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IAASA Annual Report 2017 Highlights

Irish Auditing and Accounting Supervisory Authority [IAASA]

Extract From IAASA Annual Report for 2017

IAASA’s recently issued Annual Report for 2017 describes its very significant remit and the wide ranging activities it undertakes.

The following is a summary of the key responsibilities of IAASA

  • IAASA is responsible for the supervision of the accounting profession in Ireland, comprising of 38,008 members of Prescribed Accountancy Bodies (‘PABs’) in business and practice in the State. A PAB is an accountancy body that comes within IAASA’s supervisory remit. At 31 December 2017, there were nine PABs i.e. ACCA; AIA; CIMA; CIPFA; CPA; ICAEW; ICAI; ICAS; and IIPA. A Recognised Accountancy Body [RAB] of which there are six i.e. ACCA, CPA, ICAEW, ICAI, ICAS and IIPA. is a body of accountants that may authorise its members/member firms to practice as auditors in Ireland. In addition to the approval and registration of their members/member firms as auditors, SI 312 assigns responsibility to the RABs for continuing education, quality assurance and the investigation and discipline of auditors, to the extent that such activities are not required to be carried out by IAASA in respect of the audit of PIE
  • IAASA is the competent authority for the oversight of statutory auditors in Ireland, including oversight of the manner in which the six Recognised Accountancy Bodies (‘RABs’) perform the functions assigned to them in law in respect of statutory auditors, namely approval and registration, continuing education, quality assurance systems and investigative and administrative disciplinary systems.
  • In addition, IAASA has direct responsibility for the inspection of audits of Public Interest Entities (‘PIEs’), comprising of entities with securities listed on a regulated market, credit institutions and insurance undertakings. IAASA directly regulate nine auditing and accounting firms, including all of the Big 4, in respect of this element of their work.
  • IAASA is responsible for examining the level of compliance of certain entities’ annual and half-yearly financial reporting with applicable financial reporting standards (in the main International Financial Reporting Standards (‘IFRS’) and Irish Generally Accepted Accounting Practice (‘GAAP’)). This comprises 107 entities, made up of:

    • 31 equity issuers, whose market capitalisation at 31 December 2017 was €136bn;
    • 61 debt issuers, with gross assets in excess of €304bn; and
    • 15 closed-ended fund issuers, with gross assets in excess of €4bn.

  • IAASA is responsible for the conduct of investigations on issues arising from its inspection of the audits of PIEs and referrals from overseas competent authorities.
  • IAASA also has the discretionary power to investigate whether a member of a PAB has complied with that body’s standards and to investigate whether a prescribed accountancy body has complied with its approved investigation and disciplinary process.
  • IAASA is responsible for adopting standards on auditing, ethics and internal quality control for all auditors.
  • IAASA carries out a range of other activities, including registration of certain types of liquidators, registration and oversight of third country auditors, engaging with our peer European and international counterparts, and advising the Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation on key auditing and accounting matters.