Businesses and auditors on Monday said that they feared duplication of regulatory functions and unnecessary delay in business activities due to the function of Financial Reporting Council unless due procedure is maintained.
They expressed their concern at a seminar on ‘Financial Reporting Act 2015 and its Economic Implications’ organised by Dhaka Chamber of Commerce and Industry at its office in the city.
FRC chairman CQK Mustaq Ahmed attended the discussion at chief guest where Bangladesh Bank director Aftab Ul Islam, DCCI president Abul Kasem Khan, Institute of Chartered Accountants Bangladesh president Adeeb Hossain Khan, Institute of Cost and Management Accountants of Bangladesh president Jamal Ahmed Choudhury, among others, were present.
Speaking on the occasion, Adeeb Hossain Khan said that the FRC should find out the gap or shortcomings in the existing regulatory activities, whether it is Bangladesh Securities and Exchange Commission, Bangladesh Bank, Insurance Development Regulatory Authority or any other regulatory body.
Filling the gap or shortcomings of the existing regulators would be the value addition of the FRC instead of any sort of duplication or overlapping of regulatory activities, he said.
It should be ensured that the business communities would not face any new layer on top of the existing layer, he said.
Speaking about the five-year imprisonment and Tk five lakh penalty provisions in the FRA, he said that the auditing has already become a low value job and the profession would not be able to get right talent for the job if any sort of harsh measures is taken.
DCCI former senior-vice president Ms Shekil Chowdhury said, ‘The FRC will have to ensure that one would not face any hassle if all rules and regulations are complied by him/her.’
He also urged the FRC to ensure that the commission would not turn into an extra toll-collection system.
DCCI director K Atique-e-Rabbani said that giving punishment should not be the only intention of FRC.
Mentioning auditing as a key pillar of public confidence in corporate governance and the part of an integrated financial reporting eco-system, Abul Kashem Khan said that many countries witness financial collapse due to non-compliance and lack of proper watchdog.
He said adequate resource allocation, availability of experts and other tools are needed to maintain effective mechanism which should be made available so that the council brings good and smooth control of affairs in the financial framework and in no way should become a bottleneck and cause unnecessary delay processes.
The DCCI president also mentioned that a large number of obligatory prerequisites of the FRA may pose a challenge for most of the business organisations that need to comply.
Kashem Khan also suggested for awareness building so that stringent process should not in any manner slow down or hinder business opportunities.
Md Shahdat Hossain, fellow member of ICAB, in his keynote paper mentioned different positive aspects of the FRA adding that the companies will have to be made liable for complying with standards, codes guidelines as issued by the council.
Otherwise, negative comment known as qualified opinion of the auditors will have negative impact on foreign investors, foreign bankers and financial institutions, Shahdat said.
He also stressed on mandatory appointment of expert accountants and timely preparation of financial statements to get the benefit of FRA.
CQK Mustaq Ahmed said that the main role of Financial Reporting Council (FRC) will be to coordinate rather than to regulate and there should be no duplication of regulatory function.
He assured the businessmen not to be worried about this new act as regulation is only for bringing in transparency.
He said there are many regulations in the country, but proper implementation of these regulations are very important.
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