Dickinson Statement - CF
Audit opinion for government transactions
Consolidated Fund financial statements for the year ended March 31 were tabled in the House of Assembly Friday.
Curtis Dickinson, the Minister of Finance, told MPs that the fund had been given an unqualified audit opinion.
He added that items that had led to the fund being given a qualified opinion in 2018 had “been rectified”.
The fund is the general operating fund for the Government and through which most government transactions were completed.
Mr Dickinson said that for the ninth consecutive year Heather Thomas, the Auditor-General, had included explanatory paragraphs in her report.
He added the paragraphs covered public debt and guarantees, increasing net debt and usefulness of financial statements.
Mr Dickinson said on public debt and guarantees: “The Auditor-General has highlighted that while the Government is within the legislated debt limit of $2.5 billion, there is a further $1.2 billion in guarantees to various lenders by the CF.”
He added that Ms Thomas had highlighted that net debt “increased by $102 million and continues to grow”.
Mr Dickinson said that Ms Thomas had said that the usefulness of financial statements was “limited because they are not summary financial statements”.
He explained that the statements did not “represent the combined financial position and activities of all government entities, only the CF.”
But Mr Dickinson said that it was important that the explanatory paragraphs did not alter Ms Thomas’s unqualified opinion.
He added: “The Government notes the Auditor’s concerns in these areas and has already started to tackle these matters.
“For instance, the Ministry of Finance has already put in place a plan to eliminate the deficit and ultimately reduce the debt.”
• To read Curtis Dickinson’s statement in full, click on the PDF under “Related Media”
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