My Committee approves the NAO’s future plans and resource requirements. The Commission is conscious of the need for the NAO to practise what it preaches in terms of value for money, and also to have the right capability to perform its duties.
Since 2010-11, the NAO has, under our direction, reduced the cost of its work by 26% in real terms, excluding new local government work. The NAO’s budget is set to ensure that it has the resources that it needs to discharge its statutory functions to Parliament, while also meeting the external quality standards that govern its audit work.
It is obviously too early to say what the full impact of Brexit will be, but I can say that the NAO’s scrutiny will focus initially on the capacity and capability of Departments to deliver an effective and efficient exit process. The NAO is now the auditor of the new Department for Exiting the European Union, and will work with that Department and with the Treasury to ensure that disclosures in annual reports and accounts provide a transparent and balanced view of the impact on individual Departments. In my view, the whole point of this process is, indeed, to increase transparency and parliamentary accountability as we take back control of our own money.