Dimension 29.2. Submission of reports for external audit
DIMENSION MEASUREMENT GUIDANCE
29.2:1. This dimension assesses the timeliness of submission of reconciled year-end financial reports for external audit as a key indicator of the effectiveness of the accounting and financial reporting system. In certain systems, individual ministries, departments, and deconcentrated units and other public entities within the central government issue reports that are subsequently consolidated by the MoF. In more centralized systems, every detail or part of the information for the report is held by the MoF. The actual date of submission is the date on which the external auditor considers the report complete and available for audit.
29.2:2. In accordance with specific laws or rules, an external audit is performed by an external auditor that is independent of the entity being audited. Users of the audited entity’s financial information—such as parliaments, government agencies, and the general public—rely on the external auditor to present an unbiased and independent audit report and to provide assurance that the reports are accurate and free from material errors.
29.2:3. If the government’s financial report is completed but not submitted to an external auditor, then the score for this dimension is D. When there is no external audit, the government’s annual financial statements should be submitted directly to the legislature (which may then choose to seek an external audit, see PI-31). The same time benchmarks apply, as indicated in the Framework document.
If the government does not submit its statements to the legislature, then the score for this dimension is D. The score for PI-30 is also D.
29.2:4. To be considered as a financial report, the report must include at least information on expenditure, revenue, and cash balances and be comparable to the budget.
29.2:5. Submission of individual BCG units’ reports could meet the criteria if their content complies (see 29.2.4) and they cover all BCG activities (i.e., at least 90% of expenditure).
29.2:6. Any delay in submitting the financial reports for audit should be measured using the last annual financial report submitted for audit. However, if at the time of the assessment it is established that more than nine months have lapsed since the end of the last fiscal year, and the financial report for that year has not yet been submitted for audit, the score is also D. If the initial version of the report is rejected by the auditor, or if additional information is requested by the auditor before it is accepted, this will extend the timeframe (consistent with PI-30). The time should be measured from the end of the fiscal year to the date that an acceptable report is submitted to the auditor.
29.2:7. The external auditor for this dimension does not have to be a Supreme Audit Institution (SAI). The external audit itself is covered by PI-30.
29.2:8. In the PEFA report, assessors may wish to prepare a table that provides details of BCG financial reports (see table 29.1 above) to assist with scoring of dimensions 29.1 and 29.2.
Dimension 29.2. Scoring
|Score||Minimum requirements for scores|
|A||Financial reports for budgetary central government are submitted for external audit within 3 months of the end of the fiscal year.|
|B||Financial reports for budgetary central government are submitted for external audit within 6 months of the end of the fiscal year|
|C||Financial reports for budgetary central government are submitted for external audit within 9 months of the end of the fiscal year.|
|D||Performance is less than required for a C score.|
Pillar Six: Accounting and Reporting