Zita Zarina, Relationships between Supreme Audit Institutions and Parliaments, Ankara, 8 November 2016

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Presentation by Zita Zarina, State Audit Office of Latvia, at the SIGMA conference of the network of Supreme Audit Institutions of EU Candidate and Potential Candidate countries and the European Court of Auditors. This conference was hosted by the Turkish Court of Accounts, it took place in Ankara on 8-9 November 2016.

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  • 27 financial audits in 2015 and 18 compliance and performance audits
  • Subcommittees To fulfil specific tasks or to perform preparatory work, a committee may create subcommittees. A subcommittee can consist of MPs who do not belong to the relevant standing committee.
    A subcommittee submits its proposals and decisions at the committee meeting.
    Permanent delegations - Latvian delegation to the Baltic Assembly, Latvian delegation to the Inter-Parliamentary Union, Latvian delegation to the NATO Parliamentary Assembly, Latvian delegation to the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, Latvian delegation to the Parliamentary Assembly of the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe, Latvian delegation to the Parliamentary Assembly of the Union for the Mediterranean

  • Working in a specific field or carrying out specific tasks, f.i., verifying whether public expenditure is justified, deciding whether the Code of Ethics has been violated, coordinating Latvia’s national positions on European Union issues
  • MESC - Mandate, Ethics and Submissions Committee, NSC - National Security Committee
  • MESC - Mandate, Ethics and Submissions Committee, NSC - National Security Committee
  • Couple of facts about PEAC
    Good balance b/w coalition and opposition members
    Andris Bērziņš - the long term cooperation and sustainability of knowledge at the chair level.
    Ms. Inguna Sudraba – ex Auditor General on the Board as well – high standards and expectiations
  • During the lowest point of the economic recession in Latvia
  • SAO Law The Saeima 4 year term does not necessarily coincide with the term of Auditor General and Council member (nor does the terms of AG and CMs).
  • PEAC can act as mediator b/w auditee and SAO
  • reports addressed to the respective line ministry, copied to PEAC + other relevant Parliamentary committees if necessary)
  • Personalities (specialization, previous experience of MPs) do matter (ex Auditor General on Board is a certain plus, ex deputy head of State Emergency Medical Service
    Mutual trust and respect is essential (mūsu algu pieaugumu Saeima atbalstīja, the requests for
    Understanding of SAI mission, functions and methods (longevity of same MP on the dedicated commission is not always a guarantee).
  • Zita Zarina, Relationships between Supreme Audit Institutions and Parliaments, Ankara, 8 November 2016

    1. 1. © OECD AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Follow up on findings and recommendations together with Parliament Zita Zarina, State Audit Office, Latvia Ankara, 8-9 November 2016 SAI Network Conference Developing Effective Working Relationships between Supreme Audit Institutions and Parliaments
    2. 2. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Follow up on findings and recommendations together with Parliament SAO of Latvia: scope and types of audits Parliament structure (incl.functions of Standing Committees) Public Expenditure and Audit Committee Cooperation b/w SAO and Parliament: • Legal framework • Practical cooperation Conclusions 1
    3. 3. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU SAO of Latvia: scope of audits Revenues, expenditure and property of state institutions (except Parliament) Revenues, expenditure and property of municipalities European Union and other Funds Revenues, expenditure and property of state and municipality- owned enterprises 2
    4. 4. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU SAO of Latvia – types of audits • annual accounts of ministries and other central state institutions (by April 30) • annual opinion on implementation of State and municipal budgets submitted by the Minister of Finance to the Parliament (by September 15) Financial audits • SAO is independent in defining theme and topic of audit and auditing period Compliance audits • SAO is independent in defining theme and topic of audit and auditing period Performance audits 3
    5. 5. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Parliament structure • 100 MPs • 6 Parliamentary Groups • Standing Committees - 16 • Subcommittees - 14 • Special Committees (Parliamentary investigative committees) • Permanent delegations 12th Saeima (since Nov.2014) 4
    6. 6. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Parliament structure Parliamentary groups No. of MPs Concord (Saskaņa) 24 Unity (Vienotība) 23 Union of Greens and Farmers (ZZS) 21 National Alliance "All For Latvia!" – "For Fatherland and Freedom/LNNK" (VL – TB/LNNK) 17 Latvian Regional Alliance (LRA) 7 For Latvia from the Heart (NSL) 7 Unaffiliated members of parliament 1 5
    7. 7. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Parliament structure Coalition Vienotība, ZZS, VL-TB/LNNK (23+21+17=61) Opposition Saskaņa, LRA, NSL (24+7+7=38) 6
    8. 8. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Parliament structure Standing Committees Regulated by the Saeima Rules of Procedure Work in a specific field or carry out specific tasks Ensure parliamentary scrutiny of topical issues of public interest and work of the government, ministries, public institutions or local governments, providing recommendations for improvements needed Prepare matters to be considered at Saeima plenary sittings, consider draft laws, proposals and submissions 7
