The Public Company Accounting Oversight Board hosted nearly 80 representatives of auditor oversight bodies from 37 foreign jurisdictions last week during its sixth annual International Auditor Regulatory Institute.
The Institute took place in Washington, D.C., on Nov. 5-7, 2012. It afforded participants the opportunity to learn about PCAOB audit oversight programs, international inspection considerations, and current topics in enforcement and standard setting. Participants also exchanged views on a variety of issues that have an impact upon the oversight of auditors around the world.
"In cooperation with foreign audit regulators, we are revolutionizing what it means to engage in cross-border audit oversight and, in the process, overcoming legal and organizational impediments to sharing information," said PCAOB Chairman James R. Doty.
"Auditing today is a global endeavor," he added. "Audit regulators can be significantly more effective when they work together, and the Institute contributes greatly to enhanced international cooperation."
Keynote speaker, Larry Thompson, Executive Vice President and General Counsel of PepsiCo and the former U.S. Deputy Attorney General, addressed "Perspectives on Enron, Global Fraud, Corporate Governance and the Role of Auditors and Audit Regulation."
The program also included a panel of officers of the International Forum of Independent Audit Regulators (IFIAR) that described the organization's strategy and programs. This panel included Paul George, chairman of IFIAR, and PCAOB Board Member Lewis H. Ferguson, who is IFIAR Vice Chairman.
Also on the program were a panel of PCAOB Board Members discussing their domestic and international priorities, and a panel of foreign inspectors describing their experiences in joint inspections with the PCAOB.
"The PCAOB maintains ongoing relationships with more than 50 foreign audit regulators. The Institute is an unparalleled opportunity to reinforce these relationships, and to continue to build new ones," said Bruce Wilson, PCAOB Director of International Affairs.
"In addition, our panelists from the PCAOB and from foreign audit regulators provided a window into the many new initiatives in audit oversight taking place in the United States and internationally," Wilson said.
There currently are more than 900 PCAOB-registered public accounting firms in 83 foreign jurisdictions. The PCAOB established the Institute in 2007 to provide a forum for open discussion among international regulators about approaches to auditor oversight and improvements to audit quality.