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An annual audit programme shaped by the digital transformation

The Finance Delegation and the Federal Council have acknowledged the 2022 annual programme of the Swiss Federal Audit Office (SFAO). This programme is drawn up completely independently by the SFAO, and is the result of a risk analysis spanning the entire scope of its portfolio. A number of wide-ranging projects linked to the digital transformation will be audited. In addition, the SFAO will carry out the preparatory work on the future transparency of political funding.

The SFAO management has selected around 160 audit mandates for 2022. Around 100 employees will carry out these audits, which are very varied, ranging from financial audits to evaluations, to reviews of the procurement of goods and services. It is planned to publish 77 audits. As a reminder, the SFAO has actively published its reports since 2014. To date, some 372 audit reports have been made publicly available.

The annual audit programme is drawn up on the basis of an in-depth analysis of the financial and operational risks borne by the Confederation and its administrative units. Year after year, this analysis reveals an ever-more complex list of audit topics. Their societal importance and public interest are also considerable. Within the administration, networking is increasingly replacing classical silo structures. As a result, a growing number of players and units have to be included in the scope of the audits performed by the SFAO.

The auditing of the federal accounts alone takes up nearly a thousand audit days, and the 2022 fiscal year is no exception. Besides this, audits will focus on subjects such as the effectiveness of CO2 tax exemptions or the new framework conditions for medical radiology. Around a dozen projects linked to the digital transformation will be audited, particularly in the area of customs, IT services for the Armed Forces, roads and internal federal funding processes.

The SFAO also intends to audit the planning and oversight of investments aimed at maintaining the quality of SBB infrastructure, the project for the new embassy in Beijing, secondary occupations of staff at the federal higher education institutions, and subsidies to organisations for the disabled. The complete audit programme can be found on the SFAO website.

In December 2021, the Federal Assembly reiterated its confidence in the SFAO's work and, in accordance with the financial plan set out in 2019, allocated additional funds to allow it to better cover major risks. Additional funds were also allocated to the SFAO for a new task in connection with political transparency. The SFAO will have a budget of CHF 32 million in 2022.

Swiss politics faces the challenge of transparency in its funding

The Federal Council has appointed the SFAO as the supervisory authority for political transparency. This decision follows a revision of the Federal Act on Political Rights in June 2021 – Parliament's response to the federal popular initiative "For more transparency in political funding". For this purpose, the SFAO will create an information and publication platform, and introduce formal and material checks on politicians. A Federal Council ordinance is due to set out the exact details by summer 2022.

Press release: Annual programme 2022

Annual programme 2022 (Excel, in German)

Further details:

Michel Huissoud, Director of the SFAO, tel. 058 463 11 11