    9. 9. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Parliament structure Standing Committees Meets on regular basis with ministers or representatives of relevant institutions in order to deal with issues that fall within its competence Has the right, without the Presidium's mediation, to directly request information and explanations from relevant ministers and institutions, local governments May use opinions of experts in the relevant field, social partners and NGOs Meetings are open to the public; however, may hold a closed meeting May convene joint meetings 8
    10. 10. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Parliament structure Standing Committees Composition of committees is proportionate to Parliamentary Groups represented in the Saeima (with the exception for MESC and NSC, both having 1 representative from each PG) An MP may be a member of no more than 2 Standing Committees and 2 Subcommittees at a time An MP may be the chairperson of only one Standing Committee at a time 9
    11. 11. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Parliament structure Standing Committees Composition of committees is proportionate to Parliamentary Groups represented in the Saeima (with the exception for MESC and NSC, both having 1 representative from each PG) An MP may be: • a member of no more than 2 Standing Committees and 2 Subcommittees at a time • the chairperson of only 1 Standing Committee at a time 10
    12. 12. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Parliament structure Standing Committees Saeima currently has 16 Standing Committees Foreign Affairs Committee Social and Employment Matters Committee Budget and Finance (Taxation) Committee Mandate, Ethics and Submissions Committee Legal Affairs Committee Parliamentary Inquiry Committee Human Rights and Public Affairs Committee Public Expenditure and Audit Committee Education, Culture and Science Committee National Security Committee Defence, Internal Affairs and Corruption Prevention Committee Citizenship, Migration and Social Cohesion Committee Public Administration and Local Government Committee European Affairs Committee Economic, Agricultural, Environmental and Regional Policy Committee Sustainable Development Committee 11
    13. 13. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Public Expenditure and Audit Committee Dedicated committee to review SAO reports First establised during 5th Saeima (1993 – 1995) as The Audit Committee Transformed into PEAC during 8th Saeima (2002 – 2006) 17 members (9 coalition 8 opposition) Chaired by Mr. Andris Bērziņš during 9th, 10th (2006 -2011), 12th (since 2014) Saeima The Chairman of the Committee represents the coalition 12
    14. 14. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Public Expenditure and Audit Committee During the lowest point of the economic recession in Latvia (2008–2011) as well as after the financial crisis, PEAC was in charge of parliamentary scrutiny of the financial and economic stabilization and recovery, including monitoring the implementation of the international loan programme. 13
    15. 15. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Public Expenditure and Audit Committee PEAC has two core functions Parliamentary scrutiny of public expenditure Internal audit of Saeima 14
    16. 16. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Public Expenditure and Audit Committee Parliamentary scrutiny of public expenditure: • review of the SAO findings resulting from compliance and performance audits • setting timeframe for briefing PEAC on the implementation of the SAO recommendations • assessing the measures taken by the auditees to implement SAO recommendations • identifying problems regarding public expenditure and proposing measures for public authorities to eliminate them
    17. 17. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Public Expenditure and Audit Committee Internal audit of the Saeima: • audit of bookkeeping records, review of expenditure compliance and efficiency audits, reporting to the Presidium of the Saeima • hiring an independent certified auditor for auditing the annual financial statements of the Saeima and submitting the relevant findings to the Presidium of the Saeima no later than 6 months after the end of each reporting period. 16
    18. 18. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Public Expenditure and Audit Committee In 2015, PEAC met 68 times: • 47% of meetings focused on SAO findings, • 34% on parliamentary scrutiny of public expenditure, • 10% on legislative proposals, • 9% on findings of parliamentary expenditure audit. 17
    19. 19. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Example: PEAC work plan September - December, 2016 18
    20. 20. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU PEAC work plan Date Subject Participants September 6 Accepting PEAC work schedule SAO September 7 Cabinet of Ministers annual report - results of financial audit SAO, State Chancellery September 14 Performance audit "Does the protection policy of cultural monuments planned and implemented in Latvia ensure their preservation?" - presentation of audit findings SAO, Ministry of Culture, State Inspection for Heritage Protection September 21 Performance audit “Information Systems in Health Care”- status of implementation of audit recommendations SAO, Ministry of Health, National Health Service September 27 Performance audit "Municipal financial resources for culture, recreation and sport activities" - status of implementation of audit recommendations SAO, municipalities of Cēsis, Bauska, Dr.oec.Inga Vilka October 5 Performance audit "Whether the Society Integration Foundation ensures traceability of the allocation of the State budget funds to associations and foundations, as well as control over the use thereof?" - audit results SAO, Society Integration Foundation October 12 International cooperation activities of SAO SAO, Ministry of Foreign Affairs 19
