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Environmental auditing key to VN’s sustainable development: ASOSAI 14

Update: September, 18/2018 - 06:00
Auditor General Hồ Đức Phớc responded to media queries at the press conference on the 14th assembly of Asian Organisation of Supreme Auditing Institutions (ASOSAI), which is to be held in Hà Nội during September 17-22. — VNS Photo Trọng Kiên
Viet Nam News

HÀ NỘI — The theme of environmental auditing that Việt Nam has chosen for the Asian Organisation of Supreme Auditing Institutions (ASOSAI) as it hosts the event has received unanimous approval from the member states and showcased the Vietnamese Government’s commitment to sustainable development.

Hồ Đức Phớc, head of the State Audit of Việt Nam (SAV), made the comment at a press conference on September 17 regarding the 14th meeting of the ASOSAI, slated to be held in Hà Nội from September 19-22.

Auditor General Phớc said that the ASOSAI assembly is held every three years, gathering the heads of member states’ auditing institutions, to discuss and make decisions via majority voting on documents, regimes and mechanisms necessary to achieve the organisation’s goals and development objectives. It is also a platform for sharing experiences related to public auditing activities.

The 2018 assembly, held for the first time in Việt Nam since the country joined ASOSAI since 1997, is expected to see the attendance of 250 delegates from 46 Asian auditing institutions as well as representatives from the International Organisation of Auditing Institutions and other international organisations as observers.

Three-hundred and fifty Vietnamese delegates, representing the Communist Party, Government, socio-political organisations and academia, were also expected to attend various activities held within the framework of the event.

 In Việt Nam, environmental auditing remains a fairly novel process that is usually incorporated into traditional auditing processes rather than standing on its own. Not only until 2015 did the SAV officially establish the environmental auditing division, which was originally put under the agency’s international co-operation department.

The chief auditor said that the division would grow into its own separate unit, however, adding that the “consolidation of the division’s human resources and operations is still underway.”

Via the assembly, SAV would like to learn from the experiences and best practices from other countries with more developed auditing systems, Phớc said.

Việt Nam’s auditing currently has strengths in legal compliance and financial auditing, while remaining weak in operational auditing – including environment, IT, or natural resources auditing – the areas in which it is seeking to build up internal capacity.

“Việt Nam is a developing country. Without proper management mechanisms, the country will easily fall prey to the influx of outdated technology and sub-standard scraps,” Phớc said, explaining the choice for theme of this year’s assembly, reiterating the Vietnamese Government’s rejection of “development-at-all-costs” economic policies.

The hosting of the ASOSAI XIV also means the State Audit of Việt Nam will assume the chair position of the organisation and is expected to chart directions and agendas for the 2018-21 term. It is certainly an honour and Việt Nam will do its best to show that it is an active and responsible member, but this will not be an easy task for the fledging auditing sector of Việt Nam.

ASOSAI 14 will also be the first assembly to issue a declaration, the Hà Nội declaration, which contains members’ commitments on public auditing with a focus on sustainable development and environmental protection.

ASOSAI 14 assembly is one of Việt Nam’s biggest diplomatic events in 2018, besides the World Economic Forum on ASEAN, and a chance for the country to promote its culture and development achievements to international friends and partners.  — VNS

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