During the 19th Assembly Meeting of the INTOSAI Working Group on Environmental Auditing, held in Bangkok on 6 – 9 August 2019, Mr. William Peplow (Senior Audit Manager – National Audit Office, Malta) and Mr. Akis Kikas (Senior Principal Auditor  - National Audit Office, Republic of Cyprus) delivered the presentation on the cooperative audit: Are mechanisms in place for the designation and effective management of Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) within the Mediterranean Sea? One hundred and fifty delegates from 49 Supreme Audit Institutions (SAIs) participated in this Assembly meeting.

This cooperative audit based its findings and conclusions on seven individual national audit reports which were compiled by the SAIs of Albania, Cyprus, France, Greece, Malta, Portugal and Slovenia. SAIs Malta and Cyprus coordinated this project.

The focus of this cooperative audit was to determine the extent to which countries in the Mediterranean region are effectively conserving marine biodiversity to attain the targets set in national legislation and international protocols. The audit identified that the necessary mechanisms for designating and effective management of MPAs were not always in place to achieve the desired equilibrium between the sustainability of MPAs and blue growth. 

The National Audit Office Malta presented the national and cooperative audit reports to Parliament on 30 January 2018 and 10 July 2019 respectively.

Both Reports are available on the NAO’s portal: http://nao.gov.mt/en/recent-publications

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