    21. 21. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU PEAC work plan sept.-dec.2016 Date Subject Participants October 19 Performance audit "Has the process of selling the state-owned capital shares of Joint Stock Company “Citadele banka” seen such shat the state sould gain maximum possible amount of funds?" - audit results SAO, Ministry of Economics, State Privatisation Agency October 25 SAO's role in the improvement of IT security, legitimate use of SW and IT management in municipalities SAO, NGOs, Latvian Association of Local and Regional Governments November 2 Financial audit on 2015 Annual Report of the Republic of Latvia on State Budget Execution and Local Government Budgets - audit results SAO, Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Justice, Ministry of Environmental Protection and Regional Development, Latvian Association of Local and Regional Governments, Lielvārde municipality, Latvian Association of Certified Auditors November 8 Implementation of SAO audit recommendations - summary and follow-up. SAO, Ministry of Finance November 16 Discussion paper by SAO on State owned enterprises SAO, Ministry of Economics, Cross-Sectorial Coordination Center, Foreign Investors' Council of Latvia, Latvian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Providus (Center for public policy), Delna (Transparency International), Baltic Institute of Corporate Governance 20
    22. 22. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU PEAC work plan sept.-dec.2016 Date Subject Participants November 30 The compliance of activities by municipal joint stock company "Daugavpils siltumtīkli" with the planning documentation and normative regulations SAO, municipality of Daugavpils, "Daugavpils siltumtīkli" December 7 Performance audit "Compliance of municipal waste management system with the intended objectives and regulatory enactments" - status of implementation of audit recommendations SAO, Ministry of Environmental Protection and Regional Development December 12 Performance audit "Efficiency of limited liability company "Health care real estate" in managing state real estate used by the health care system" SAO, State Joint Stock Company «State Real Estate», Ministry of Health December 21 Performance audit "Does state provide patients with the efficient ambulatory health care services?" SAO, Ministry of Health 21
    23. 23. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Cooperation b/w SAO and Parliament Legal framework Practical cooperation 22
    24. 24. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Legal framework State Audit Office Law Appointing/ approving of SAO management Reporting – SAO obligations Rights to express opinion 23
    25. 25. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Legal framework Appointing/ approving of SAO management • Saeima appoints the Auditor General for the term of 4 years in accordance with the procedures of the Saeima Rules of order • The Auditor General recommends to Saeima for approval the candidate members of the Council of the State Audit Office for the term of 4 years 24
    26. 26. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Legal framework Reporting - SAO’s obligations • to provide a qualified opinion to Saeima on the Annual Report by MoF concerning the implementation of the State budget and budgets of local governments • to provide qualified opinions regarding the correctness of the preparation of Annual Reports by ministries and other central public institutions 25
    27. 27. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Legal framework Reporting - SAO’s obligations To submit reports to the Saeima and the Cabinet of Ministers: of those financial audits where SAO issues opinion with annotations, a negative opinion, or refusal to issue an opinion of all performance audits by SAO containing especially important and significant findings 26
    28. 28. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Legal framework Reporting - SAO’s obligations • The audit of the annual financial accounts of SAO is performed by a sworn auditor selected by Saeima • SAO submits the annual financial accounts together with the opinion of a sworn auditor to Saeima and State Treasury 27
    29. 29. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Legal framework Reporting - SAO’s obligations After the Council of SAO has approved the annual audit plan, the Auditor General shall send to Saeima an explicit report regarding the planned audit directions (without naming the audited entities) 28
    30. 30. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Legal framework Reporting - SAO’s obligations • There is no legal provision for Saeima to “order” specific audits • SAO is fully independent with respect to planning the audits • SAO does not consult Saeima on its annual work programme of audits • However, each year prior to preparation of its annual audit plan SAO invites Saeima to express their interest in general areas to be audited Independence of SAO 29
    31. 31. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Legal framework Rights to express opinion SAO has the right to receive draft regulatory enactments examined by the Saeima and the Cabinet of Ministers and to provide opinion if: • the regulatory enactments may affect the revenues and expenditures of the State and local governments • enactments provide for actions with the property of the State and local governments • enactments concern resources allocated by the EU and other international organisations or institutions included in the State budget or local government budgets 30
