As part of their commitment to work together to improve the oversight of public finances and governance, key actors from the UK and the Overseas Territories (OTs) met in London this week.
The Oversight of Public Finances and Governance – London Forum 2019 ran from 9-11 December 2019 and was attended by Chairs of Public Accounts Committees (PAC); parliamentary clerks; and Heads of Internal and External Audit from Anguilla, Bermuda, Cayman Islands, Falkland Islands, Gibraltar, Montserrat, Pitcairn Islands, St Helena, Turks & Caicos Islands, the UK, and Virgin Islands (UK).
This is the third Forum bringing together these key actors to explore the issue of public financial oversight and good governance under the banner of the UK Overseas Territories Project. The current phase of the project is due to come to an end in 2020 and is an initiative delivered in partnership by the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association UK (CPA UK), UK National Audit Office (NAO) and the Government Internal Audit Agency (GIAA) along with participating OTs.
Launched in 2017 the Project partnered with OTs to identify areas where support would be welcome, and activities were tailored to address those areas. Activities included clerk attachments from the UK devolved legislatures and Crown Dependencies to PACs in the OTs; multilateral training for External Auditors; secondments to the NAO and GIAA; and workshops for parliamentarians and officials in the OTs, Westminster, Scotland and Wales.
The Oversight of Public Finances and Governance – London Forum 2019 was a final opportunity to explore progress in OTs to date, address some of the ongoing challenges faced by PACs, Internal and External Audit agencies and identify ways in which the UK and OTs can continue to work together beyond the end of the project to ensure long-lasting impact.
Chair of the UK Overseas Territories Project, Rt Hon. Lord Foulkes, stated:
“I have been delighted to see the positive outcomes from the UK Overseas Territories Project. The OTs have demonstrated a strong commitment to working together to strengthen their public financial oversight and scrutiny functions.
With the latest phase of the project scheduled to come to an end in 2020, the London Forum is an opportunity to cement the learning and good practice that has been developed to ensure that effective public financial oversight continues beyond the life of the project.”
Delegates representing 10 UK Overseas Territories gather in London for the Forum
Rt Hon. Baroness D'Souza addresses delegates about the importance of accountability as the bedrock of society
CPA UK Chief Executive, Jon Davies, addressing delegates