Report on the Audit Committee Survey published – increased demand for audit committee expertise in accounting and auditing

The findings of the Audit Committee Survey, published by the Finnish Patent and Registration Office (PRH) and the Financial Supervisory Authority (FIN-FSA), indicate that continuously changing legislation and the economic environment make the responsibilities of audit committees more demanding in terms of workload and time management. The more prominent role of the audit committee and the increasing complexity of financial reporting require strong competence in accounting and audit matters.

Based on the survey results, the PRH and FIN-FSA wish to draw attention to the following:

  • Audit committees’ role is to support the decision-making and efficient working of the board of directors.
  • There is an increased demand for audit committee expertise and independence.
  • Effective audit committees have clearly defined procedures.
  • Audit committees play a key role in the selection of the auditor.
  • Audit committees should monitor auditing and the auditor’s independence on a regular basis.
  • Audit quality indicators serve as a tool for audit committees in selecting and monitoring the auditor.
  • Audit committees play an important role in contributing to the integrity of financial reporting.

The EU Audit Reform strengthened the role of audit committees, and many requirements that had previously been seen as best practice are now enforceable law. The EU Commission encourages regulators to engage with audit committees and help make them aware of their new responsibilities and more prominent role. An EU-level Audit Committee Survey was prepared by the Committee of European Auditing Oversight Bodies (CEAOB) with the objective of helping regulators to better understand how audit committees are operating and what challenges they are facing in carrying out their responsibilities. The PRH and FIN-FSA collaborated in conducting the CEAOB Audit Committee Survey in 2019. The PRH is responsible for audit-related market monitoring tasks. FIN-FSA is responsible for monitoring and assessing the performance of audit committees. The survey questionnaire was sent to audit committees and boards of directors, responsible for carrying out audit committee tasks, of public interest entities (listed companies, credit institutions and insurance companies). The report provides a summary and an analysis of 122 responses.

Read Report on the Audit Committee Survey – February 2020 (pdf, 2.62 Mt)

Also read press releases and publications published by FIN-FSA.

For more information, please contact:

Ms Riikka Harjula, Director, PRH, riikka.harjula(at)prh.fi or tel. +358 295 095 921

Ms Tiina Visakorpi, Head of Division, FIN-FSA, tiina.visakorpi(at)fiva.fi or tel. +358 400 606734

Printable version
Latest update 24.02.2020