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Gibraltar's Accountant General Hits Back At Transparency Slurs

by Jason Gorringe, Tax-News.com, London

01 July 2002


Gibraltar's Accountant General, Dilip Tirathdas last week responded to the allegations made by the UK's Foreign and Commonwealth Office in June with regard to fiscal transparency in the jurisdiction.

A report published by the Guardian newspaper early last month suggested that: 'The Gibraltar government has not published official figures covering the colony's revenue and expenditure for more than a year and basic statistics on its gross domestic product have not been published for five years,' and cited the FCO as the source of these allegations.

However, the Rock's Accountant-General on Thursday detailed the extent to which documentation on public finances is available to the public.

'There have recently been suggestions purporting the non-transparency and non-availability of the public accounts of Gibraltar,' Mr Tirathdas observed. 'Under the laws of Gibraltar, the Accountant General has statutory responsibility to prepare accounts showing fully the financial position of the Government of Gibraltar at the end of each financial year.'

He continued: 'I have been the Accountant General for over six years and I can confirm that the annual accounts have always been prepared and submitted for audit within the statutory deadline of nine months from the end of each financial year.'

Mr Tirithdas announced that once the figures have been submitted, they are then audited by the Pricipal Auditor, presented to the House of Assembly, and made available to the public. He added that details of the financial positions of government-owned trading and property companies are also made publicly available.

'As Accountant-General, I can confirm that full information of the public finances of Gibraltar is made available to the public and any suggestion that this is not the case is just not true.' he concluded.


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