    32. 32. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Practical cooperation Reporting to the Parliament Practical examples 31
    33. 33. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Practical cooperation Reporting to the Parliament SAI audit reports after completion are sent to the respective line ministry, PEAC + other relevant Parliamentary committees if necessary PEAC calls for a committee meeting 32
    34. 34. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Practical cooperation Reporting to the Parliament PEAC meeting Auditee presents its opinion on the audit report, conclusion, recommendations SAO provides additional comments/ clarifications, if necessary Other stakeholders (public bodies, NGO’s) reflect on audit report and auditee's reaction MPs hold a discussion PEAC sets a schedule for auditee for the reporting on implementation of recommendations and for SAO for providing their opinion on progress 33
    35. 35. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Practical cooperation Reporting to the Parliament SAO regularly prepares and presents to PEAC overview on the status of all audit recommendations with implementation deadline during the past year (once a year) overview on the implementation of all audit recommendations within each audit field for a period of last three years 34
    36. 36. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Practical cooperation Reporting to the Parliament There is no fixed formal Parliamentary procedure in place for reviewing SAO reports It is a common practice for SAO to meet with PEAC prior or between committee meetings to discuss the latest audit findings, irregularities detected, work in progress etc. 35
    37. 37. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Practical cooperation Reporting to the Parliament SAO communicates with the auditees on quarterly basis regarding implementation status of recommendations Cases of non-compliance or significant delays are put forward to the Parliament – either within or outside the scope of regular progress reporting 36
    38. 38. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Practical cooperation Reporting to the Parliament 37 • 27 financial audit reports • 18 performance audit reports (covering also compliance issues) • 24 other reports and documents • SAO annual activity report During 2015 SAO submitted to Saeima
    39. 39. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Practical cooperation Examples I. Audit on Prison Hospital and health care provided to inmates (implementation of recommendations in progress, promising) II. Audit (finding) regarding unified remuneration system in public sector (implementation of recommendations in progress, jeopardised) III. Audit on IT management in municipalities (implementation of recommendations successfully completed) IV. Survey of Members of Parliament 38
    40. 40. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Example I – Prison Hospital 39
    41. 41. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Practical cooperation Examples (I) • Audit: Evaluation of operations of the Prison Hospital of Latvia • Auditee: The Ministry of Justice and the Prison Administration • Aim of the audit: to evaluate the operations of the Prison Hospital in Olaine prison with the focus on efficient use of the Prison Hospital infrastructure to provide health care services to inmates • Infrastructure investments - 9.3 MEUR of state budget funds 40
    42. 42. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Practical cooperation Examples (I) Audit findings: • MoJ (responsible for penal policy) has not ensured the assessment and promotion of the most appropriate health care model for the imprisoned and has not taken a decision regarding efficient use of Prison Hospital infrastructure and medical equipment • PA has not created an efficient control system to monitoring operation of Prison Hospital 41
    43. 43. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Practical cooperation Examples (I) Audit recommendations to MoJ and PA: • to develop a model for health care in prisons • to identify the actual needs and develop a formal list of medical services available to inmates, and organize the operations of Prison Hospital accordingly • to review the actual use of Prison Hospital infrastructure and medical equipment and ensure the investment is used most efficiently 42
    44. 44. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Practical cooperation Examples (I) PEAC involvement: • 3 scheduled PEAC meetings with participation of SAO, MoJ, PA and other stakeholders: 1) 01/04/2014 - review of audit reports (“Provision and organization of health care services for the imprisoned”; “Evaluation of operations of the Prison Hospital of Latvia”) 2) 03/03/2015 - discussion regarding Prison Hospital operations, result indicators and costs 3) 23/02/2016 - discussion on morbidity of inmates and review of MP suggestions for improving the operations of Prison Hospital • several informal meetings b/w SAO and PEAC • several on-spot visits to prison and Prison Hospital by PEAC members 43
    45. 45. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Example II - remuneration 44
