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ICAEW responds to Public Accounts Committee report on local audit

Author: ICAEW

Published: 14 Jul 2021

Wednesday 14 July 2021: Responding to the Local auditor reporting on local government in England report published by the Public Accounts Committee, Alison Ring, ICAEW Public Sector Director, said:

“This report echoes many of our concerns about local financial reporting and audit in England. We agree there needs to be urgent action to improve the timeliness of local authority accounts, and to address the real risk of the local audit market collapsing because of its reliance on just eight firms, two of which are responsible for 70% of local audits.

“We support the PAC’s recommendations for making the local audit market more attractive to new firms, increasing the supply of appropriately qualified and trained auditors, and addressing the pressing need for an oversight body ahead of ARGA taking up the role in 2023. We are also very pleased that the PAC has recognised the need for government and local authorities to do more to improve the quality of council annual reports and financial statements and make them easier to understand.”