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March 21, 2012

IFAC calls for public financial management change

International Federation of Accountants (IFAC) has called for a radical reform of public financial management systems and institutions around the world.

IFAC chief executive Ian Ball said, at the Sovereign Debt Crisis, a Matter of Urgency- From Lessons to Reform conference addressing the causes contributing to the international sovereign debt crisis as well as the fiscal stress and instability associated with it, that enhanced transparency and accountability on the part of public sector entities around the world would achieve long-term fiscal sustainability, more effective governments and reduced risk of new fiscal crises.

“We heard over these two days that the problems with financial management and reporting are not confined to a small handful of European countries, but are widespread” Ball remarked.

“There is a real danger of the current sovereign debt crisis, coupled with the fiscal challenges of aging populations, deepening into a global fiscal crisis—and it is therefore more urgent than ever that we act to bring about a radical transformation in public financial management”.

Speakers at the conference included financial leaders such as World Bank Group chief financial officer Vincenzo La Via, former prime minister of Sweden Göran Persson, former New Zealand Minister of Finance Ruth Richardson and Comeback America Initiative chief executive and former US Comptroller David Walker.

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