State Finances 2018

The Auditor-General, Margaret Crawford released her report today on the State Finances for the year ended 30 June 2018.

‘I am pleased to once again report that I issued a clear audit opinion on the state’s consolidated financial statements,’ the Auditor-General said. ‘This demonstrates the government’s focus on preparing high quality information on the state’s financial position and performance for use by stakeholders’.  

The report notes there are two key areas that need to be addressed to further support the preparation of the state’s financial statements. Firstly, some complex accounting matters are not being resolved until late in the financial reporting cycle. This has contributed to an increase in the number of errors in the financial statements key agencies are submitting for audit, particularly around assessing the value of physical assets.  

Secondly, the state needs to implement five new accounting standards over the next two years. Agencies will need to devote resources and effort to collect the necessary information and assess the impact at the whole of government level.  

The report also discusses the state’s new financial management IT system, legislative reform and the transition to outcome based budgeting, all part of the NSW Treasury’s Financial Management Transformation program.

This program aims to reform the financial governance, budgeting and reporting arrangements of the New South Wales public sector.   The report notes the $4.2 billion state budget surplus. The consolidated financial statements at 30 June 2018 do not reflect the sale of 51 per cent of the state’s investment in Sydney Motorway Corporation for which it received $9.3 billion. The sale was announced on 31 August 2018. 

Further information

Barry Underwood, Director, Office of the Auditor-General, on 0403 073 664 and email