    46. 46. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Practical cooperation Examples (II) • Audit: On 2013 Annual Report of the Republic of Latvia Regarding Execution of State Budget and Budgets of the Local Governments Auditee: Ministry of Finance • Specific audit finding (since 2009): the remuneration system of state and municipal institutions is not unified and based on equivalent conditions and financial resources 45
    47. 47. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Practical cooperation Examples (II) Audit recommendation to MoF and State Chancellery: to ensure equal conditions for implementation of unified and fair remuneration system till 15/01/2017. MoF initially accepted the recommendation and implementation deadline, however later asked for the recommendation to be closed. 46
    48. 48. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Practical cooperation Examples (II) PEAC involvement Scheduled meetings: - Oct.2014 – presentation and review of the audit report; PEAC instructs MoF to report on progress regularly - 29/03/2016 – review of the progress, discussion on necessary measures, PEAC instructs MoF to prepare official report with proposed solutions by Sept.2016. - 20/09/2016 – review of the progress, presentation of survey results (comparison of remuneration: civil service vs. private sector); postponing of submission or official report till end 2016. - 30/12/2016 – review of the progress and official report by MoF 47
    49. 49. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Example III - IT 48
    50. 50. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Practical cooperation Examples (III) Audit: Software management assessment in local governments and local government educational institutions Auditee: 14 local governments (incl.Riga) Aim of the audit: to verify the compliance and assess the effectiveness of software management in local governments and local government educational institutions 49
    51. 51. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Practical cooperation Examples (III) Audit recommendations (169): - to comply with SW licensing terms, eliminate violations of intellectual property rights - to improve management of IT security and data protection, ensure compliance with the basic requirements of regulatory enactment, reduce the threat to the operation of IS of the institution, data protection and security - to improve organization of accounting and effectiveness of IT management with a long-term perspective 50
    52. 52. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Practical cooperation Examples (III) PEAC involvement: - 3 scheduled PEAC meetings with participation of SAO and stakeholders: 1) 9/10/2013 - presentation and review of audit report 2) 14/10/2014 follow-up on implementation of recommendations 3) 25/10/2016 discussion on impact of implemented recommendations - written communication b/w SAO and PEAC on status of implementation of recommendations in between 51
    53. 53. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Example IV - questionnaire 52
    54. 54. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Practical cooperation Examples (IV) General problem: short term approach to the state budget planning and execution SAO repeatedly issued audit recommendations to the government to ensure that planning and implementation of the state budget is directly linked to the long term state policies and planning documents 53
    55. 55. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Practical cooperation Examples (IV) Specific problem: SAO audit recommendations were repeatedly not taken into account Solution: to address Saeima for help - in the form of questionnaire MPs were asked to express their opinion - whether the state budget is prepared with the main priorities of the society in mind and is it based on the long term policy planning documents: Sustainable Development Strategy of Latvia 2030; National development plan 2020; Law on medium term budget framework 2015 – 2017 54;
    56. 56. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Practical cooperation Examples (IV) Q: What is overall satisfaction with the budget structure, planning process and the information availability for the achievement of goals? A: 33% - satisfied with the process; 67% – not satisfied with the process Q: Does the state budget offer sufficient and understandable information on the effective allocation and expenditure of the budget funds for the benefit of the society? A: 83% - insufficient information; 17% - sufficient information Q: Are political discussions regarding evaluation of the budget expenditure sufficient? A: 69% - insufficient discussions; 31% - sufficient discussions 55
    57. 57. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Practical cooperation Examples (IV) Practical applicability of survey results: SAO could draw attention of the Ministry of Finance to the Parliaments’ low satisfaction level with the budget planning process 56
    58. 58. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Conclusions Mutual trust and respect are essential SAI should gain and retain the respect of MPs – by demonstrating high professional standards, independence and firm position SAI should invest into making sure MPs understand SAI mission, functions, methods and reports («tailor- made» presentations) 57
    59. 59. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Conclusions Regularity of communication (both formal and informal) does matter Personalities (professional background, previous experience of MPs) do matter Flexibility and adjusting to the needs and interests of different MPs is helpful To work with both coalition and opposition MPs is important 58
    60. 60. AjointinitiativeoftheOECDandtheEuropeanUnion, principallyfinancedbytheEU Thank you for your attention! 59

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