II: Peer Review Tools to Improve SAI Performance; and
•    Theme III: Good Practices in a Peer Review.
Organized with support from INTOSAI’s Capacity Building Committee, the conference underlined the position and supported global application of peer review as a method to apply various INTOSAI assessment tools. The conference also saw presentation of testimonials and lessons learned on peer review tools.

Regions Coordination Platform Meeting, Oslo, Norway, 25-27 June, 2018

The first International Organization of Supreme Audit Institutions (INTOSAI)-Region Coordination Platform meeting was held in Oslo, Norway from 25-27 June, 2018. This platform provides INTOSAI with a single point of contact for all INTOSAI organs and regional organizations and acts as a forum to coordinate, consult, explore synergies and align INTOSAI efforts to support the successful implementation of the INTOSAI Strategic Plan 2017-2022.
The Coordination Platform aims to identify, elevate and discuss crucial issues that impact the INTOSAI community. The meeting highlighted several INTOSAI-wide topics, programs. More than 60 delegates and INTOSAI organ executives took part in this meeting. Mr. Rajiv Mehrishi, CAG of India and Chair of Goal -3 of INTOSAI, Knowledge Sharing and Knowledge Services Committee presented the opening brief at the meeting.

CAROSAI 30th Anniversary Conference in Jamaica, 15-17 August, 2018

The Secretary General of CAROSAI and Auditor General of Jamaica, Pamela Monroe Ellis, hosted the 30th anniversary conference in Kingston, Jamaica, from 15 to 17 August 2018 on the theme “Building the future on the foundation of the past”.
The topic for the first day was “Towards more Accountability” which had presentations and the discussions moderated by the IDI. These addressed the importance of, the need for and the value of independence of SAI. The government representatives, who participated as speakers, were unanimous in their view that independent SAIs play a decisive role in ensuring enhanced accountability and transparency.
They also agreed unanimously that, in the 21st century, SAIs should be more vigorous in raising awareness of their value and benefits for governments and citizens, in the spirit of the motto “break the silence”. This would help them to generate a better and wider acceptance and understanding of government audit.
The topic for the second day was “Acting in the Public’s Interest: A SAI’s Response” which covered the following five topics: “SAIs Fighting Corruption”, “SDG Programme and Cross Cutting Audits – Sharing of Experiences”, “Strengthening the Foundation for Future Relevance”, “Generation Next – Managing Talent in the Public Sector” and “Institutional Strengthening for the SAI of the Future”. All topics were considered from the specific viewpoint of CAROSAI.

10th KSC Steering Committee meeting, Kampala, Uganda, 20-22 August, 2018

The 10th meeting of the Steering Committee (SC) of the INTOSAI on Knowledge Sharing and Knowledge services was held in Kampala, Uganda from 20-22 August, 2018. The meeting was presided over by SAI India and Chair of KSC.

The Working Groups and the Research Groups presented their progress reports and their reporting Dash boards in the meeting which would form the basis for the Goal-3 report to be presented at the 71st meeting of the INTOSAI Governing Board to be held in Moscow.

The meeting also saw presentations from the observers of KSC Steering Committee; INTOSAI General Secretariat, INTOSAI Development Initiative and Professional Standards Committee on the activities undertaken by them in the past year. PSC also made a presentation on Goal Chairs Collaborative efforts since last KSC SC meeting. IDI also made a presentation on the KSC-IDI Cooperative Audit Programme on SDGs.

SAI France during the presentation of the progress report on Working Group on Value and Benefit of SAIs also briefed the members on the revised proposal under SDP on Jurisdictional SAIs.

The meeting included five discussion sessions on the following topics; Strategic Development Plan of IFPP, INTOSAI Community Portal, Emerging Issues, Engagement with Regions and Stakeholder engagement. The members were briefed about the Quality Assurance paper on the non-IFPP documents.

Apart from the above topics, issues related to the reporting dashboard of KSC and Financial matters related to utilization of Goal chair allocation was also discussed in the meeting.

The members were also briefed about the features of the INTOSAI Community Portal and encouraged to use it to its fullest measure and also promote the portal among the members of the Working Groups. The members were urged to utilize features like Communities of Practice, Video Conferencing and Webinars as an effective tool for sharing knowledge and experiences on specific subject matters. The SC acknowledged the potentialities of the INTOSAI Community Portal and agreed on taking measures to advocate its usage.

