Assurance practitioners

– what do you think about the latest proposed amendments to the International Code of Ethics for Professional Accountants?

The New Zealand Auditing and Assurance Standards Board (NZAuASB) is responsible for developing and issuing professional and ethical standards for assurance practitioners. 

Professional and Ethical Standard 1 (Revised), Code of Ethics for Assurance Practitioners issued by the NZAuASB is based on Part A and Part B of the Code of Ethics for Professional Accountants, issued by the International Ethics Standards Board for Accountants (IESBA).

The IESBA has announced completion of the major first phase of its strategic project to restructure the Code of Ethics for Professional Accountants (the Code). 

In addition, it has also released new proposals that will enhance and complete the fully restructured Code with strengthened ethics requirements for accountants. 

We would like to know your views about the proposed amendments to the Code as it applies to assurance practitioners. 

Comprised of three Exposure Drafts, the new proposals (note links no longer available):

1. Restructure select sections of the Code, including recently finalised provisions addressing practitioner’s response to non-compliance with laws and regulations (NOCLAR), long association of audit firm personnel with an audit or assurance client, and ethical issues that professional accountants in business often face.

 

2. Revise the safeguards-related provisions in the independence sections of the Code pertaining to non-assurance services provided to audit and assurance clients.

 

3. Clarify the applicability of professional accountants in business provisions to professional accountants in public practice.

 


You can get further information, as follows:

Read highlights of the main improvements to date, including details of how the different workstreams are being coordinated and related timelines in the IESBA Update.


Read More

Read the restructured and revised portions of the Code IESBA has agreed to so far.


Read More

These together with a compilation prepared by IESBA staff of the proposed restructured Code, Basis for Conclusions documents, mapping tables, and other resources are intended to support, among other things, your consideration of the EDs.

Your views on the international proposals are important, as the finalised proposals will affect New Zealand assurance practitioners. 

We are committed to adopting the International Code of Ethics as it applies to assurance practitioners, while ensuring those standards reflect our New Zealand conditions. This ensures we remain internationally competitive. 

Your views are important to help inform us when developing our response to the IESBA’s EDs, and when considering whether there are any compelling reasons for the proposals to be modified for application in New Zealand by assurance practitioners.

If we have not identified any compelling reasons for modifications to the IESBA’s draft of planned revisions to the international Code of Ethics—and the IESBA finalises the exposure drafts as they are—we will issue an equivalent amended Professional and Ethical Standard 1 (Revised) Code of Ethics for Assurance Practitioners. This will be with minimal changes only to reflect references, language and grammatical conventions we use in New Zealand. 

These IESBA exposure drafts are therefore your opportunity to comment on the amended Code of Ethics that will be issued in New Zealand. 

However, if we do identify compelling reason amendments to the international proposals, we will issue a NZAuASB exposure draft in New Zealand seeking your comments. 

How to comment

You can post your comments to:

Chief Executive
External Reporting Board
PO Box 11250
Manners Street Central
Wellington 6142

Or you can send your comments by email.

Your comments can be in an email or letter and can be formal or informal.

Please take note of the different dates when comments are due.

You can comment on any or all of the following.

  1. Send comments on the Safeguards ED to the NZAuASB by 24 March 2017, or send comments directly to the IESBA by 25 April 2017, with a copy to the NZAuASB.
  2. Send comments on the Applicability ED to the NZAuASB by 24 March 2017, or send comments directly to the IESBA by 25 April 2017, with a copy to the NZAuASB.
  3. Send comments on the Structure ED to the NZAuASB by 5 May 2017, or send comments directly to the IESBA by 25 May 2017, with a copy to the NZAuASB.