Announcements from 2020

Our intentions: Understanding and managing the risks of a failure by a strategic supplier

9 November 2020: Public organisations often rely on third-party suppliers to provide goods and services to New Zealanders. Some suppliers provide highly specialised goods or services, with few or no other options available, and may have long-established relationships with the public organisations they are supplying. We call these "strategic suppliers".

Controller update on Government spending on Covid-19 Controller update on Government spending on Covid-19

17 September 2020: While carrying out our Controller work this year, we have been giving special attention to the Covid-19 spending. In this Update, we report on what has been approved, and what the Government has spent, on the Covid-19 response for the year ended 30 June 2020.

Controller update on Government spending on Covid-19 Controller update on Government spending on Covid-19

27 July 2020: We have examined the Government’s financial records for spending approved and incurred for the 11 months ended 31 May 2020. From what we have seen, the Covid-19 spending has been correctly approved.

Our intentions: Looking at governance of the Auckland City Rail Link project Our intentions: Looking at governance of the Auckland City Rail Link project

27 July 2020: A 3.45km underground tunnel is going below the centre of New Zealand’s biggest city. Due for completion in 2024 and costing up to $4.42 billion, the Auckland City Rail Link project is jointly governed by Auckland Council and the Government. It is part of the $28 billion Auckland Transport Alignment Project 2018-28.

Unite for the Recovery advertising

24 July 2020: We have written back to the New Zealand Taxpayers' Union about its concerns over Unite for the Recovery advertising in some media.

Controller update on Government spending on Covid-19 Controller update on Government spending on Covid-19

11 June 2020: We have examined the Government’s financial records for spending approved and expenses incurred against these approvals for the 10 months ended 30 April 2020. From what we have seen, the Covid-19 spending approvals have been managed appropriately. We report on one area where spending has been incurred without the correct approvals.

Controller update on Government spending on Covid-19 Controller update on Government spending on Covid-19

12 May 2020: We have examined the Government's financial records for expenditure approved and expenses incurred during March 2020. From what we have seen, the Covid-19 expenditure has been approved correctly. We have not identified any expenditure incurred during March without Parliament and Cabinet approvals.

Controller update on Government spending on Covid-19 Controller update on Government spending on Covid-19

9 April 2020: There will be an unprecedented amount of public money spent over the coming months as the Government responds to the challenges of the Covid-19 pandemic. We will monitor the Covid-19 spending and will report to the public and Parliament about how the Government is accounting for it.

COVID-19: Important governance matters to consider COVID-19: Important governance matters to consider

3 April 2020: The Auditor-General has written to the chief executives of a range of public agencies about important governance matters to consider during the response to the pandemic. The contents of this letter are useful matters for all chief executives and senior managers to consider.

Auditing in the context of COVID-19 Auditing in the context of COVID-19

25 March 2020: We’re aware that the current circumstances leave public entities unsure how they might meet their accountability obligations. The Auditor-General’s audit service providers are responding to the evolving COVID-19 situation with the best interests of our communities in mind.

Controller update: July to December 2019 Controller update: July to December 2019

4 March 2020: Most government spending for the first six months of 2019/20 has been properly authorised and was within the law. However, we have confirmed three instances that were not properly authorised.

Response to our inquiry into the Saudi Arabia Food Security Partnership

5 February 2020: In 2016, we published the findings for our inquiry into the Saudi Arabia Food Security Partnership. In our report, we said that we expected the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (the Ministry) and New Zealand Trade and Enterprise (NZTE) to assess and report on what the Partnership has achieved once all of the goods and services covered by the contract for services were provided. The Ministry and NZTE fully accept our findings and have written to the Auditor-General with their assessment of what has been achieved as a result of the Partnership. This letter closes off the key recommendation in our report.

Submission on the Public Service Legislation Bill Submission on the Public Service Legislation Bill

3 February 2020: The Governance and Administration Committee is seeking submissions on the Public Service Legislation Bill. The Bill sets out the role of the public service in supporting New Zealand’s system of government. As well as establishing the purpose, principles, and values of an apolitical public service, it also sets into legislation the role of the public service in supporting the Crown in its commitment to Māori and outlines the set of possible organisational arrangements that can be created in the public service. We provided a submission in January.