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July 06, 2012

Latest Issue of the International Journal of Governmental Financial Management

Posted by Andy Wynne – andywynne@lineone.net

ICGFM1
The latest issue of the International Journal of Governmental Financial Management is now available for free down load from: www.icgfm.org/journal

This issue of the Journal begins with An Overview of Accounting in the Nigerian Public Sector which is the first chapter of a recent book by two eminent Nigerian authors, Eddy O. Omolehinwa and J. K. Naiyeju. This paper reviews the differences between public sector accounting and that undertaken in the private sector. It then discusses the different types of public sector organisation and the approaches to public sector accounting which have been developed for each of these institutions. Finally the authors consider the research challenges in the area of public sector accounting. They note that the most important has been access to data, but that this has improved in recent years with the annual and even quarterly financial statements now being made available for the Nigerian public sector on the Internet.

Administrative Cameralistics is a particular accounting model developed for use by governmental organizations in German-speaking European countries. In this paper, Norvald Monsen builds on previous papers in this Journal with a practical example. This illustrates the two developed variants of Administrative Cameralistics. These both include two core financial statements: the Statement of Revenues and Expenditures and Statement of Financial Status. These examples again show that the public sector has traditionally been based on the modified cash basis of accounting.

In the third paper, Udaya Pant, considers Public Financial Management Reforms in Nepal. He presents an analysis and scrutiny of the evolution of the Nepali public financial management system and recent reform efforts. A description of the historical background should help readers to understand the subject and the key issues. He concludes that basic reforms need to be institutionalized. The intent should not be to ‘push reforms’ to please the donors. Rather, the basic systems may be tried first, to internalize the skills and the spirit of reform and ensure that the reforms are monitored regularly.

The next paper provides a reflection on public financial management reforms in Liberia (West Africa) by a senior financial official from the public service of India. Amitabh Tripathi notes that despite the consensus on its importance, post-conflict public financial management capacity building is a tale of two contrasting ideal types – one that is prescribed, in theory and another that is practised. The paper argues that despite the ‘intrusive’ international engagement, capacity building in Liberia evolved through a slow and incremental process.

In our final paper of this issue, Andy Wynne briefly outlines why business style accrual accounting is not generally appropriate for the public sector. This conclusion is based on the actual evidence for the costs and benefits of business style accrual accounting from Britain, Australia and New Zealand. He also reviews the significant problems around the implementation of accrual accounting in the Cayman Islands. The paper concludes that incentives are needed to develop existing approaches to public sector financial reporting in ways which recognize the distinctive objectives and nature of government in the provision of public goods and services.

This issue again ends with a section reviewing recent public financial management publications and other resources which it is hoped will be of interest to readers of the Journal.

Please do not hesitate to contact the Editor if you would like to discuss contributions to future issues of this journal – andywynne@lineone.net

Note: The posts on the IMF PFM Blog should not be reported as representing the views of the IMF. The views expressed are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent those of the IMF or IMF policy. 

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