25th UN/INTOSAI Symposium
Online for the first time and with almost 300 participants from 120 countries
The 25th UN/INTOSAI Symposium was held from 28 to 30 June 2021. For the first time in its 50-year-old history, the symposium was held via videoconference. Almost 300 representatives of international organizations and SAIs from some 120 countries took part in the symposium.
Under the heading "Working during and after the pandemic: building on the experience of Supreme Audit Institutions (SAIs) for strengthening effective institutions and achieving sustainable societies", the symposium revolved around the impacts of the pandemic on the working methods and audits of SAIs.
The symposium was jointly opened by the Secretary General of INTOSAI, Margit Kraker, the Chair of INTOSAI, Aleksei Kudrin, and the Under-Secretary-General of the United Nations for Economic and Social Affairs, Liu Zhenmin.
Over the three days, high-ranking representatives of SAIs, the World Bank, IDI, the IIA (Institute of Internal Auditors), the IBP (International Budget Partnership) and UNODC (United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime) discussed the following subthemes:
- Impact of COVID-19 on SAIs' organizational capacities, working methods and processes
- Experiences and good practices in auditing the COVID-19 responses and recovery plans
- Innovative approaches to enhancing the transparency of and accountability for the COVID-19 responses
- Resilient accountability systems and institutions in the aftermath of COVID-19
The technical chair was held by Daniel Lambauer (SAI of the United Kingdom).
On the last day of the symposium, the participants adopted the outcome document of the event, namely the "Conclusions and Recommendations". These are to serve as important guidelines for the future approach and cooperation of SAIs in this regard.
Maria-Francesca Spatolisano (UN Assistant Secretary-General) and the Secretary General of INTOSAI delivered the closing statements at the symposium: "We will use the lessons learned from the crisis to open up new audit areas and develop new audit approaches," said Secretary General Margit Kraker in conclusion.
"At the same time we are called upon to continue making our contribution to the implementation of the SDGs – in particular to SDG 16, which envisages peace, justice and strong institutions."