An audit of the General Relations (GR), International Business Development (IBD), Consular and Administration Programs was conducted in Bandar Seri Begawan, Brunei during the period June 11 and 12, 2001. This is the first audit of the Mission since it opened in 1996.
For a Mission with only one Canada-Based Staff, the Head of Mission (HOM) is performing admirably in having Canada one of, if not, the highest profile Mission in Brunei. In addition, he is doing a sound job in managing the eight Locally-Engaged Staff (LES) and ensuring all Program objectives are being achieved. He is emphasizing a need for incremental resources, a decision the Department must take based on what it expects from this Mission. The Audit Team's view is that the Mission should move towards being more "fiscally conservative" given the limited returns that might be expected by adding more resources.
The Public and Cultural Affairs component of this Program is very active. Extensive and positive media coverage on Canada is being generated thanks to the efforts of the HOM and a part-time Public Affairs consultant, on contract. The HOM believes a full-time Public Affairs Officer is needed. The Audit concludes there is adequate capacity within the Commercial Officer job packages to maintain a reasonable and cost-effective Program. The Audit Team believes the furthering of our already excellent image in Brunei would not necessarily translate into additional trade and investment opportunities.
This is the dominant Program at the Mission and is consuming the greater part of the HOM's time. The HOM is assisted by two capable and enthusiastic Officers who are both relatively new to the Mission and are eager to learn. There is a requirement to prepare a Mission Business Plan to serve as a guide for all business development activities and an accountability document for assessing the performance of the Program. More emphasis needs to be placed on the Trade Commissioner Service's New Approach to ensure Brunei is consistent in delivering the same quality of services provided by our other missions to Canadian business people.
The Consular Program is a small one but it is well managed. The Mission has not yet issued its first passport although it is equipped to do so. The Consular Contingency Plan needs to be updated. The Mission will be reviewing the number of wardens required to provide effective coverage of Brunei.
The Administration Program operates well, given the realities of micro-Mission life. However, goals and objectives need to be developed for the Section. The Hub and Spoke Agreement with Singapore needs to be strengthened, particularly with respect to Human Resources. There are issues that call for improved management of the Human Resources function. The Physical Resources, Finance and Information Management functions are all operating effectively.
There were 21 recommendations contained in this report, 17 of which applied to the Mission and four for which Headquarters is responsible for their implementation. The current status finds that the Mission has implemented eight of the recommendations and nine are in the process of being implemented. The four Headquarters recommendations are currently in the process of being implemented.
|International Business Development||0.5||3||3.5|
|Assets||Crown Leased||Crown Owned|
|LES Salaries (N012)||$186,692|
|CB Overtime (N011)||45,800|