PracticeAccounting FirmsE&Y joins ‘dirty list’ of Burma firms

E&Y joins 'dirty list' of Burma firms

Ernst & Young has been included on the latest 'dirty list' of companies that operate out of the military dictatorship of Burma.

Link: PwC has ‘blood on its hands’

The Big Four firm joined the list after the Burma Campaign pressure group discovered that E&Y has an associated company – U Tin Win Group – that operates in the country. Fellow Big Four firm PricewaterhouseCoopers has been on the list since last year.

Mark Farmaner, spokesman for the campaign, said E&Y was surprised to be included.

Since PwC has been on the list, some of its clients have expressed concern, and Farmaner said at least one planned to write raising concerns with the firm.

This may have contributed to the decision by senior partner Kiaran Poynter to write to Farmaner, indicating a possible cessation of operations in the area. ‘One member of the PwC network does have an ownership interest in an entity operating in Burma, but we understand that such interest is in the process of being re-evaluated,’ the letter said.

Farmaner said he would publicise E&Y’s involvement with all the Burma campaign groups, of which there are 13 in Europe alone. He hopes that, when coupled with US sanctions coming into effect on 28 August, E&Y will reconsider its position.

E&Y confirmed that clients in countries without a trade embargo against Burma are referred to U Tin Win, which it described as ‘a technical assistance firm’.

A spokesman said: ‘Neither Ernst & Young global nor any of its firms has any interest whatsoever in the technical assistance firm.’

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