Institutional development cooperation between the Cour des Comptes Algeria and the Netherlands Court of Audit

Speech by Ewout Irrgang, Vice-President of the Netherlands Court of Audit, 5 October 2022 Algiers, Algeria  

Cher premier Président, Chère madame l´Ambassadeur, Chers colleagues, 

Marhaban bikum. C´est une honneur pour moi d´être ici pour le lancement de la collaboration entre nos deux institutes. Ça me fait beaucoup de plaisir de finalement rencontrer face à face après cette period de Covid et de confinement. Maintenant, je vais continuer en Anglais parce que nous sommes convenue que l´Anglais serait la langue preferée de notre cooperation. 

In 2016, the Netherlands Court of Audit embarked upon a journey together with seven Sharaka partners, on a regional and several bilateral collaboration programs. The aim of the partnership is to contribute to the development of good governance in public financial management and to the effectiveness of public services in our countries. Algeria has been part of the Sharaka programme since the very first day. Six years later we continue with the next chapter of our journey.

I hope that you also feel as expectant and hopeful as I do as we continue to work together and learn from each other. We continue what we can – after 6 years – call the proud tradition of our Supreme Audit Institutions. Sharing, as peers and equals, our experiences, obstacles we face, and learning from each other to ensure that our organisations remain vital, relevant, and connected to the citizens they serve. 

We have been on this journey together for the past six years. Despite the challenges we faced during the last two years of the pandemic, we have managed to achieve good results. During the first program, we have collaborated on several performance audits. Furthermore, we have worked together on IT audits. 

In addition to our bilateral cooperation, the Cour des Comptes has been an active participant of the regional Sharaka program on Communication and Stakeholder relations. Unfortunately, we could not work on a face to face basis, but we managed to find a digital way. However, we are very happy that we can finally meet again in person in Algiers. 

We achieved the majority of goals we set out at the beginning of our first Sharaka programme. As an example, my colleagues were most touched this week as one of your colleagues expressed that there was a `Nabila d´avant et une Nabila après Sharaka´. She developed another perspective on her work thanks in part to the Sharaka collaboration. We see this as a huge compliment. 

The external evaluation showed us that there is still room for improvement, which we will take into account during the continuation of our bilateral cooperation. As a gathering of learning institutions, we also aim to be a flexible and open cooperation programme. As the first generation of  Sharaka colleagues passed the torch to you, we try to do better for ourselves and for each other. Through open discussions and genuine free exchange with your colleagues, we discovered over the past couple of days how we can proceed with the second Sharaka program and make it even more relevant to us all. 

We believe that the close cooperation between our two institutions will help you to further strengthen your institute to the benefit of the people of Algeria. And, in the spirit of ISSAI 12, to make a difference in the lives of your citizens. 

Dear esteemed guests, I sincerely hope that the future will see us working together in this spirit. With the signing of the MoU later this morning, we will reconfirm our joint commitment to the  Sharaka collaboration. 

Lastly, I would like to express my gratitude to the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs for funding this program, and more in particular the Dutch embassy in Algeria for their close involvement. We are fortunate to have Her Excellency, the Ambassador, here with us today.

As we continue on our journey, I would like us to remind that the best things in life take time and sometimes you need to overcome obstacles. From what I understand, there is also an Algerian way to express this. 

Esberr maftah el djena. 

Patience is the key to paradise. May we have patience while bringing our counties forward. 

Shoukram jazilan