US regulators are to meet Chinese authorities
to discuss cross-border audit oversight‎ in a push towards a
bilateral agreement.

A US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC)
and Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB) delegation
will meet their Chinese counterparts next week in an attempt to
ease concerns over the audit of Chinese companies listing in the

The delegation aims to discuss with China’s
Ministry of Finance and the China Securities Regulatory Commission
how each country conducts inspections and an agreement that allows
for joint inspections of China-based auditing firms registered with
the PCAOB.

“This meeting is the commencement of our
accelerated efforts with the People’s Republic of China to forge a
co-operative resolution to cross-border auditing oversight. I
believe we share a common objective with Chinese regulators to
protect investors and safeguard audit quality through our mutual
cooperation,” PCAOB chairman James Doty said.

Since 2007, the PCAOB has been engaged in
discussions with Chinese counterparts regarding a bilateral
agreement that would enable the PCAOB to conduct inspections of
auditing firms in China.

PCAOB registrants include more than 900 non-US
auditing firms from 87 jurisdictions, including 110 firms in China
and Hong Kong.

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US legislation requires all audit firms to
undergo inspections by the PCAOB at least once every three years,
regardless of where the public company and the audit firm are
Until now, the PCAOB has been blocked from conducting inspections
of auditing firms in China due to sovereignty concerns raised by
Chinese regulators.