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AASB Decision Summary – June 10 -11, 2019 Meeting

This summary of decision of the Auditing and Assurance Standards Board (AASB) has been prepared for information purposes only. Decisions reported are tentative and reflect only the current status of discussions on projects and other matters, which might change after further deliberations by the AASB. Decisions to publish exposure draft and Handbook material are final only after a formal voting process.

Canadian Auditing Standards (CASs)

Audit Evidence

The AASB decided to form an advisory group to provide input to the Board on issues as the International Auditing and Assurance Standards Board (IAASB) audit evidence project progresses. The Board discussed the size of the advisory group and relevant experience that members should have. The Board will issue a public call to identify and engage potential members.

Auditor Reporting – Key Audit Matter Reporting and Other Considerations

The AASB discussed key issues stakeholders raised on the Exposure Draft, “Communication of Key Audit Matters in the Auditor’s Report,” including:

  • the unique regulatory environment of entities that comply with National Instrument 81-106, Investment Fund Continuous Disclosure;
  • the benefits and challenges of key audit matter (KAM) reporting for other listed entities and investment funds; and
  • the proposed effective date.

The AASB also discussed academic research that was conducted during the exposure period to identify whether there are benefits to KAM reporting for users of TSX-V financial statements.

The Board expects to approve final Handbook material at its September 2019 meeting.

Auditor Reporting – Combined Report

The AASB discussed issues related to developing an auditor’s report that complies with the requirements of both Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB) standards and CASs. Key issues discussed include the differences between the PCAOB standards and CASs for:

  • the descriptions of auditor responsibilities and other information; and
  • critical audit matters versus KAMs.

The AASB concluded not to continue work on developing such a report due to the significant differences between the standards and the challenges in developing a report that would be understood. However, the Board agreed on future steps to address public interest issues that arise when there are separate PCAOB and CAS auditor’s reports on one set of financial statements.

Auditor Reporting – Engagement Partner Name

The AASB discussed the status of matters that gave rise to the deferral of paragraph 46 of CAS 700, Forming an Opinion and Reporting on Financial Statements, relating to disclosure of the engagement partner name in certain audit reports. The Board concluded that extension of the one-year deferral is not required. However, it will continue to monitor any issues related to inclusion of the engagement partner name in CAS auditor reports filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

Audits of Less Complex Entities

The AASB discussed the proposed plan to collect stakeholders’ feedback to inform its response to the IAASB’S Discussion Paper, “Audits of Less Complex Entities: Exploring Possible Options to Address the Challenges in Applying the ISAs.”

The Board will continue to discuss this project at future meetings.

Group Audits

The AASB provided input to the IAASB members from Canada about the IAASB’s project to revise ISA 600, Special Considerations — Audits of Group Financial Statements (Including the Work of Component Auditors). The Board discussed:

  • public interest issues;
  • use of the risk-based approach for planning and performing an audit of group financial statements;
  • proposed definitions of component, group financial statements and consolidation;
  • proposed structure and scope of revised ISA 600; and
  • proposed changes to the engagement acceptance and continuance and planning considerations.

The Board will continue to discuss this project at future meetings.

Identifying and Assessing the Risks of Material Misstatement

The AASB provided input to the IAASB members from Canada on issues related to proposed ISA 315 (Revised), Identifying and Assessing the Risk of Material Misstatement. The Board discussed the IAASB’s:

  • proposed approach to presenting the requirements and application material;
  • proposed changes to the requirements, application material, and appendices; and
  • proposed consequential amendments to ISA 200, Overall Objectives of the Independent Auditor and the Conduct of an Audit in Accordance with International Standards on Auditing.

The Board will continue to discuss this project at future meetings.

Quality Management

The AASB discussed its draft responses to the IAASB’s Exposure Draft for "Quality Management at the Firm and Engagement Level, Including Engagement Quality Reviews” which includes:

  • proposed International Standard on Quality Management (ISQM) 1, Quality Management for Firms that Perform Audits or Reviews of Financial Statements, or Other Assurance or Related Services Engagements;
  • proposed ISQM 2, Engagement Quality Reviews; and
  • proposed ISA 220 (Revised), Quality Management for an Audit of Financial Statements.

The AASB will review draft response letters at its conference call on June 25, 2019. The Chair and Director will review the final responses before submission.

Assurance and Related Services Standards (other than CASs)

Agreed-upon Procedures

The AASB discussed issues related to the IAASB’s project to revise International Standard on Related Services (ISRS) 4400 (Revised), Agreed-Upon Procedures Engagements. The Board noted that the issues raised in its response letter to the Exposure Draft of ISRS 4400 (Revised) are largely consistent with those raised by global stakeholders and are recognized by the IAASB Task Force as key issues to be addressed.

The Board will continue to discuss this project at future meetings.

Compilation Engagements

The AASB discussed key issues stakeholders raised on the Exposure Draft, “Compilation Engagements,” including:

  • the wording and format of the compilation engagement report;
  • the stand back requirement; and
  • the description of the basis of accounting.

At a future meeting, the Board will consider the effective date of the new standard and, if appropriate, approve the final standard.


AASB Due Process Manual

The AASB discussed issues related to developing a due process manual. It will continue to discuss issues and review a draft due process manual at future meetings.

AASB Strategic Plan

The AASB decided to form a working group to assist staff in the strategic planning process. The working group will assist the Board in developing a process and timeline, as well as identifying appropriate stakeholders to consult.