The State Audit of Vietnam (SAV) will give priority to auditing the State budget this year, according to remarks made at a conference in Hanoi on Jan. 24.

The agency said it would keep a close eye on all fields, ranging from projects which have been invested in by the State budget, capital utilisation, the management of State-owned groups and enterprises and projects that are being financed by banking institutions.

The audit will provide information to the Communist Party and National Assembly.

The group will carry out 151 inspections this year in 34 provinces and cities and at 20 ministries and central-level agencies. The SAV will also process five special audits, while monitoring 28 groups, businesses and financial-banking institutions. The group will also audit 39 building projects, eight national target programmes and 16 offices in the national defence and security sectors, which will be a year-on-year increase of 15.2 percent.

SAV Chief Auditor Vuong Dinh Hue said they will audit Electricity of Vietnam (EVN); mining giant Vinacomin, in order to provide a basis for the calculation of prices of power and coal according to market mechanism; and Vietnam Shipbuilding Industry Group (VINASHIN) will all be audited.

Hue said the agency will focus on improving the professional skill and political spirit of auditors as well as promoting and diversifying the application of information and technologies in tandem with simplifying administrative procedures in the auditing sector.

Speaking at the conference, the National Assembly (NA)'s vice chairman Nguyen Duc Kien asked the agency to specify tasks and accelerate strategies to develop the auditing sector by 2020.

The agency's activities should be congruent with the NA's programmes and be active in implementing its tasks, improving its role within the State and society, Kien said.

He said SAV should pay attention to training and improving the quality of its auditors in accordance with standards stipulated in the Law on State Audit. /.