Accounts Chamber of the Russian Federation holds international seminar on the audit of fiscal exposures
The online seminar took place on 17 March 2021. The event was organized by the Accounts Chamber of the Russian Federation by the initiative of the US Government Accountability Office (US GAO).
The meeting was aimed at knowledge and experience exchange between the US GAO and the Project Group members of the INTOSAI Working Group on Public Debt (WGPD) under the framework of the “Guidelines on the Audit of Fiscal Exposures – Implications for Debt Management” development. The Project Group members are the SAIs of Argentina, Brazil, Portugal, Russia and Philippines (on behalf of the WGPD Secretariat and Technical Working Group).
Mr. Aleksei Savatygin, the Project Group Lead and the Member of the Board of the Accounts Chamber of the Russian Federation, pointed out that one of the WGPD priorities is to develop and publish guidelines and other materials on effective public debt management to be used by SAIs for proper reporting.
«It seems that during the COVID-19 crisis and the resulting increase in budget cost associated with the fight against the pandemic this task is becoming crucial for SAIs”,
- Aleksei Savatyugin
Mr. Jason Vassilicos, Assistant Director on Strategic Issues of the US GAO, delivered a presentation of the US GAO experience on the development of the guidance materials on fiscal exposures.
The presentation focused on the work on the fiscal health reports which GAO issues on an annual basis and where GAO discusses key fiscal exposures that the U.S. government faces. GAO is planning to release the next update (GAO-21-275SP) in March or April 2021 on the pandemic recovery and achievement of fiscal sustainability. Copies of the reports can be found at www.gao.gov.
When speaking on the approaches to better recognize the programs that create fiscal exposures in the budget, Mr. Vassilicos mentioned that the improved supplemental reporting in budget documents on fiscal exposures would make information more accessible to policymakers without introducing additional complexity and uncertainty directly into the budget. Incorporating the full costs of legal commitments incurred today into primary budget data would allow better comparisons across programs.
The meeting followed by the the discussion of the presentation and the series of questions and answers. Participants agreed to continue fruitful cooperation, including the work on the development of the “Guidelines on the Audit of Fiscal Exposures – Implications for Debt Management”.