The Fiscal Advisory Council is an independent body responsible for monitoring the fiscal discipline of government entities in Austria. Its 15 members are public finance experts that are mandated to act independently. Fiscal Advisory Council meetings are also attended – in an advisory capacity – by representatives of the Oesterreichische Nationalbank (OeNB) and the Parliamentary Budget Office as well as other experts. By establishing the Fiscal Advisory Council in 2013, Austria implemented relevant EU legislation (two-pack regulations, fiscal compact) that requires that all member states have in place independent fiscal institutions (IFIs).
The Office of the Fiscal Advisory Council is attached to the OeNB and, with a staff of six, supports Council members in fulfilling their tasks. The members of the Fiscal Advisory Council are appointed for a term of six years by the federal government, the Austrian Economic Chambers in agreement with the Austrian Chamber of Agriculture, the Federal Chamber of Labour, the Austrian Association of Municipalities, the Austrian Association of Cities and Towns and the Conference of Provincial Governors. The current members’ term of office runs from November 1, 2019, to October 31, 2025.
The predecessor organization of the Fiscal Advisory Council was the Committee for Contributing to Administering Government Debt – or Government Debt Committee – which convened for its inaugural meeting in March 1970. In the first years of its existence, the Government Debt Committee, which operated on the basis of the 1969 Postal Savings Bank Act (Postsparkassengesetz 1969), provided analyses and recommendations with regard to the central government’s debt management. Later, as Austria joined the EU in 1995 and the Stability and Growth Pact entered into force in 1997, the committee's fiscal surveillance tasks shifted toward monitoring Austria’s compliance with the constantly evolving EU fiscal framework.