The Accountants Act and its subsidiary legislations are the governing legislations for the registration and oversight of Public Accounting Entities (PAEs) and Public Accountants (PAs).

The Accountants (Amendment) Act 2022 was passed by Parliament on 3 October 2022 and assented to by the President on 25 October 2022.

The amendments to the Accountants Act seek to enhance the audit regulatory regime and introduce measures for better compliance with professional requirements and standards for both PAEs and PAs.

Key Legislative Changes

Key changes Reasons for the amendments
Introduction of inspections on PAEs for compliance with quality control standards (QC inspections).

Allows ACRA to conduct statutory QC inspections on PAEs to ensure compliance with professional standards and the applicable legal and regulatory requirements, and to mandate remediation of lapses and impose sanctions on PAEs for significant lapses discovered during QC inspections.

Specify ACRA’s powers to conduct inspections on compliance with Anti-Money Laundering / Countering the Financing of Terrorism requirements by PAEs and PAs (AML/CFT inspections).

Gives ACRA powers to conduct inspections for compliance with AML/CFT requirements and to impose sanctions on PAEs and PAs if they fail to comply with these requirements.

Brings our regulatory regime into closer alignment with the international standards set by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF).
 Introduction of a tiered assessment framework for Practice Monitoring Programme and QC inspections and the corresponding orders that may be imposed  

Provides greater distinction within the grading system to drive improvements in PAEs’ and PAs’ compliance with professional standards.

 Provision of powers for the Public Accountants Oversight Committee to require a PA who has obtained a “Not Satisfactory” inspection outcome to disclose their audit inspection findings to the audit client of the inspected engagement.

Provides greater transparency of PAs’ inspection findings and enhances the ability of the audit committees to evaluate the quality and effectiveness of their auditor.

ACRA intends to impose such orders on audits of public interest entities. 

Implementation Timeline

The legislative changes will come into effect on 1 July 2023 with the passing of Accountants (Amendment) Act and its subsidiary legislations to operationalise the amendments. 

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