Government’s improvements in accounting system lack ambition

In a letter to the House of Representatives of 5 April 2018, the Netherlands Court of Audit states that the government’s intention to make structural improvements in the government-wide accounting system lacks commitment and ambition.

The letter was written further to the government’s response to an advisory report issued last year recommending the gradual reform of the accounting system. Central government currently uses an obligations-cash  system but the report recommends that it move more towards an accrual  system. Many other public authorities (including municipalities and arm’s length institutions that carry out a statutory task) already use an accrual system. Many member states of the European Union also apply it.

According to the Netherlands Court of Audit, the government has not made a clear decision to introduce an accrual system in due course. The House of Representatives wishes to debate this matter with the Minister of Finance later this year.