The Department of Finance (DoF) – Abu Dhabi has received an Adam Smith award in the ‘Best in Class Treasury Solution in the Middle East' category; during the eighth "Adam Smith" award presentation ceremony.
The awards are organised annually by Treasury Today, a magazine which specialises in financial affairs and capital markets.
DoF – Abu Dhabi received the award for its implementation of a Treasury Single Account (TSA), which plays a key role in improving transparency and enhancing the efficiency of government financial operations. The Adam Smith Awards programme is recognised as one of the ultimate international benchmarks for achievements in corporate treasury. The awards are presented to financial institutions to celebrate their innovation, creativity and excellence in the corporate treasury sector. The awards ceremony was attended by over 200 treasury officials and financial experts from 23 countries across the world.
Commenting on this award-win, Hamad Al Hurr Al Suwaidi, Chairman of DoF- Abu Dhabi stressed the Department's commitment to fulfilling the vision of the UAE's wise leadership to develop the financial management system under decentralisation, standardise financial policies and accounting systems, as well as implement best practices for the TSA. The TSA plays an important role in strengthening the ability of government entities to manage their budgets efficiently, ensuring accountability and control over public spending.
Al Suwaidi said: "DoF- Abu Dhabi seeks to implement an effective and efficient financial management system by working in accordance with a unified government vision, as well developing the Emirate's financial infrastructure and framework. This helps to enhance the government's financial operations, raise transparency levels and also enables the Department to plan according to accurate data in order to support sustainable development and economic prosperity within the Emirate of Abu Dhabi."
He continued: "TSA improves the efficiency of managing costs, expenses and receipts, and facilitates a standardised financial reporting framework as well as a level of autonomy for government entities. This in turn enhances DoF's role in the process of developing financial policies."
Salah Mohamed Al Weswasi, Executive Director of Policy and Financial Systems Sector at DoF- Abu Dhabi said: "Developing a TSA will result in adopting a zero-based balanced system for all financial transactions. The required balance for payments and cash by government entities which fund their operational and capital operations from the general budget of the Abu Dhabi Government will be transferred on a daily basis to their secondary accounts from DoF's central account. This will ensure that payments are timely and surpluses are collected, monitored and managed effectively."
The panel of judges of the Adam Smith Awards base their assessment on a number of elements when selecting winners from financial institutions located in Europe, North and South America, Africa and the Middle East. The assessment includes evaluating the systems and programmes in place for the optimal use of resources and highest return on investment, in addition to the approved framework for the structure and organisation of the treasury department. The judges also assess these institutions' ability to enhance the speed and efficiency of their financial operations based on the latest IT systems as well as solutions which are specifically customised to achieve the highest levels of efficiency and quality in financial operations.