Najwyzsza Izba Kontroli

04/13/2021 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 04/13/2021 03:06

NIK as co-author of report on peer review in Supreme Audit Office of Slovakia

NIK President Marian Banaś took part in the official presentation of results of the international peer review of the Supreme Audit Office of Slovakia. NIK - together with the SAIs of the United States of America, Finland and Hungary - carried out the project at the request of the President of the SAI of Slovakia, Karol Mitrik. The peer review aimed at evaluating internal procedures and regulations applied by the Slovak SAI. On part of NIK, the Department of Science, Education and National Heritage participated in the peer review.

The peer review in the Slovak Supreme Audit Institution aimed at evaluating its internal procedures and regulations. The review lasted from February 2020 to March 2021 and was financed from the EU funds. In that period, 2000 pages of evidence were translated into English. Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, most meetings and consultations, including the report presentation, were held using internet platforms.

The peer review involved evaluation of three components important in pursuing the mission and vision of the SAI of Slovakia and its strategic goals: Planning, Quality Assurance and Communication. NIK was responsible for the planning component. NIK President Marian Banaś took part in the official presentation (held online) of the review results.

When carrying out the first component of the peer review related to planning audit activities, NIK conducted a detailed analysis and evaluation of the institutional framework of strategic and annual planning. NIK also verified how the Slovak SAI implemented the annual planning processes. The SAI of Poland positively evaluated the way the SAI of Slovakia developed processes of strategic and annual planning, including preparation of audit subjects and setting priorities at individual stages. NIK also presented relevant analysis and recommendations. The Slovak SAI already in the course of the peer review made some improvements in order to implement the recommendations as soon as possible.

During a working meeting with representatives of the peer review leader (SAI of the USA), NIK also presented a range of efficiency measures, submitted to the Parliament in annual reports on NIK's activity. Examples of measures included: the percentage of audited public spending in a given year (as part of the state budget execution audit), the percentage of implemented post-audit recommendations, the number of developed audit reports and the number of joint audits conducted under the leadership of the Polish Supreme Audit Office.

Peer reviews are conducted in line with the methodology of the International Organisation of Supreme Audit Institutions INTOSAI, especially with the standard ISSAI 5600. To date NIK has participated in peer reviews (or conducted them on its own) of the SAIs of the Republic of Indonesia, Republic of Lithuania, Republic of Latvia, Estonia, Romania, Hungary and the European Court of Auditors. Peer review reports are posted on official websites of individual SAIs.

NIK has cooperated closely with the SAI of Slovakia for many years now. In December 2020, NIK President visited Bratislava, mainly to renew the cooperation agreement between the two SAIs. The first agreement of this type was signed in 1998 in Poland and renewed in 2014. The renewed agreement enables continued, strengthened cooperation and related benefits will foster the development of state auditing as well as the institutional development of both SAIs. NIK President Marian Banaś and President of the SAI of Slovakia Karol Mitrík also addressed challenges faced by the Visegrad Group countries and also Austria and Slovenia, the so-called V4+2 Group. The talks with the Slovak partner focused on the modern approach to auditing, in particular by means of remote work, and long-term strategic planning. The Presidents also discussed the possibility of inviting SAIs of the Three Seas Initiative which associates Bulgaria, Croatia, Estonia, Lithuania, Latvia and Romania.

Both institutions carry out international audits. Since 1995, more than 40 projects of this type have been implemented -currently they are related to cross-border movement of hazardous waste as well as protection against infectious diseases.

The audit on cross-border movement of hazardous waste is a trilateral audit. Apart from NIK and the Slovak SAI, the SAI of Ukraine takes part in it. Each party prepares a national audit report that will be the basis of a joint final report. Preliminary findings of the Polish and Slovak audits are similar, and indicate that: the supervision of waste movement to and from Ukraine is not sufficient; the transport of waste on the Ukrainian border is not precisely, physically controlled; border crossings are not properly equipped with tools to compare the actual quantity and type of transported waste with shipping documents.

Another audit conducted by the SAIs of Poland and Slovakia at the moment is related to the protection against infectious diseases. NIK was the first SAI in Europe to start an audit concerning the preparation of the state bodies to address the epidemiological threat.

NIK is going to share its experiences gathered during this audit with an international team. Its members, apart from NIK and the SAI of Slovakia, are the SAI of the Czech Republic, Ukraine and Hungary. The audit started on 1 October 2020 and ended in March 2021.