The Discussion sessions on Regions and Stakeholders engagement were chaired by SAI Uganda and SAI Indonesia respectively. Discussions were held on how to improve the present reporting dashboard especially in the light of Performance and Accountability Report of PFAC seeking accomplishments of KSC, the possibility of quantifying the activities and impact. The members were also requested to provide ideas for the next Work Plan of KSC (2020-22). There was a general view that the focus could shift to knowledge sharing and knowledge services activities in view of considerable guidance and pronouncements already in place. The members were also advised to explore the option of creating Global training facility for the Working Group for capacity development activities.

Finally, the members were briefed about the two-tier certification of the products that are developed outside Due process. The members were requested to provide the details of non-IFPP documents alongwith the QA levels by September 2018.

The Venue for the 11th KSC Steering Committee Meeting is Manila, Philippines and for 12th KSC SC meeting is China.

Joint Capacity Building Committee (CBC) and INTOSAI-Donor Steering Committee (IDSC) meeting, Kuwait, 3-6 September, 2018

The themes of the 2018 International Organization of Supreme Audit Institutions (INTOSAI) joint Capacity Building Committee (CBC) and INTOSAI-Donor Steering Committee (IDSC) meeting was “Inspiring and Encouraging One Another,” “Putting Our People First,” and “Forward Together”.

The event saw presentations and discussions on the latest Global SAI Stocktaking Report, analyzing human resource management dimensions, brainstorming staff training methods, peer-to-peer cooperation, and seeking different perspectives on capacity development.

Keynote speaker, Mr. Jens Wandel, Special Advisor to the United Nations Secretary General, laid out several aspects to strengthening human capital, including increasing staff engagement and building trust. He emphasized that building in-house change capacity was crucial to navigating external threats and opportunities and stressed that effective employee on-boarding positively impacts productivity.

15th Policy, Finance and Administration Committee (PFAC) meeting in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, 7 September, 2018

The General Auditing Bureau (GAB) of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia hosted the International Organization of Supreme Audit Institutions’ (INTOSAI) 15thPolicy, Finance and Administration Committee (PFAC) meeting in Riyadh, where members came together for the committee’s annual meeting.

Dr. Hussam Alangari, GAB President, welcomed participants to the September 2018 meeting, which included the Governing Board’s Chair (United Arab Emirates) and First Vice-Chair (Russian Federation); INTOSAI Goal Chairs: Professional Standards Committee (Brazil), Capacity Building Committee (South Africa) and Knowledge Sharing Committee (India); General Secretariat (Austria); immediate past Chair of the Governing Board (China); Chair of the INTOSAI Development Initiative (IDI) (Norway); and the head of the SAI responsible for the International Journal of Government Auditing (IJGA) (U.S. GAO)—all of whom Dr. Alangari commended for steadfast, continued contributions.

In her report, Dr. Margit Kraker, INTOSAI General Secretariat, touched on three main issues: draft INTOSAI Financial Regulations and Rules; draft INTOSAI Statutes; and INTOSAI financial matters, including 2016-2017 financial statements, actual 2018 budget performance, and the proposed budget for 2020–2022.

Mr. Victor Hart, representing the Professional Standards Committee (PSC), presented PSC progress in 2018 and elaborated on various strategic objectives and actions taken. Chairman of INTOSAI’s Capacity Building Committee (CBC) and Auditor General of South Africa, Mr. Kimi Makwetu, highlighted the enhanced cooperation among all INTOSAI goal chairs. Mr. Andrew Langstich, representing the Knowledge Sharing Committee (KSC), provided a summary report on the KSC’s latest meeting held in Kampala, Uganda, in August.

GAB’s Dr. Mohammed Alhabib provided an overview of recent PFAC activities and presented the first ever INTOSAI Performance and Accountability Report (PAR)—seeking the committee’s recommendation to submit the PAR to the GB in November.

