President Panuelo Opens 33rd Association of Pacific Islands Public Auditors (APIPA) Conference

PALIKIR, Pohnpei—On August 29th, 2022, His Excellency David W. Panuelo—President of the Federated States of Micronesia (FSM)—provided opening remarks for the 33rd annual conference for the Association of Pacific Islands’ Public Auditors (APIPA). First held in June 1989, the annual APIPA conference provides members with the opportunity to act as one voice in support of the goal of promoting efficiency and accountability in the use of public resources of emerging nations of the Pacific; to provide a forum for the exchange of ideas, experience, problems, and the identification of solutions which are often unique to Public Auditors in the Pacific; to sponsor auditing and accounting training workshops; to identify scholarship sources for Pacific Islanders in need of financial assistance to study auditing and accounting at the post-secondary level; and to promote public awareness for the purposes of conducting audits and public resources.

“I cannot overemphasize the importance of Public Auditors in the functioning of our respective Governments,” President Panuelo said. “Transparency and accountability are not only theoretical concepts, but, rather, they must also constitute important guides in our public actions.”

In his inaugural address in 2019, President Panuelo committed to strengthening the National Public Auditor’s office by seeking to provide them more staff and financial support. “It is my hope,” President Panuelo said, “That with the continuing support and contribution by the FSM Congress, and also the various executive departments and agencies of the National Government, that our Office of Public Auditor will continue to produce high quality and valuable audit reports that are practical, useful, and efficient…. This, in turn, will improve the quality and delivery of our public services and shall build confidence and trust on the part of our development partners on our governance in our country, and in the way that we implement development programs and spend financial assistance in a responsible manner.”

In addition to receiving Continuing Professional Education (CPE) credits, attendees to the 33rd APIPA Conference, to be held from August 29th to September 2nd, 2022, will hear from experts in and around the Pacific, and engage in both general and technical training from nine world-class instructors. The opening plenary will feature the U.S. Department of Interior’s Office of the Inspector General, as well as the U.S. State of Hawaii’s State Auditor.

APIPA was formed in January 1988 through a Memorandum of Understanding executed by the heads of audit organizations throughout the North Pacific. APIPA’s membership presently includes the FSM Government, each of the FSM’s four State Governments (i.e. Yap, Chuuk, Pohnpei, and Kosrae), the Republic of the Marshall Islands, the Republic of Palau, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, the U.S. Territory of Guam, American Samoa, the Independent State of Samoa, the Republic of Fiji, and the U.S. Virgin Islands.