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IESBA Proposes Revisions to The International Code of Ethics for Professional Accountants

The International Ethics Standards Board for Accountants has released an exposure draft with the aim of enhancing the robustness of the code and also its relevance in a rapidly changing technological environment.

The proposed revisions to the code aim to help both the behaviour and mindset of accountants as they navigate their way through the impact technology is having on both their work processes and the services they provide.

"Technological innovation is transforming the world of business and professional services in ways we would never have imagined even a decade ago," said IESBA Chair Ms. Gabriela Figueiredo Dias.

"Technology is not neutral, and professional accountants' working relationship with it must be shaped by ethics. These timely proposals are designed to emphasize and strengthen the ethical principles that should guide them as they navigate the challenges and take advantage of the opportunities created by these developments, recognizing ultimately their responsibility to act in the public interest."

The proposals:

  • Draw special attention to the professional competence and confidentiality imperatives of the digital age.
  • Address the ethical dimension of professional accountants' reliance on, or use of, the output of technology in carrying out their work.
  • Further enhance considerations relating to threats from the use of technology as well as considerations relating to complex circumstances in applying the Code's conceptual framework.
  • Strengthen and clarify the International Independence Standards (IIS) with respect to technology-related non-assurance services (NAS) firms may provide to their audit clients or technology-related business relationships they may enter into with their audit clients.
  • Explicitly acknowledge that the IIS that apply to assurance engagements are applicable to assurance engagements on non-financial information, for example, environmental, social, and governance (ESG) disclosures.

All stakeholders need to comment on the draft exposure by June 20th 2022 and the revised provisions will come into effect in December 2022.

More details can be found here

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