PracticeAccounting FirmsICAEW may defy Commons committee

ICAEW may defy Commons committee

The next president of the ICAEW has said that the institute could defy the views of a powerful House of Commons committee if it does not agree with the MPs' views on financial reporting.

Peter Wyman, incoming president of the institute, told Accountancy Age that the Treasury select committee, investigating financial reporting following the Enron scandal, could reach conclusions which fail to consider international developments.

He said the institute would be ‘reluctant’ to agree with conclusions reached by MPs on the committee if they were ‘diametrically opposed to what IFAC or international regulators are proposing’.

‘One could envisage Treasury committee recommendations not taking into account international developments,’ said Wyman.

Presidents from the ICAEW, CIMA and ACCA appeared before the select committee in April to give evidence. All three bodies moved to emphasise the differences between US and UK financial reporting models.

They also sought to remind the committee of the responsibilities of other professions, such as analysts and credit rating agencies, in improving financial disclosure and corporate governance.

Leading representatives of the profession continue to urge the government to press ahead with the modernisation of company law, which they claim will address many issues under debate. Richard Mallet, director of technical developments at CIMA, has also called on the Financial Services Authority to write to directors reminding them of their responsibilities.

The ICAEW is the UK’s largest professional body representing over 120,000 chartered accountants in England and Wales.

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