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The Finance portfolio is responsible for the preparation of the consolidated financial statements (CFS) of the Australian Government and a range of finance-related functions that include providing the Australian Government with Budget policy advice, responsibility for superannuation arrangements for government employees, and responsibility for asset sales.
Read an overview of the Finance portfolio including details of key activities, expenses and staffing levels. The audit focus section outlines the influences on the ANAO’s allocation of financial audit resources and the selection of performance audit topics and other activities. Also included is a list of material and non-material entities within the portfolio with their corresponding risk profile and key risks. Any risks that are considered key audit matters (KAMs) by the ANAO are separately identified.
The audit would assess whether the Australian Government’s purchase of state government shares of Snowy Hydro Limited provided value for money with public resources.
In March 2018, the Australian Government announced that it would purchase New South Wales and Victoria’s combined shareholding of Snowy Hydro Limited (87 per cent). The purchase of Snowy Hydro Limited is a precursor to the planned implementation of Snowy Hydro 2.0, the expansion of the Snowy Mountains Scheme to facilitate pumped hydro for electricity generation.
The audit would include an assessment of the Department of Finance and the Treasury’s assurance on whether value for money was achieved in the purchase.
The audit would assess the effectiveness of the design and establishment of the Regional Investment Corporation. This assessment would include the advice provided by the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources and the Department of Finance on service delivery arrangements, as well as the corporation’s governance and management of risk.
The Regional Investment Corporation was established to streamline the administration of farm business loan arrangements to ensure they are delivered in a nationally consistent and efficient manner. From July 2018, the corporation will be responsible for delivering the $2 billion National Water Infrastructure Loan Facility and up to $2 billion in Commonwealth farm business concessional loans.
This audit would examine the effectiveness and efficiency of the design and implementation of the Streamlining Government Grants Administration (SGGA) Program.
Announced in 2015–16 Budget as part of the Digital Transformation Agenda, the Department of Finance led the SGGA Program initiative as part of the Government’s vision for a smaller, smarter, and more productive and sustainable public sector. Two grants hubs have been established: the Business Grants Hub in the Department of Industry, Innovation and Science; and the Community Grants Hub in the Department of Social Services. Finance also implemented GrantConnect, the Australian Government’s whole-of-government grant information system.
The SGGA Program is expected to reduce red tape for grant applicants and recipients and result in administrative efficiencies for government. This audit would examine the Department of Finance’s design and implementation of the SGGA Program to achieve efficiency savings, provide transparency about grant processes and outcomes, and facilitate sufficient assurance over administrative processes for participating entities.
This audit would examine Defence Housing Australia’s (DHA’s) governance and financial management arrangements to support its property service for the Australian Defence Force.
DHA’s property portfolio is worth approximately $11 billion, and its 2017–18 budget is approximately $1.3 billion. DHA is a government business enterprise established under the Defence Housing Australia Act 1987 and its primary focus is to provide housing for Australian Defence Force members with dependants.
DHA is a government business enterprise. The ANAO can conduct performance audits of government business enterprises where requested by the Joint Committee of Public Accounts and Audit.
This audit would examine the Department of Communications and the Arts and NBN Co Limited’s management of the migration of existing fixed-line telephone services to the national broadband network.
As the national broadband network is rolled out, there is an 18-month migration window that starts when NBN Co Limited declares a region ‘ready for service’. During the migration window, all voice, broadband and other services that operate on Telstra’s local access networks are to be migrated to services provided by NBN Co Limited. At the end of the migration window, the network service provider is required to disconnect all services on its local access networks. In 2017, there was an increase in complaints received by the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman regarding national broadband network migration issues and connection speeds. This potential audit is one of a series of audits of NBN Co Limited and forms part of a performance audit strategy to be delivered over several years. As the migration process is substantial in scale and timeframes, the exact scope of this audit would be clarified closer to the point of commencement.
NBN Co Limited is a government business enterprise. The ANAO can conduct performance audits of government business enterprises where requested by the Joint Committee of Public Accounts and Audit.
This audit would examine whether WSA Co Limited’s procurement framework and procurement activities are achieving value for money.
WSA Co Limited was established in August 2017 as a government business enterprise to develop and operate Western Sydney Airport. It has already released tenders for enabling works, including geotechnical investigation and land survey services. The company will undertake further procurement of enabling activities in 2017 and early 2018 for remediation of contamination and initial bulk earthworks.
WSA Co Limited is a government business enterprise. The ANAO can conduct performance audits of government business enterprises where requested by the Joint Committee of Public Accounts and Audit.
The objective of the audit is to continue to examine the progress of the implementation of the annual performance statements requirements under the Public Governance, Performance and Accountability Act 2013 (PGPA Act) and the Public Governance, Performance and Accountability Rule 2014 (PGPA Rule) by selected entities.
The objective of this audit is to assess the effectiveness of the management of cyber security risks by three government business enterprises or corporate Commonwealth entities. The entities selected for audit are ASC Pty Ltd, the Australian Postal Corporation and the Reserve Bank of Australia.