EU anti-fraud boss seeks audit experts

The European Union’s commissioner for fighting fraud has declared he wants a network of audit experts established by this December, charged with advising him and his officials on auditing issues.

Link: Fraud cases on the rise in UK

Estonia’s Siim Kallas – speaking to his country’s national audit board conference in Tallinn – said the advisors would help the European Commission ‘propose mutual recognition and co-operation of the public oversight systems’.

The European Parliament and the European Union (EU) Council of Ministers are already considering proposed legislation on statutory audits, insisting that public oversight services should cover auditor registration, external investigations and sanctions for wrongdoing.

‘The Commission has concluded that there is a need to strengthen coordinated European public oversight of the audit profession… to restore the trust in the audit function,’ said the commissioner for administrative affairs, audit and anti-fraud.

Kallas also revealed the Commission would formally propose a system later this year ensuring only one ‘single audit’ (national or European) be carried out on EU spending programmes.

The commissioner criticised the existing system, where a programme could be audited three times.

He called for a debate on how national supreme audit institutions ‘can be integrated into an overall audit strategy when it comes to auditing EU funds.’

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