Skip to main content


Volume 170: debated on Friday 30 March 1990

The text on this page has been created from Hansard archive content, it may contain typographical errors.

To ask the Secretary State for Trade and Industry on how many occasions the auditors of any company have been replaced as a consequence of issuing a qualified opinion; and if he will publish the latest available statistics.

To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if he will withdraw his representatives from any auditing policy-making organisation which allows any individual from the auditing firms criticised by his Department to influence the formulation of policy.

My Department will continue to seek to make a constructive contribution to the development of guidance for the accountancy profession. An arbitrary policy of withdrawal in the circumstances suggested by the hon. Member's question would therefore be self-defeating.

To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry whether he will introduce legislation giving him powers specifically to investigate the affairs of auditing firms which according to his inspectors have performed poor audits.

[holding answer 29 March 1990]: No, but under the Companies Act 1989, which will provide a new supervisory system for company auditors, it must appear to the Secretary of State that recognised supervisory bodies have effective arrangements for the investigation of complaints against company auditors.