The Chamber of Financial Auditors of
Romania (Camerei Auditorilor Financiari din România –
) is celebrating its 10th anniversary this year and
reflecting on achievements that include being admitted as a full
member of the International Federation of Accountants (IFAC).

The chamber also recently signed a memorandum
of understanding (MoU) with the Institute of Chartered Accountants
of Scotland (ICAS).

The relationship between CAFR and ICAS dates
from the foundation of the Romanian organisation. ICAS, aided by
funding from the UK Department of International Development, helped
establish CAFR.

This assistance included setting up quality
control and audit inspection systems. CAFR president Ion Mihailescu
said the chamber was the first Romanian professional body to
establish a special operational department designed to monitor the
activity of its members.

ICAS also monitored the chamber’s activity and
supported its application to join IFAC.

The new MoU focuses on areas for future
co-operation, again including quality control and audit monitoring,
plus assistance from ICAS in improving various CAFR departments and

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The two organisations will also work together
on education.

Commenting on the arrangement, ICAS chief
executive Anton Colella said: “The accounting profession is
increasingly a global profession and strong European institutes are
vital to ensuring that investors, wherever they are, can have
confidence in the financial information that they use. Sharing
experience can only help to improve this.”

CAFR was established following recognition
that reform of the accounting profession was an essential part of
the wider Romanian economic and institutional reform that was
needed to build a functional and competitive market economy,
Mihailescu told The Accountant.

At the time, Romania’s financial institutions
were pushing for the development of modern legislation that
complied with European standards on audit.

They also wanted a reliable professional
institution that would be capable of ensuring the effective
administration of the audit profession.

As a result, the Romanian Government passed
legislation in 1999 that brought the chamber into being.

CAFR’s responsibilities include organising
qualifying exams for auditors, co-ordinating audit activity,
overseeing continuous professional development programmes,
monitoring audit activity and updating auditing procedures in line
with the changes in the regulations at a European and international

The chamber has 3,100 individual members, more
than 900 audit firms and more than 2,000 trainees.

There is a second professional accountancy
body in Romania, the Body of Expert and Licensed Accountants of
Romania, plus two other professional bodies in related fields – the
Chamber of Tax Advisors or the National Association of Romanian

The challenges facing the Romanian profession
are much the same as those facing the rest of the world, according
to Mihailescu.

For example, the global economic crisis has
spread to Romania and this has brought to the fore the importance
of audit engagements that provide quality and reliable information,
Mihailescu said.

Other high priorities for the chamber include
the continual improvement of auditors’ professional competence
through sustained effort in education and continuous professional

Also, the proper observance of ethical
principles and international standards issued by IFAC and the
assurance of the quality control within audit firms through
monitoring by the CAFR and Romania’s Public Oversight Board.