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AASB Decision Summary – October 25, 2022

This summary of decisions 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 discussed issues related to the International Auditing and Assurance Standards Board’s (IAASB) project to revise International Standard on Auditing (ISA) 500, Audit Evidence.

Key issues included:

  • the revisions the IAASB made to the proposed changes to ISA 500 in finalizing its exposure draft; 
  • the conforming and consequential amendments related to ISA 500;
  • the matters related to the Canadian Exposure Draft, including the comment period and fatal-flaw review of the French translation; and
  • a review of the Canadian wrap-around document to be issued as part of the Canadian exposure draft.

The AASB approved the exposure draft, which it expects to issue in late November 2022, with a comment deadline of March 15, 2023.

Other Canadian Standards

CPA Canada Handbook – Assurance Revisions

In February 2021, the International Accounting Standard Board (IASB) revised International Accounting Standard (IAS) 1 Presentation of Financial Statements. IAS 1 now requires entities to disclose “material accounting policy information” rather than “significant accounting policies.” In June 2021, the Accounting Standards Board (AcSB) endorsed these revisions.

The AASB discussed how the revisions to IAS 1 necessitate revisions to the CPA Canada Handbook – Assurance. The following illustrative engagement letters, auditor’s reports, and practitioner’s review engagement report will require an editorial revision to reflect the IAS 1 change:

  • CAS 210, Agreeing the Terms of Audit Engagements, Appendix 1;
  • CAS 510, Initial Audit Engagements – Opening Balances, Appendix, Illustrations 1-2;
  • CAS 570, Going Concern, Appendix, Illustrations 1-3;
  • CAS 600, Special Considerations – Audits of Group Financial Statements (Including the Work of Component Auditors), Appendix 1;
  • CAS 700, Forming an Opinion and Reporting on Financial Statements, Appendix C1, Illustrations 1-3;
  • CAS 705, Modifications to the Opinion in the Independent Auditor’s Report, Appendix, Illustrations 1-5;
  • CAS 706, Emphasis of Matter Paragraphs and Other Matter Paragraphs in the Independent Auditor’s Report, Appendices 3-4;
  • CAS 710, Comparative Information – Corresponding Figures and Comparative Financial Statements, Appendix, Illustrations 1-4;
  • CAS 720, The Auditor’s Responsibilities Relating to Other Information, Appendix C2, Illustrations 1-7; and
  • Canadian Standard on Review Engagements 2400, Engagements to Review Historical Financial Statements, Appendix 3, Illustration 5.

These revisions will be included in a Handbook update to be issued in mid-December 2022. The revisions apply to audits and reviews of financial statements prepared in accordance with IFRS Accounting Standards, including the amendments to IAS 1, which are effective for annual reporting periods beginning on or after January 1, 2023.

Emerging Issues

The AASB discussed emerging issues in the audit and assurance environment. The information gathering and discussion served as the basis for determining whether the Board’s 2022-2023 Annual Plan remains appropriate and for informing the development of the 2023-2024 Annual Plan.

Key issues included:

  • emerging issues in the areas of sustainability and extended external reporting, technology, and evolving work;
  • confirming the AASB’s 2022-2023 Annual Plan remains appropriate;
  • supporting potential new activities the Board may consider in developing the 2023-2024 Annual Plan; and
  • recognizing other issues that may influence the development of the 2023-2024 Annual Plan identified during the emerging issues brainstorming session.


The AASB discussed establishing a Sustainability Assurance Committee to inform the Board’s work to support sustainability assurance.

Key issues included:

  • whether a committee was needed and whether a standing committee is an appropriate structure;
  • the Committee’s responsibilities, including:
    • exploring Canadian-specific issues related to sustainability assurance;
    • providing feedback on IAASB agenda materials;
    • supporting the AASB on future Canadian sustainability assurance standard setting; and
    • collaborating with the AcSB, PSAB, and the CSSB;
  • the Committee members’ expertise;
  • the desired composition of the Committee of primarily sustainability assurance providers (i.e., professional accountants and other professionals); and
  • a minimum three-year term of appointment, with an option to renew.

A public call for volunteers for this new Committee will be issued on the AASB’s website in mid-November.


The AASB received an update on the technology-related activities in the Board’s 2022-2023 Annual Plan and the application of its Technology Framework. The Board received a presentation from Erik Niemi, the Chair of CPA Canada’s Audit and Assurance Technology Committee (AATC).

Key issues included:

  • the AATC’s activities to update its Technology Landscape and to prioritize its actions for 2023;
  • the areas of assurance standards where practitioners require further guidance in using technology; and
  • other technology matters relevant to using assurance standards that may influence the AASB in developing its 2023-2024 Annual Plan.