PWC to audit fiscal accounts
Mikati to prepare draft law on details of extra-budgetary spending
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The cabinet agreed to assign international auditing firm, Pricewaterhouse Coopers, to review the fiscal accounts of the Lebanese government between 1993 and 2010.

Roger Melki,former advisor to the Minister of Finance, said that the firm will review the spending of all ministries during the said period. “PWC will audit and confirm that the funds transferred to each ministry were spent for the declared purposes,” he said. According to Melki, the audit procedure will take around six months.

This is the second time the government has appointed an auditor to inspect the accounts. The fiscal accounts of the Lebanese government for the period 1993-2006 were audited during the term of former Minister of Finance Jihad Azour.

The cabinet also tasked Prime Minister Najib Mikati with preparing a draft law on the details of the extra-budgetary spending made by previous governments between 2006 and 2010.

Since 2005, no state budget has been approved. The government spending strategy was made through a uniform 12-month spending plan. The plan entails dividing the last approved budget, of 2005, into 12 months and spending the same monthly amounts accordingly throughout the following year.

The 12-month plan is not sustainable. It was initially enacted by law as an extraordinary measure to help the government pursue its normal conduct in the absence of a budget.

“It was supposed to be applied for one month. It was never intended to linger for years,” said Melki.


by Hanadi Chami
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Date Posted: Mar 09, 2012