The HK Institute of Certified Public Accountants is introducing a new whistleblowing policy to further strengthen its corporate governance framework. Reports on any suspected fraud, unlawful acts, impropriety, and irregularity in matters related to the Institute can be submitted to a dedicated email address or be marked “Strictly Confidential” and addressed to the Chairman of the Institute’s Audit Committee.

Proposed reform to audit regulation - update papers

In our November 2014 Update, we reported that the public comment period on a legislative proposal that would expand the regulation of auditors had closed in September 2014 and that a bill would be introduced in 2015. The proposed legislation would empower the Financial Reporting Council (FRC) to inspect and investigate listed entity auditors as well as grant it authority to exercise disciplinary power over these auditors and oversee certain functions of the HK Institute of Certified Public Accountants.

The FRC is due to give its annual briefing to the Legislative Council Panel on Financial Affairs on 4 May. For this purpose, two papers have been prepared: “Progress  Report on the work of the Financial Reporting Council” prepared by the FRC and “Background brief on the work  of the Financial Reporting Council” prepared by the Legislative Council Secretariat. The two papers provide detailed updates on the recent work of the FRC, including its response to the above mentioned legislative proposals.