International Journal of Government Auditing – Oct 2009

Sixth Meeting of the Steering Committee of the Professional Standards Committee

From June 17 through 19, 2009, the Brazilian Court of Audit (TCU) hosted the 6th meeting of INTOSAI’s Professional Standards Committee (PSC) Steering Committee in Brasilia, Brazil. The participants were from the SAIs of Denmark (which chairs the PSC), South Africa, Canada, China, the United States, France, Morocco, Mexico, Norway, New Zealand, and Sweden. Observers from the World Bank, the INTOSAI Development Initiative (IDI), the International Federation of Accountants (IFAC), and the Institute of Internal Auditors (IIA) also attended.

In his opening speech, the President of the TCU, Minister Ubiratan Aguiar, highlighted the relevance of the PSC’s work to SAIs in many countries, since INTOSAI’s standards help them deal with increasingly complex demands. He also emphasized the importance of the meeting in Brasilia, whose discussions centered on topics pertaining to the direction the PSC is to take after 2010.

Participants attending the meeting of the PSC Steering Committee in Brasilia in June 2009
Participants attending the meeting of the PSC Steering Committee in Brasilia in June 2009.

The PSC is responsible for the development, maintenance, and dissemination of INTOSAI’s standards, the International Standards of Supreme Audit Institutions (ISSAI), which are organized in a structure with four hierarchical levels. On June 17, participants discussed a project to review level 3 standards (fundamental auditing principles) to improve the consistency of the ISSAIs. Participants also discussed (1) a new process for developing, modifying, and withdrawing ISSAIs and (2) a pilot project to promulgate the ISSAIs within EUROSAI and, possibly at a later stage, other interested regional INTOSAI groups through an awareness raising seminar.

On the second day, the PSC subcommittees presented their work and the documents they have already developed or are developing. Cooperation with external partners, such as IFAC and IIA, was also discussed, as were plans to present the most recently developed standards to the INTOSAI congress in 2010. The Steering Committee’s next meeting will be held May 5–7, 2010, in Copenhagen, Denmark.

The minutes of the 6th PSC Steering Committee meeting, as well as the PSC’s terms of reference, the work plan, and other committee documents, are available on the PSC Web site:

Financial Audit Guidelines Subcommittee

By October 31, 2009, INTOSAI’s Financial Audit Subcommittee (FAS) will have completed the exposure of 38 International Standards of Supreme Audit Institutions (ISSAI), 28 of which have been exposed since the 2007 INTOSAI congress. FAS would like to take this opportunity to thank all who have contributed their knowledge, experience, thoughts, and ideas during this process.

The ISSAIs consist of a practice note developed by FAS and a corresponding International Standard on Audit (ISA). At the end of 2008, the International Auditing and Assurance Standards Board completed its project to improve the clarity and consistency of the language used in the ISAs. Since then, FAS has reviewed all the practice notes to ensure their consistency with each other and with the clarity version of the ISAs.

The next challenge ahead is translating all practice notes into the official INTOSAI languages. FAS is grateful to the European Court of Auditors for handling the French, German, and Spanish translations. A professional translator has been engaged for the Arabic translation.

The following is the planned schedule for approvals:

  • FAS will approve (1) all practice notes for which the consistency has been checked in October 2009 and (2) ISSAIs 1000 and 1003 as well as all translated practice notes in April 2010.
  • The INTOSAI Governing Board will approve all practice notes in November 2009 and ISSAIs 1000 and 1003 in November 2010.
  • The Steering Committee of the Professional Standards Committee will approve ISSAIs 1000 and 1003 in May 2010.
  • The XX INCOSAI will endorse all the final ISSAIs in all official languages in November 2010.

For additional information, please contact the FAS Secretariat:

Fax: +46-8-51714111
Web site: