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IESBA unveils ethics code changes to promote 'mindset'

The International Ethics Standards Board for Accountants (IESBA) is proposing changes to the International Code of Ethics for Professional Accountants (including International Independence Standards) to promote the role and mindset expected of all professional accountants. The Exposure Draft, Proposed Revisions to Promote the Role and Mindset Expected of Professional Accountants, puts forward changes that further strengthen the Code.

The proposed revisions respond to stakeholder calls for the IESBA to explore whether and how the Code could contribute to strengthening the application of concepts underlying professional scepticism by all professional accountants.

Among other matters, the proposals:

  • Highlight professional accountants’ wide-ranging role in society and the relationship between compliance with the Code and a professional accountant’s responsibility to act in the public interest;
  • Include enhancements to the robustness of the fundamental principles of integrity, objectivity and professional behaviour;
  • Further strengthen the Code through requiring professional accountants to have an inquiring mind when applying the conceptual framework; and
  • Highlight the importance of being aware of bias and having the right organizational culture.

The proposals were developed in coordination with the International Auditing and Assurance Standards Board and the International Accounting Education Standards Board. The IESBA will host a webinar in September 2019 to provide an overview of the proposed revisions and invites comment on the Exposure Draft by 31 October 2019.

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