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The audit objective was to assess whether agreements between Australian Government (Commonwealth) agencies reflect sound administrative practices. To meet this objective, the audit reviewed current government policy and a range of better practice guidelines, conducted interviews with agencies and examined cross-agency agreements, to formulate suitable audit criteria and subsequently develop better practice principles.
In two letters dated 19 and 22 June 2009, the Prime Minister requested a performance audit of a range of matters relating to representations to the Treasury regarding automotive finance arrangements for car dealers. In response to these requests, the Auditor-General decided that ANAO would undertake a performance audit under section 18 of the Auditor-General Act 1997 (Auditor-General Act). The audit objective, based on the matters raised in the Prime Minister's correspondence and in the Parliament, was to examine and report on:
any representations to the Treasury since October 2008 from all sources regarding automotive finance arrangements for car dealers, including any made in relation to John Grant Motors;
the nature of these representations;
the manner in which the representations were responded to by officials, having regard to any relevant standards and procedures; and
any related administrative matters that came to attention.