Proposals For Changes To The Accounting Regulatory Framework

Posted on: 09/04/2021

 

The Accountancy Board refers to recent comments made in the media to the effect that no action has yet been taken by it with respect to proposals for change submitted to it by the Malta Institute of Accountants.

 

The Board wishes to clarify that it is involved in frequent communications with both the Institute and other interested stakeholders and that it does take any and all proposals into account in considering possible improvements to the accounting regulatory framework.  A step forward in this direction was a recent Board decision to set up a formal sub-committee, including also representatives of the Institute, to review the Accountancy Profession Act and the Regulations and Directives issued under it

However, it is to be kept in mind that, prior to their enactment, any proposed changes are first to be subjected to sufficient public consultation and deliberations, if not also to European Union pre-requirements. All these take their time (e.g a proposed agreed expanded definition of ‘accountant’ is currently being subjected to Proportionality Testing in accordance with European Union legislation).

Other proposals made may also  be so debatable or controversial  among  the various  European Union Member States that only a few (two or three Member States) have as yet adopted them (e.g. the NOCLAR proposal as promulgated by the International Ethics Standards Board for Accountants , which  alters the current balance between the need for client confidentiality and the corresponding need for disclosure in the public interest, tilting the balance away from client confidentiality).  The Board believes that any regulatory changes must primarily  be effected in the best interests of the public, but it must also be ensured that they do not result in being  prejudicial to the accountancy profession itself and eventually, the general public it serves.

On a final note, the Board reiterates its consistent position that it exercises its regulatory functions in full compliance with Maltese and European Union legislation and in full respect of the fundamental human rights of the person.