Strengthening the relations between Parliament and Supreme Audit Institution to improve external audit performance in Western Balkan countries

25.11.2019

On November 12-14, in Podgorica, Montenegro, the World Bank and the Montenegro Parliament organized the Regional Seminar "Strengthening the Relations Between Parliament and the Supreme Audit Institution to Improve External Audit Performance in the Western Balkans" in which the ALSAI participated with the delegation composed of Ms. Albana Gjinopulli, Director of the Department of Methodology, Standards and Quality Assurance, Ms. Edlira Sako, Director of Human Resources and Senior Auditors Ms. Miranda Haxhia and Ms. Jorida Zhegu.

podgorica

The initiative of the organization of the Regional Seminar for Supreme Audit Institutions and Parliamentary Committees on Finance and Public Accountability is a continouty to the initiative held in Tirana in may 2019, organized by the World Bank and the OECD Program for Supporting Public Administration Reforms (SIGMA), where representatives of the Supreme Audit Institutions and Parliaments of the Western Balkan countries identified action plans at country level, to strengthen the relations and mutual cooperation between these two institutions.

Conceived over four interfaces, the seminar explored development situations in the region related to the report and the relations that exist between the Parliament and the SAI-s   of the participating countries, main challenges for the audit and effective financial oversight and it was discussed on cases around three areas of mutual interest to SAI and the Parliament, such as: The independence of SAI, the Scrutiny of Audit Reports by the Parliament and the following of the audit recommendations.

The Regional Seminar provided a platform for the experts from Parliaments and SAI-s to:

(i)  inform each other on the implementation of institutional action plans;

(ii) s haring knowledge of practices and presentations of strategies and technical approaches to strengthen cooperation between Parliaments and Supreme Audit Institutions; and

(iii) r esearch how to maximize the benefits of collaboration by applying different types of audits or supervision of specific entities, such as state-owned enterprises.

The ALSAI representatives and the Supreme Audit Institutions of the countries of the region presented the progress made in terms of the action plan for strengthening cooperation with the Assembly and highlighted areas for further progress. Discussions were focused on the use of a   cooperation memorandum that serves to both parties as a tool of achieving more effective communication, which sets out measures to improve mutual cooperation in order to promote accountability, transparency and good governance in the field of public finances.

While working on the Seminar, participants were given the opportunity to exchange experiences and draw conclusions on issues related to understanding audit reports, through the use of audit products in evaluating public sector performance, monitoring the implementation of recommendations and the work of the Supreme Audit Institutions in planning and budgeting.

Based on the participants shared experiences and conclusions from the Seminar, joint guidelines will be developed, that will serve the Supreme Audit Institutions and Parliaments of the Western Balkans as a guide for developing cooperation protocols.