Improving the Structure of the Code of Ethics for Professional Accountants — Phase 1

Exposure Draft, December 2015 issued by the issued by the International Ethics Standards Board for Accountants (IESBA)

“Improving the Structure of the Code of Ethics for Professional Accountants — Phase 1”

The Institute of Public Accountants (IPA) welcomes the opportunity to comment on the “Exposure Draft, Improving the Structure of the Code of Ethics for Professional Accountants – Phase 1” (the Code). In general, we support the changes to the structure of the Code and believe the changes will increase clarity and understanding of the fundamental principles and complying with the conceptual framework.

We do however, see some limitations to the enforceability of the Code, particularly amongst
individual professional accountants and professional accountants in business. Further,
independence requirements which are both enforced and scrutinised by the public, may continue to overshadow other important aspects of the Code (which we see as an unintended consequence).

The IPA is a professional organisation for accountants recognised for their practical, hands-on skills and a broad understanding of the total business environment. Representing more than 35,000 members in over 65 countries, the IPA represents members and students working in industry, commerce, government, academia and private practice. Through representation on special interest groups, the IPA ensures the views of its members are voiced with government and key industry sectors and makes representations to Government including the Australian Tax Office, Australian Securities and Investments Commission and the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority on issues affecting the profession and in the public interest.

To view the full submission, pease click here.

We have provided comments to specific questions raised in the proposed revision to the Code, included in Appendix A.

If you would like to discuss our comments, please contact me or our technical advisers Sonya Sinclair (sonya@ecorac.com.au) or Colin Parker (colin@gaap.com.au), GAAP Consulting.