Audit watchdogs seek international co-operation

The FRC has organised a meeting in London today of audit watchdogs from 13
countries to discuss ways of improving cross-border co-operation.

Financial regulators have been facing increasing industry discontent as
differing rules drive up the cost of compliance across various jurisdictions for

One idea being proposed at the meeting is to create a co-ordinating body for
audit regulators that would sit alongside the International Organisation of
Securities Commissions, the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision, and the
International Association of Insurance Supervisors.

However, efforts to improve regulatory co-ordination will be hampered by
differing national views on the issues of investor protection and market
integrity, legal and political constraints, and the links between financial
regulation and fiscal and tax rules.

The Financial Times reports Paul Boyle, chief executive of the FRC,
as saying: ‘you can say the last thing the world needs is yet another
international organisation, but there is something it need even less than that:
a whole series of national regulators coming up with conflicting requirements’.

He added that in a globalised marketplace there are more ‘multinational audit
firms auditing multinational clients and that’s why you need a co-ordinated

Representatives of the PCAOB, the FRC and watchdogs from Germany, France,
Japan and elsewhere are due to attend today’s meeting, alongside policy-makers
from the EU, the World Band and the International Organisation of Securities

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