PracticeAuditONS and Treasury face accounts inquiry

ONS and Treasury face accounts inquiry

The Statistics Commission is to investigate the Office of National Statistics and the Treasury, following accusations of 'Enron-style' accounting from the opposition.

The move comes after the ONS announced that £9bn of guarantees from the government for loans to Network Rail – set to acquire beleaguered Railtrack – would be included as part of the Treasury’s accounts.

The Statistics Commission will meet in two weeks to discuss the off-balance sheet accounting and the controversial decision to classify Network Rail as a private company.

The National Audit Office has opposed Network Rail’s classification as a private sector company, saying the rail company should be classified as a subsidiary of the Strategic Rail Authority, which would make it a public company.

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