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Report on Annual Expenditures for Travel, Hospitality and Conferences for the year ending March 31, 2013

As required by the Treasury Board Directive for the Management of Expenditures on Travel, Hospitality and Conferences, this report provides information on the total annual expenditures for each of travel, hospitality and conferences for the Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada (OPC) for the fiscal year ending March 31, 2013.

This information is updated annually and does not contain information withheld under the Access to Information Act or the Privacy Act.

Expenditures on travel, hospitality and conferences incurred by federal departments and agencies are related to supporting departmental mandate(s) and the government's priorities.

In particular, for the OPC, this includes the delivery of the following core programs and/or services to Canadians:

  • The mandate of the OPC is overseeing compliance with both the Privacy Act, which covers the personal information-handling practices of federal government departments and agencies, and the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (PIPEDA), Canada’s private sector privacy law.
  • The mission of the OPC is to protect and promote the privacy rights of individuals.
  • TheOPC's major programs are:
    1. Compliance activities: the Office is responsible for investigation privacy-related complaints and responding to inquiries from individuals and organizations;
    2. Research and Policy development: the Office serves as a centre of expertise on emerging privacy issues in Canada and abroad by researching trends and technological developments, monitoring legislative and regulatory initiatives, providing legal, policy and technical analyses on key issues, and developing policy positions that advance the protection of privacy rights;
    3. Public Outreach: the Office delivers public education and communications activities, including speaking engagements and special events, media relations, and the production and dissemination of promotional and educational material; and
    4. Internal Services are groups of related activities and resources that support the needs of programs and other corporate obligations of an organization. As a small entity, the Office's internal services include two sub-activities: governance and management support, and resource management services (which also incorporate asset management services).

For more information on OPC’s programs please consult the Office’s 2013-14 Report on Plans and Priorities and the Office’s 2012-13 Departmental Performance Report.

The OPC incurs travel, hospitality and conference expenditures for activities directly related to its mandate. Since most privacy trends are global in nature, the OPC invests considerable efforts in developing and sustaining partnerships with data-protection authorities around the world, as well as international associations and regulators. OPC officials deliver numerous speeches to transfer knowledge about privacy to audiences in Canada and abroad.  The OPC carries out investigations and audit under both legislations the Privacy Act and the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act. Investigation and Audit work tends to involve travel because it often necessitates site visits in order to review materials and discuss issues with respondents. OPC also incurs travel costs related to public events and other professional development activities that are critical for staff to remain current with rapid evolutions within the privacy field.

Total annual expenditures for Travel, Hospitality and Conferences for the OPC are summarized below:

Expenditure Category Expenditures for the year ending, March 31, 2013
Expenditures for the year ending, March 31, 2012
(in thousands of dollars)
Travel – Public Servants 380.4 509.4 -129.0
Travel – Non-Public Servants 11.2 12.2 -1.0
Total Travel 391.6 521.6 -130.0
Hospitality 24.9 33.5 -8.6
Conference Fees 0.2 23.4 -23.2
TOTAL 416.7 578.5 -161.8

There is a significant reduction of expenditures in each of the three categories in fiscal year 2012-13 compared to the previous fiscal year.  The reductions are largely due to the result of active and ongoing management of the Office's expenditures for travel, hospitality and conference fees.


  1. Public Servants: Compared to fiscal year 2011–12, OPC’s travel expenditures by public servants decreased mainly due to continuous efforts aimed at reducing costs by streamlining operational processes such as use of videoconference and teleconference. OPC did not participate in all the workshops that were offered during the previous fiscal year.
  2. Non-Public Servants: Compared to fiscal year 2011-12, there was no significant variance in the OPC travel expenditures by non-public servants.

HOSPITALITY: Compared to fiscal year 2011–12, OPC’s hospitality expenditures decreased mainly due to efforts aimed at reducing the cost of hospitality activities throughout the Office.

CONFERENCE FEES: Compared to fiscal year 2011–12, OPC’s conference fees expenditures decreased significantly due to a reduction in the number of events attended by OPC in 2012-13.

Approval by

(Original signed by)

Patricia Garand, CPA, CGA
Deputy Chief Financial Officer

(Original signed by)

Daniel Nadeau, CPA, CGA
Chief Financial Officer

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