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Audit report

To the readers of Statistics New Zealand's financial statements and statement of service performance for the year ended 30 June 2008

The Auditor-General is the auditor of Statistics New Zealand (the Department). The Auditor-General has appointed me, J R Smaill, using the staff and resources of Audit New Zealand, to carry out the audit of the financial statements and statement of service performance of the Department on his behalf for the year ended 30 June 2008.

Unqualified opinion

In our opinion:

The audit was completed on 30 September 2008 and is the date at which our opinion is expressed. The basis of our opinion is explained below. In addition, we outline the responsibilities of the Government Statistician and the Auditor, and explain our independence.

Basis of opinion

We carried out the audit in accordance with the Auditor-General’s Auditing Standards, which incorporate the New Zealand Auditing Standards.

We planned and performed the audit to obtain all the information and explanations we considered necessary in order to obtain reasonable assurance that the financial statements and statement of service performance did not have material misstatements, whether caused by fraud or error.

Material misstatements are differences or omissions of amounts and disclosures that would affect a reader’s overall understanding of the financial statements and statement of service performance. If we had found material misstatements that were not corrected, we would have referred to them in our opinion.

The audit involved performing procedures to test the information presented in the financial statements and statement of service performance. We assessed the results of those procedures in forming our opinion.

Audit procedures generally include:

  • determining whether significant financial and management controls are working and can be relied on to produce complete and accurate data;
  • verifying samples of transactions and account balances;
  • performing analyses to identify anomalies in the reported data;
  • reviewing significant estimates and judgements made by the Government Statistician;
  • confirming year-end balances;
  • determining whether accounting policies are appropriate and consistently applied; and
  • determining whether all financial statement and statement of service performance disclosures are adequate.

We did not examine every transaction, nor do we guarantee complete accuracy of the financial statements and statement of service performance.

We evaluated the overall adequacy of the presentation of information in the financial statements and statement of service performance. We obtained all the information and explanations we required to support our opinion above.

Responsibilities of the Government Statistician and the Auditor

The Government Statistician is responsible for preparing the financial statements and statement of service performance in accordance with generally accepted accounting practice in New Zealand. The financial statements must fairly reflect the financial position of the Department as at 30 June 2008 and the results of its operations and cash flows for the year ended on that date. The statement of service performance must fairly reflect, for each class of outputs, the Department’s standards of delivery performance achieved and revenue earned and expenses incurred, as compared with the forecast standards, revenue and expenses adopted at the start of the financial year. The Government Statistician’s responsibilities arise from the Public Finance Act 1989.

We are responsible for expressing an independent opinion on the financial statements and statement of service performance and reporting that opinion to you. This responsibility arises from section 15 of the Public Audit Act 2001 and the Public Finance Act 1989.

Independence

When carrying out the audit we followed the independence requirements of the Auditor-General, which incorporate the independence requirements of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of New Zealand.

Other than the audit, we have no relationship with or interests in the Department.

J R Smaill
Audit New Zealand
On behalf of the Auditor-General
Wellington, New Zealand

Matters relating to the electronic presentation of the audited financial statements

This audit report relates to the financial statements of Statistics New Zealand for the year ended 30 June 2008 included on Statistics New Zealand’s website. The Government Statistician is responsible for the maintenance and integrity of Statistics New Zealand’s website. We have not been engaged to report on the integrity of Statistics New Zealand’s website. We accept no responsibility for any changes that may have occurred to the financial statements since they were initially presented on the website.

The audit report refers only to the financial statements named above. It does not provide an opinion on any other information which may have been hyperlinked to/from these financial statements. If readers of this report are concerned with the inherent risks arising from electronic data communication they should refer to the published hard copy of the audited financial statements and related audit report dated 30 September 2008 to confirm the information included in the audited financial statements presented on this website.

Legislation in New Zealand governing the preparation and dissemination of financial statements may differ from legislation in other jurisdictions.

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