Supervision of Lithuania’s tourism sector insufficient, auditors say

DELFI / Šarūnas Mažeika

Auditors assessed how and using which means the State Department of Tourism under the Ministry of Economy implemented the observation and supervision of the tourism service providers. For the implementation of the mentioned and other functions the State Department of Tourism used LTL 2.6 million (EUR 0.753 million). However, after conducting the audit, it was stated that the observation and supervision of the tourism service providers was not being implemented properly – the planned inspections were not being performed and the system of risk assessment that would assist to examine if the service providers properly perform their duties and correspond with the requirements raised was not created. Moreover, the consulting system for enterprises that would ensure the good quality consultative support was still not launched by the State Department of Tourism.

Observations also were given regarding the activities of the Lithuanian National Accreditation Bureau under the Ministry of Economy as the expert training function implemented by this institution is not under the legal regulation.

Auditors also questioned the correctness of the settlement of the Ministry with the public body Enterprise Lithuania. Average settlement rate was being applied, not paid for the actual time for the services to be provided. According to the auditors, the mentioned way of settlement is not legitimate due to the fact that while providing services to the recipients of the services different amount of working hours is required. In total for the services to stimulate exports LTL 763,200 (EUR 221,000) was paid.

During the audit process, the Ministry as well as institutions under the Ministry took note of the National Audit Office observations and took steps towards implementing the recommendations. However, several mistakes cannot be corrected – money was spent irrationally, without compliance with the law. Furthermore, due to the inappropriate supervision of the service providers, the risk of the lawsuits for the country from the damage sustained persons emerges, the National Audit Office said.

National Audit Office of Lithuania annually conducts financial (regularity) audits of all the ministries and releases reports in the third quarter of every year.

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