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IFAC CEO calls for transparency in government reporting

Investors in government institutions do not get the highest quality financial reports and government reports lack transparency, the International Federation of Accountants (IFAC) chief executive Ian Ball said.

Speaking at the World Bank Government Borrowers Forum held in Chile, Ball said

Government reports should provide the same information that they require of corporates.

“Not only should they provide this information, it should be subject to independent audit,” he said.

According to Ball, the serious obstacle in government reporting is the absence of a political will for transparency on the part of too many governments.

He believes the structure of incentives faced by politicians makes them, “keen to avoid transparency and the institutional arrangements that would be effective in forcing this transparency do not exist in most countries”.

Ball has called for greater incentives to be implemented for governments to increase transparency and enhance the level of information provided in financial reports.

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