Trinidad And Tobago

Member Organizations

Member Organization Associate Other PAOs

  Institute of Chartered Accountants of Trinidad and Tobago

Legal and Regulatory Environment

  • Overview of Statuatory Framework for Accounting and Auditing

    The Institute of Chartered Accountants of Trinidad and Tobago (ICATT) Act of 1970; the Companies Act of 1995, and the Companies Regulations of 1997; the Insurance Act of 1980 (as amended 2009); the Financial Institutions Act of 2008; and the Securities Industry Act of 1995, establish basic financial reporting and auditing requirements in Trinidad & Tobago. The Acts generally do not contain detailed accounting, auditing, and financial reporting requirements but rather refer to standards adopted by ICATT.

    The Companies Regulations of 1997 require that the financial statements of corporate entities comply with accounting standards adopted by ICATT, which are IFRS as issued by IASB. ICATT also adopted IFRS for Small- and Medium-sized Entities (SMEs) by reference, without modification.

    There is no definition of a public interest entity (PIE) or SME by law to support the IFRS and IFRS for SMEs reporting frameworks. However, the Council of ICATT approved a definition of PIEs for periods beginning on or after December 15, 2017. According to ICATT’s definition, a PIE is defined as an entity incorporated or registered in Trinidad and Tobago with any of the following characteristics: (i) its securities are listed on the Trinidad and Tobago Stock Exchange; (ii) its debt or equity instruments are traded in a public market and/or have instruments registered with the Trinidad and Tobago Securities of Exchange Commission; (iii) it is regulated by the Central Bank of Trinidad and Tobago and/or designated as a Systemically Important Financial Institution (SIFI); (iv) is a credit union; and (v) it is ultimately controlled by the State.

    ICATT’s framework is supported by several individual laws and acts such as the Securities Industries Act of 1995, Insurance Act of 1980 (as amended 2009), and the Financial Institutions Act of 2008, which require listed companies, insurance companies, banks, and nonbanking financial institutions respectively to produce, publish, and file financial statements in accordance with the accounting standards adopted by ICATT—IFRS as issued by the IASB.

    With regards to auditing requirements, ICATT, as empowered by the ICATT Act of 1970 sets standards for all audits in the jurisdiction. It has adopted ISA as issued by the IAASB without modification which include the new auditor’s report.

    Banks, insurance companies, and listed companies are also required to using auditing standards adopted by ICATT as per their respective legislation—Financial Institutions Act of 2008; Insurance Act of 1980 (as amended 2009); and Securities Industries Act of 1995.

  • Regulation of Accountancy Profession

    The Institute of Chartered Accountants of Trinidad and Tobago (ICATT) Act of 1970 empowers ICATT to statutorily regulate the accountancy profession within Trinidad and Tobago. ICATT is the accounting and auditing standard-setter in the jurisdiction. While membership in ICATT for auditors is mandatory, it is voluntary for accountants.

    Auditors are subject to ICATT’s quality assurance (QA) review and investigation and disciplinary (I&D) system; its continuing professional development requirements; and its ethical requirements.

    Several legislative acts require that audits of certain companies be conducted by an ICATT Member in Practice (MP). Candidates for ICATT membership are required to pay a fee; complete three years of practical experience; pass a final examination; and provide two references with at least one from a member of ICATT in good standing. ICATT does not conduct its own examinations, but rather operates a Joint Examination Scheme with the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA).

    All members of ICATT use the Chartered Accountant (CA) designation, and must remain members to retain the designation. Once a member of ICATT, individuals may pursue two certificates in order to offer accountancy services in the jurisdiction. A Practicing Certificate, which ICATT grants, allows members to undertake general practice work or practice in specialized areas, for example, consultancy or tax preparation, but not audits. These members are considered Members Not in Practice (MNPs). In order to conduct audits, members of ICATT must hold both a Practicing Certificate and an Auditing Certificate and are categorized as MPs.

    To qualify for a Practicing Certificate, an individual must (i) be a member of ICATT or another member organization of IFAC approved by Council for at least two years continuously; (ii) complete at least 2,000 hours of relevant practical experience in the area(s) in which the member intends to practice over a minimum period of two years and up to a maximum of four years under a Supervising Principal, after being admitted to ICATT; and (iii) complete a course on ethics and professional practice subjects as approved by ICATT. As of the date of the assessment, there is no law that requires accountants to obtain Practicing Certificates from ICATT. However, ICATT has reportedly approached the government to pass a law that will require accountants working in public practice to obtain Practicing Certificates.

