OTTAWA, ONTARIO (June 15, 2012) – The Honourable John Duncan, Minister of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development, announced today the implementation of new financial reporting requirements for First Nations with funding agreements with AANDC. The new approach is an important step toward Canada's commitment to greater accountability, reducing red tape and reducing the reporting burden for funding recipients.
"As Minister, I want to ensure that it is clear to all concerned how public funds are used for AANDC programs," said Minister Duncan. "An important means of advancing this objective is to ensure that the audited financial statements we receive and that are made available to community members are clear and consistent across Canada. It is equally important that funding recipients have access to simple, efficient tools to meet rising expectations for financial accountability and transparency."
The department worked closely with the Aboriginal Financial Officers Association (AFOA) to develop the model for these financial statements. The new model will contribute to increased accountability and transparency and will support First Nation governments' efforts to attract investments and stimulate economic development, while ensuring transparency to community members.
The model was reviewed by several accounting firms that audit Aboriginal financial statements and by the department's Audit Committee. This model presents substantial benefits to funding recipients by reducing the reporting burden, improving the quality of financial information available, and providing a generally accepted tool to do business with current and potential partners.
The improved financial information derived from these statements will help inform program and policy approaches, and support departmental accountability to Parliament and Canadians. This initiative also assists in laying the groundwork for the implementation of Bill C-27, the First Nations Financial Transparency Act, now before Parliament, which will require that financial statements be publicly disclosed by First Nations.
AANDC informed all recipients of the new requirement. The new consistent audited consolidated financial statement models are available online.
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