Dr. Al Amimi updated participants on the Supervisory Committee on Emerging Issues (SCEI), where he underscored the committee’s goal to canvas INTOSAI membership (through the KSC portal) to further identify emerging issues and provide progress feedback prior to the committee’s submission to the INTOSAI GB. Mr. Dodaro suggested creating a new INTOSAI working group to focus on emerging issues related to Science and Technology and potential implications for audit professionals. Updates on IDI and the INTOSAI Journal of Government Auditing closed out the PFAC meeting. IDI’s Mr. Martin Aldcroft discussed the organization’s strategic priorities, including strategic shifts to increase impact and sustainability. As the IJGA President, Mr. James-Christian Blockwood, Managing Director of GAO’s Strategic Planning and External Liaison Office, briefed PFAC members on the Journal’s latest modernization plans and initiatives, including the launch of the redesigned website, which provides a more responsive and engaging user experience. The PFAC meeting approved the first ever INTOSAI Performance and Accountability Report that highlights key issues for INTOSAI Governing Board consideration.

SDG event held by the Austrian Court of Audit, 25 September, 2018

On 25 September 2018, the Austrian Court of Audit (ACA) and the Austrian Ombudsman Board (AOB) organized a joint symposium entitled “Good Public Administration and Benefits for Citizens – the Role of Parliamentary Control Bodies”. The event was held in the framework of the Austrian Presidency of the Council of the EU. The issues related to how SAIs and ombudsman institutions as parliamentary control bodies can ensure good administration and thereby contribute to the implementation of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) were addressed in this event.

71st Meeting of the INTOSAI Governing Board in Moscow, Russian Federation, 15-16 November, 2018

Upon the invitation of the Accounts Chamber of the Russian Federation the 71st INTOSAI Governing Board meeting took place in Moscow with around 90 participants on November 15 and 16, 2018.The meeting was held under the chairmanship of Dr. Harib Al Amimi, SAI of United Arab Emirates.

The major decisions taken by the Board included:-
• Creation of a Memorandum of Understanding between INTOSAI and the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) to foster the participation of SAIs in the Conference of the States Parties to the UN Convention against Corruption.
• Approval of the Rules of Procedure for INCOSAI XXIII in 2019.
• Approval of the format of the outcome document of INCOSAI XXIII – the Moscow Declaration.
• Approval of the INTOSAI Handbooks for Congresses and Handbooks for Governing Board Meetings.
• Postponement of the decision regarding the application for full membership in INTOSAI of the SAI of Kosovo until the 72nd GB Meeting in 2019.
• Approval of revised Financial Regulations and Rules for INTOSAI.
• Approval of the necessary financial resources for the re-launch of the INTOSAI website.
• Approval of a proof of concept exercise for a Technical Support Function (TSF) of the Forum for INTOSAI Professional Pronouncements (FIPP) and the adoption of the necessary measures. The TSF will, in a first phase, work virtually and a job profile for the collaborators and the criteria for the host of the TSF will be elaborated
• Creation of a section for the work of SAIs with jurisdictional responsibilities in the INTOSAI competency framework for public sector audit professionals
•  Encouragement of SAIs to undergo SAI PMF assessments and to engage actively in such an assessment
• Transition of the leadership in the Workstream for Guides and Occasional Papers, from the SAI UK to the SAI Kenya
• Support of the draft guide on Developing Pathways for the Professional Development of Auditors in a SAI, aimed at utilizing the INTOSAI competency framework to develop public sector audit professionals in the most context-appropriate way, including the recently completed global research results
• Approval of the first INTOSAI Performance and Accountability Report
• Recognition of the current status of the development of the Strategic Development Plan 2020-2025 of the FIPP
• Creation of an interim Task Force on the Impact of Science and Technology on Auditing
• Support for the IDI Strategic Plan 2019-2023 for adoption by INCOSAI XXIII
• Elaboration of a manual for ensuring consistency in content, branding and a clear purpose for all INTOSAI websites
• Updating the communication strategy in the light of technological developments including stakeholder definitions
• Follow-up on the dialogue with the United Nations and other stakeholders on the Independence of SAIs
• Elaboration of a roadmap for INCOSAI XXIII, UN/INTOSAI Symposium 2020 and HLPF to promote advocacy and more clarity on the SDG programs within the framework of the INTOSAI strategic vision regarding the SDGs.