Mazars’ response to the draft audit reform Bill proposals

31 May 2022
Following the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy’s (BEIS) announcement on the draft audit reform Bill proposals, please find statements from Mazars below.

Phil Verity, Senior Partner:

“The government’s proposals on its draft audit reform Bill, while welcome, need to find an early and guaranteed space in the legislative programme. The Government should prioritise this measure as the proposed reforms have been subject to extensive consultation and are long overdue. We cannot afford further delay. It will now be important for Parliament to ensure that momentum on this measure is achieved. Mazars is committed to making the necessary investment to play its part in a more open audit market in line with the public interest.

“Audit and governance reform is essential, without delay. We need to create a successful sustainable economy and resilient capital markets in these challenging times. The government proposals strike a reasonable balance between promoting entrepreneurship and accountability. We support the proposals on Managed Shared Audit in the FTSE350 and FTSE350 directors confirming the effectiveness of controls through the Corporate Governance Code as well as the rise in thresholds before private businesses become public interest entities. We are disappointed, however, that the bill has not yet been published and that legislation is not proposed this year.”

David Herbinet, Global Head of Audit:

“We support the Government holding firm in going ahead with Managed Shared Audit, involving challenger firms in the FTSE350. This is a pragmatic, and long overdue, way forward after a thorough consultation. All the key players – firms, audit committees, the regulator and professional bodies – should now support this approach and to sit down together to work out how to make it happen in practice.  A four eyes approach to auditing is critical to ensuring the resilience of the capital markets at a time of global turbulence.”