Comptroller and Auditor General
Report for presentation to the Houses of the Oireachtas
National Debt of Ireland
I have audited the financial statements of the National Debt of Ireland for the year ended 31 December 2015 under the National Treasury Management Agency Act, 1990 (as amended). The financial statements comprise the service of national debt, the national debt statement, the national debt cash flow statement, the statement of movement in national debt and the related notes. The financial statements have been prepared in the form prescribed under section 12 of the National Treasury Management Agency Act, 1990 (as amended).
Responsibilities of the National Treasury Management Agency
The National Treasury Management Agency (the Agency) is responsible for the preparation of the financial statements, for ensuring that they properly present the balance outstanding on the national debt at year end, and the debt service cost for the year, and for ensuring the regularity of transactions.
Responsibilities of the Comptroller and Auditor General
My responsibility is to audit the financial statements and report on them in accordance with applicable law.
My audit is conducted by reference to the special considerations which attach to State Bodies in relation to their management and operation.
My audit is carried out in accordance with the International Standards on Auditing (UK and Ireland) and in compliance with the Auditing Practices Board’s Ethical Standards for Auditors.
Scope of audit of the financial statements
An audit involves obtaining evidence about the amounts and disclosures in the financial statements, sufficient to give reasonable assurance that the financial statements are free from material misstatement, whether caused by fraud or error. This includes an assessment of
- whether the accounting policies are appropriate to the circumstances, and have been consistently applied and adequately disclosed
- the reasonableness of significant accounting estimates made in the preparation of the financial statements, and
- the overall presentation of the financial statements.
I also seek to obtain evidence about the regularity of financial transactions in the course of audit.
I read the information about the national debt in the annual report of the Agency to identify if there are any material inconsistencies with the audited financial statements and to identify if there is any information that is apparently materially incorrect or inconsistent based on the knowledge acquired by me in the course of performing the audit. If I become aware of any apparent material misstatements or inconsistencies, I consider the implications for my report.
Opinion on the financial statements
In my opinion, the financial statements, which have been properly prepared in the form prescribed under section 12 of the National Treasury Management Agency Act, 1990 (as amended) properly present the balance outstanding on the national debt at 31 December 2015 and the debt service cost for 2015.
In my opinion, the accounting records of the Agency were sufficient to permit the financial statements to be readily and properly audited. The financial statements are in agreement with the accounting records.
Matters on which I report by exception
I report by exception if I have not received all the information and explanations I required for my audit, or if I find
- any material instance where public money has not been applied for the purposes intended or where the transactions did not conform to the authorities governing them, or
- the information pertaining to the national debt in the Agency’s annual report is not consistent with the related financial statements, or
- the statement on internal financial control does not reflect the Agency’s compliance with the Code of Practice for the Governance of State Bodies, or
- there are other material matters relating to the manner in which public business has been conducted.
I have nothing to report in regard to those matters upon which reporting is by exception.
Comptroller and Auditor General
26 May 2016