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Indonesian State Auditors: “Companies Are Not Reporting Their Haul” Indonesia, September 4, 12

The Supreme Audit Agency (BPK) plans to audit government revenue from the fisheries and maritime sector in an effort to discover why revenues do not meet the potential.

“So far, there hasn’t been any audit related to maritime income, but we will do it soon,” BPK member Ali Masykur Musa said at the opening of a technical meeting with the Jawatan Audit Malaysia (JAN) at the Senggigi Sheraton Hotel in West Lombok, West Nusa Tenggara, on Monday.

The potential of the fisheries sector in the country is huge, Ali said, with the country having more than 17,000 islands comprising up to 80,000 kilometers of coastline.

However, in 2011, the sector only contributed USD 3.35 billion, far below Vietnam’s USD 25.5 billion income from the same sector.

“We will look into it [the fisheries sector]. We hope the audit will save state income from the fisheries sector,” Ali said.

The BPK will mainly target the Maritime and Fisheries Ministry in the audit, adding that stakeholders related to the sector would also be scrutinized, like permit holders.

“There might be companies that didn’t report their haul. This would decrease state income,” he said.

Ali said that the audit method would follow that of the mining sector, which has been running for three years. The agency recovered Rp 1.2 trillion (USD 125.88 million) in state losses in the first year of the mining audit. Consecutively, it returned Rp 488 billion and Rp 428 billion in the following years to the state treasury.

Deputy auditor general for Malaysia’s audit agency, Anwari Bin Suri, attended the meeting, along with Indonesian Environment Minister Balthasar Kambuaya and West Nusa Tenggara Governor Zainul Majdi.

The Environment Ministry supports the BPK in investigating all cash flow related to the maritime sector.

“I hope this meeting will encourage transparency, accountability and environmental management for the sake of the people’s welfare,” he said.

The meeting in Lombok was the 10th held to discuss implementation of parallel audits related to illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing and export taxes.

It is a follow up to a 2007 agreement between the BPK and JAN.

Parallel audits conducted by the BPK and JAN include forest management audits in 2007 to 2009, mangrove management audits in the Straits of Malacca in Malaysia from 2009 to 2011.

The illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing audit report will be presented by the BPK and JAN to the Asian working group on environmental audit (ASOSAI-WGEA) in mid-September in Penang, Malaysia.