PCAOB Signs an Agreement with the Audit Regulator in Greece
The Public Company Accounting Oversight Board made an announcement that it has now entered to a cooperative arrangement together with Hellenic Accounting and Auditing Standards Oversight Board in relation to oversight of audit firms subject to regulators and regulatory jurisdictions. The agreement is expected to immediately take effect.
The Chairman of PCAOB, James Doty in a statement said that the agreement with the audit regulator in Greece shows the shared commitment of improving the quality of audit and also protect investors by cross border cooperation. Dotty added that PCAOB continues to work attaining cooperative arrangements with counterparts in the remaining European jurisdictions where the board has failed to conduct inspections.
PCAOB has attained similar agreements with Hungary, Sweden, European Union, Germany, United Kingdom, France, Denmark and Spain.
The HAASOB agreements offers a framework for joint inspections thereby allowing for exchange of confidential information in accordance to provisions of the 2010 Consumer Protection Act and the Reform of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street. The provisions enabled the 2002 Sarbanes-Oxley Act to allow the PCAOB in sharing confidential information with the non-U.S colleagues under particular circumstances. A data protection agreement is also a part of the cooperative arrangement.
The agreement is a reflection of the ongoing efforts of attaining cooperative agreements with the regulators of the remaining European Union members. The PCAOB has carried out inspections in 45 jurisdictions that are non –U.S based. When possible, the Board seeks in coordinating the local authority inspections in order to enhance cooperation and information sharing.
Under the Act of Sarbanes-Oxley, PCAOB inspects and oversees all accounting firms which audit regularly the audit public companies whose stocks trade in the markets based in U.S. The board is expected to carry out annual inspections for firms that constantly offer audit reports for more than 100 issuers and for firms that constantly offer audit reports, at least triennially to 100 or fewer issuers. Out of the approximate 2,300 audit firms that are presently registered with PCAOB, 900 of them have their location outside the United States and including six firms whose registration is in Greece.