Czech Republic SAO Signs Agreement with IFAC
The President of the Supreme Audit Office (SAO) of the Czech Republic, Mr. Miloslav Kala, signed an agreement with the International Federation of Accountants (IFAC) in December, granting the SAO permission to translate and publish the 2016 Handbook of International Public Sector Accounting Pronouncements (IPSAS). The 2016 IPSAS Handbook includes a conceptual framework for general purpose financial reporting by public sector entities; numerous accrual-based IPSAS; recommended practice guidelines; and additional IFAC-developed documents.
The SAO capitalizes on previous experiences. This is the third edition the SAO, with IFAC approval, will have translated and published (in both soft and hard copy formats). In sharing its best practices with the international audit community, the SAO aims to help other Supreme Audit Institutions (SAIs) by highlighting the processes they have implemented and demonstrating how offering translated materials at no cost can greatly add value and benefits to the public.
Currently, the established translation process includes a principal translator (responsible for the translation process), a number of other translators, a review committee, and the IFAC staff. The review committee, comprised of nine members and four observers, is formed through SAO-appointed representatives and is chaired by the principal translator. In its member selections, the SAO attempts to involve key stakeholders and includes colleagues from the Ministry of Finance (national standards setter); academia; Chamber of Auditors; Union of Accountants; Big Four; Central Bank; National Statistical Office; as well as SAO staff. All review committee members and observers are well-versed in national and/or international standards.
The principal translator and the review committee finalize a list of translated key terms to ensure consistency throughout the translation process. Upon key terms approval, the review committee begins a series of monthly meetings. For the 2016 IPSAS Handbook, the final meeting is anticipated to take place later this year, where the review committee is expected to approve the edition.
Though financial reporting in the Czech public sector is not based on the IPSAS, it is definitely inspired by them, and the SAO has declared its desire and willingness to continue translating and publishing these important works in order to further enhance public sector reporting, transparency and accountability.