    After obtaining the Practicing Certificate, an Auditing Certificate permits members to conduct audits and are considered to be in public practice. To qualify for an Auditing Certificate, a member must meet the same requirements as described above but must have completed at least 3,000 hours of audit related work.

    Finally, ICATT has reciprocal membership agreements in place with CPA Canada; American Institute of Certified Public Accountant (AICPA); Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA); Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW); CPA Ireland; Institute of Chartered Accountants Ireland (CA Ireland); Association of International Accountants (AIA); Institute of Chartered Accountants of Scotland (ICAS); and Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA). Members of ICATT that are also members of the organizations that have reciprocal agreements with ICATT are also subject to regulation and oversight of their respective professional bodies, which generally meet international best practices.

  • Audit Oversight Arrangements

    There are no independent audit public oversight arrangements in Trinidad and Tobago. The Institute of Chartered Accountants of Trinidad and Tobago (ICATT) Act of 1970 empowers ICATT to statutorily regulate audit practices in the jurisdiction and set standards for the accountancy profession. Several legislative acts require that audits of certain companies be conducted by an ICATT Member in Practice.

    All auditors are required to be members of ICATT to practice and must apply auditing standards set by ICATT. Auditors are subject to ICATT’s quality assurance (QA) review and investigation and disciplinary (I&D) system; its continuing professional development requirements; and its ethical requirements.

    ICATT has reciprocal membership agreements in place with CPA Canada; American Institute of Certified Public Accountant (AICPA); Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA); Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW); CPA Ireland; Institute of Chartered Accountants Ireland (CA Ireland); Association of International Accountants (AIA); Institute of Chartered Accountants of Scotland (ICAS); and Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA). Members of ICATT that are also members of the organizations that have reciprocal agreements with ICATT are also subject to regulation and oversight of their respective professional bodies.

  • Professional Accountancy Organizations

    The Institute of Chartered Accountants of Trinidad and Tobago (ICATT) was established by the ICATT Act of 1970. Membership in ICATT is mandatory for auditors, and voluntary for accountants.

    ICATT is the accounting and auditing standard setter in the jurisdiction that promotes and contributes to the advancement of the profession, and provides professional training.

    In addition to being a member of IFAC, ICATT is a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of the Caribbean (ICAC).

  • Projects or Other Information

    The Institute of Chartered Accountants of Trinidad and Tobago (ICATT) reports to be working towards securing funding (roughly USD 25,000) to develop a program that supports implementation of its newly revised Rules and Regulations for Small and Medium Practices.

Adoption of International Standards

  • Quality Assurance

    The Institute of Chartered Accountants of Trinidad and Tobago (ICATT) Act of 1970 empowers ICATT to statutorily regulate auditors. ICATT has adopted ISQC 1 as the applicable quality control standards.

    ICATT adopted a QA review system in 2007 for the inspection of members’ audits and the audit monitoring visits began in 2009 under a contract with the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA). QA reviews continue to be outsourced to ACCA, which submits reports to an independent Regulatory Committee of ICATT for review and action. Effective April 2016, ICATT requires members’ audits of any public interest entities to be reviewed every three years. The ICATT reports that the scope and design of its QA review system, which was developed with the assistance of ACCA, fulfill SMO 1 requirements.

    All auditors are required to join ICATT, some of which belong to foreign professional accountancy organizations and may be subject to the oversight and regulation of their respective professional bodies, which would include QA reviews. ICATT has reciprocal agreements with several member organizations that have QA reviews that are in line with SMO 1 requirements.

    Current Status: Adopted

  • International Education Standards

    In accordance with the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Trinidad and Tobago (ICATT) Act of 1970, ICATT is responsible for setting initial professional development (IPD) and continuing professional development (CPD) requirements for its members, but these requirements do not necessarily apply to all professional accountants in the jurisdiction since membership is only mandatory for auditors but not accountants.

    ICATT’s current IPD requirements include passing examinations (under a joint ICATT and Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) scheme) and acquiring specified practical experience. ICATT members must also adhere to continuing professional development (CPD) of 40 hours per year with at least 21 CPD hours being verifiable, which aligns with the 2010 IES requirements. Members that possess Auditing and Practicing Certificates are required to complete an additional 10 hours of CPD annually in the specialized areas of practice. At least half of CPD hours completed annually must be verifiable for members possessing Auditing and Practicing Certificates.

    In addition, members of the following professional accountancy organizations may become members of ICATT: CPA Canada; American Institute of Certified Public Accountant; Chartered Institute of Management Accountants; Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales; CPA Ireland; Institute of Chartered Accountants Ireland; Association of International Accountants; Institute of Chartered Accountants of Scotland; and Association of Chartered Certified Accountants.

