Heritage and Milestones
Heritage and Milestones
Establishment of the Crown Colony of the British Empire
This was the year that the Straits Settlements were made a Crown Colony of the British Empire. During this period, the Lieutenant-Governor of Penang reported on the revenue and expenditure of the settlements. Mr William Willans Willans was the Treasurer for the Crown Colony.
Appointment of the First Straits Settlements Accountant-General
As part of the financial reorganisation of the Colonial Governments, Mr W.C. Hodges was appointed as the first Straits Settlements Accountant-General, responsible for collecting revenue and accounting for revenue and expenditure.
Preparation of First Set of Financial Statements for the Crown Colony of Singapore
Mr N. M. Kennedy took over in 1947 and prepared the first set of financial statements for the Crown Colony of Singapore for the year 1946.
Appointment of First Local Accountant-General
Mr Chua Kim Yeow became the first local Accountant-General. Mr Chua served as the Accountant-General for 19 years.
AGD as the “Central Banker”
The Accountant-General’s Department came under Singapore Government’s authority, as a department of Ministry of Finance. For 6 years after independence in 1965, AGD took on responsibilities of a “Central Banker” and performed the roles of Registrar of Loans, Deputy Foreign Exchange Controller and Commissioner of Banking. These functions were transferred from AGD to the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) when it was formed in 1971.
Mr Ang Teck Leong as Accountant-General
Mr Ang Teck Leong took over the helm from Mr Chua as Accountant-General for the next 5 years
Mr Chris Liew Peng Fook as Accountant-General
Mr Chris Liew Peng Fook took over as Accountant-General upon Mr Ang’s retirement and assumed the leadership position for 11 years.
Enactment of the Accountants Act
The enactment of the Accountants Act resulted in the splitting of the Singapore Society of Accountants into two separate entities – Public Accountants Board and Institute of Certified Public Accountants.
Presentation of the White Paper
The first White Paper on the protection of reserves was first conceived in 1988. AGD played a significant role in developing the initial set of principles and guidelines safeguarding past reserves.
Mr Goh Khee Kuan as Accountant-General
Mr Goh Khee Kuan became the Accountant-General in 1995.
Launch of the New Financial System (NFS@Gov)
The New Financial System (NFS@Gov) supports a wide range of mission-critical functions for the Whole-of-Government. This new system was initially developed as AGD’s solution to the worldwide millennium bug issue, instead of revising the system to a Y2K-compliant one. Currently, this integrated system provides budgeting, accounting, and financial management services, which cuts across agencies, operational processes and technology. The system has radically streamlined Government’s financial processes by leveraging on technology.
Ms Chua Geok Wah as Accountant-General
Ms Chua Geok Wah took over the role of Accountant-General for 15 years.
Launch of the Pay and Claims System (PaC@Gov)
PaC@Gov eliminated the need for physical pay slips and claim forms. The automated payroll system now allows civil servants to view their pay for the past 12 months, the year-to-date balance, and other information. They are also able to submit claims electronically, which results in time savings and reduces paperwork.
Launch of Vendors@Gov
Vendors@Gov is a secured one-stop online portal that allows Government vendors to conveniently submit and track the status of their E-invoices, enquire and update payment status and details anytime, anywhere across the globe. E-invoicing also enables suppliers to cut down on paper use. Prior to this, the Government would receive over 600,000 invoices from suppliers a year, equivalent to 1.35 million sheets of paper.
One of the value-adding innovations embedded within Vendors@Gov is the Bank Account Validation System (BAVS). Previously, vendors had to make personal trips to their banks for verification of bank account details GIRO application forms. To make it hassle-free, AGD worked with banks, Accounting & Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA) and the Immigration & Checkpoints Authority (ICA) to automate the validation of vendors’ bank accounts. This had saved much time and effort for multiple parties – vendors, banks, ministries and AGD.
Provision of Assurance Services to External Agencies
AGD Internal Audit team began extending its internal audit service offerings to external agencies, providing services to 2 agencies for a start. The team assists clients to examine and evaluate the adequacy and effectiveness of their internal controls in responding to organisational risks.
Today, the internal audit team provides services to 17 agencies, which span across various sectors. The team also organises seminars for public service internal auditors and participates in Whole-of-Government events.
Introduction of the Medical Billing System (MBS@Gov)
Through MBS@Gov, private clinics are able to efficiently submit claims for the Government’s share of medical bills incurred by civil servants, pensioners and their dependants at the clinics.
Launch of the Pensioner’s Portal
The portal provides Government pensioners with convenient access to useful pension-related information any time. Pensioners are able to view their pension advice for the past 2 years, as well as their medical and dental claims that will be updated on a weekly basis.
Establishing Accounting Standards for Statutory Boards
The Act empowers the Accountant-General to establish accounting standards for Statutory Boards, which required Statutory Board to prepare its financial statements in compliance with the accounting standards established by the Accountant-General.
Setting up of the Value-for-Money (VFM) Review Office
The VFM Review Office was set up by Cabinet to examine whether Government expenditures are achieving their intended outcomes in a cost-efficient manner.
With more autonomy given to Ministries in budgetary allocation and discretion over expenditures, there would be a need for measures to ensure greater accountability and signal emphasis on VFM in the use of public funds. As such, the objective of the VFM Review Office is to systematically evaluate the economy, efficiency and effectiveness of spending on programmes and activities of Ministries and Statutory Boards.
Launch of Demand Aggregation (DA) Scheme for Investments
The Demand Aggregation (DA) scheme was launched to provide an option for Ministries and Statutory Boards that would like to engage fund managers to manage their surpluses or trust monies. This initiative seeks to demand-aggregate investments so that agencies can enjoy economies of scale and gain easy access to professional fund management and investment consultancy services.
Implementation of Centralised Liquidity Management (CLM)
Through the CLM initiative, AGD centralises excess cash held by Statutory Board, manages and invests the excess cash on their behalf, generating higher returns on SBs’ cash and brings about substantial savings and efficiency gains for the public sector.
Mr Ow Fook Chuen as Accountant-General
The current Accountant-General, Mr Ow Fook Chuen, was appointed as Accountant-General in March 2015.
Launch of Fi@Gov
Fi@Gov is the public sector’s one stop financial analytics platform that provides insights and analysis for decision making, performance monitoring and governance.
Launch of Vendors@Gov Mobile App
Vendors@Gov Mobile App allows vendors to view their invoice statuses on-the-go, check their projected cash flows and receive notifications, in addition to functions that already exist on the Vendors@Gov portal.
Setting up of the Finance Academy
The Finance Academy serves as the training arm of the department to provide relevant training to our officers. The Academy also extends our training programmes to the public sector finance community to raise the capabilities of finance officers.
Launch of Pac@Gov Mobile App
Pac@Gov Mobile App allows public officers to view their pay information, submit claims and apply leave on-the-go.
Singapore Quality Class (SQC) - STAR
AGD is awarded SQC - Star for making significant improvements in the business excellence journey.
Head of Profession for Finance
Accountant-General has been appointed as the Head of Profession for Finance to professionalise finance officers working in the public sector.
Singapore Chartered Account (CA)
Accountant-General’s Department is now accredited to be an ATO under the Singapore Chartered Accountant (CA) Qualification framework and is now authorized to train candidates in their journey towards achieving CA (Singapore) designation for the next three years (expiry 26 January 2026).