US regulator bans HK accounting firm – Paul Gillis

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Paul Gillis

The efforts by the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB)  to get access to Chinese data from US-listed Chinese firms went into a new phase as it banned a Hong Kong accounting firm, reports Beida accounting professor Paul Gillis on his weblog. It could be a new item on Trump’s China agenda, he suggests.

Paul Gillis:

The Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB) has published disciplinary actions against a small Hong Kong CPA firm, Anthony Kam & Associates and Anthony Kam himself (Kam). Kam and his firm have been fined, censured, and banned from doing audits of US listed companies for at least five years because of shoddy work on Sino Agro Food, Inc (SIAF), a Chinese reverse merger.

Kam was found to have signed off on the 2012 audit of SAIF without actually conducting an audit. Kam had taken over the audit from another firm and reissued the financial statements without doing any work other than obtaining a representation letter from the client and getting a copy of the prior auditors working papers. Serious deficiencies were found in the 2013 and 2014 audits.

The PCAOB lamented that it should have inspected KAM at least twice since 2009, but was unable to do so because China blocks access. Somehow the PCAOB was able to pursue this action; possibly it was done under the 2013 Enforcement Cooperation Agreement. If Trump wants to get tough on China, he might start by demanding the Chinese comply with US laws or else delist their companies from US markets.

More at the ChinaAccountingBlog.

Paul Gillis is a speaker at the China Speakers Bureau. Do you need him at your meeting or conference? Do get in touch or fill in our speakers’ request form.

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