    All of the above bodies require their aspiring members to complete a professional accountancy education program, a practical experience requirement, and to pass final examinations that align with the revised 2015 IES.

    There is no examination on local tax and business laws in Trinidad & Tobago, however since ICATT has legislative authority under the ICATT Act of 1970 to set its own examinations, it is exploring the possibility of administering its own local tax and company law examinations or working with the Institute of Chartered Accountants of the Caribbean to set a regional taxation and company law examination.

    While national educational requirements appear to incorporate most of the IES requirements, several factors contribute to the status of Partially Adopted: (i) these requirements may only cover segment of professional accountants offering services in the jurisdiction since membership for accountants is voluntary; (ii) there is no examination on local tax and business legislation; and (iii) further clarification is needed to determine if national educational requirements align with the revised 2015 IES which emphasize learning outcome approaches.

    Current Status: Partially Adopted

  • International Standards on Auditing

    The Institute of Chartered Accountants of Trinidad and Tobago (ICATT), as empowered by the ICATT Act of 1970 sets standards for all audits in the jurisdiction. It has adopted ISA as issued by the IAASB without modification which include the new auditor’s report.

    Current Status: Adopted

  • Code of Ethics for Professional Accountants

    The Institute of Chartered Accountants of Trinidad and Tobago (ICATT), empowered by the ICATT Act of 1970, is responsible for setting ethical requirements for its members. The ICATT has adopted by reference the IESBA Code of Ethics for Professional Accountants and its members adhere to the 2016 IESBA Code of Ethics.

    Individuals belonging to foreign professional accountancy organizations may also publicly practice in the jurisdiction. These individuals may be subject to the oversight and regulation of their respective professional bodies, which would include ethical requirements. ICATT has reciprocal agreements with several member organizations that have ethical requirements that meet the latest version of the IESBA Code of Ethics.

    Current Status: Adopted

  • International Public Sector Accounting Standards

    The government of Trinidad and Tobago is responsible for setting public sector accounting standards. The public sector accounting standards are cash-based. The government has not adopted IPSAS, and there is no plan to incorporate them into the national requirements.

    Current Status: Not Adopted

  • Investigation and Discipline

    In accordance with the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Trinidad and Tobago (ICATT) Act of 1970, ICATT is responsible for the investigative and disciplinary procedures (I&D) over its members.

    As of the date of the assessment, ICATT reports that its I&D system is in line with the requirements of SMO 6 since new rules and regulations were adopted in February 2017.

    Individuals belonging to foreign professional accountancy organizations’ may also publicly practice in the jurisdiction. These individuals may be subject to the oversight and regulation of their respective professional bodies, which would include I&D procedures. ICATT has reciprocal agreements with several member organizations that have I&D systems that meet SMO 6 requirements.

    Current Status: Adopted

  • International Financial Reporting Standards

    The Institute of Chartered Accountants of Trinidad and Tobago (ICATT) Act of 1970; the Companies Act of 1995, and the Companies Regulations of 1997; the Insurance Act of 1980 (as amended 2009); the Financial Institutions Act of 2008; and the Securities Industry Act of 1995, establish basic financial reporting requirements in Trinidad & Tobago. The Acts generally do not contain detailed accounting and financial reporting requirements but rather refer to standards adopted by ICATT. Therefore, ICATT is the accounting standard-setter for the jurisdiction.

    The Companies Regulations of 1997 require that the financial statements of corporate entities comply with accounting standards adopted by ICATT, which are IFRS as issued by IASB. ICATT also adopted IFRS for Small- and Medium-sized Entities (SMEs) by reference, without modification.

    There is no definition of a public interest entity or SME by law to support the IFRS and IFRS for SMEs reporting frameworks. However, the Council of ICATT approved a definition of PIEs for periods beginning on or after December 15, 2017. According to ICATT’s definition, a PIE is defined as an entity incorporated or registered in Trinidad and Tobago with any of the following characteristics: (i) its securities are listed on the Trinidad and Tobago Stock Exchange; (ii) its debt or equity instruments are traded in a public market and/or have instruments registered with the Trinidad and Tobago Securities of Exchange Commission; (iii) it is regulated by the Central Bank of Trinidad and Tobago and/or designated as a Systemically Important Financial Institution (SIFI); (iv) is a credit union; and (v) it is ultimately controlled by the State.

    ICATT’s framework is supported by several individual laws and acts such as the Securities Industries Act of 1995, Insurance Act of 1980 (as amended 2009), and the Financial Institutions Act of 2008, which require listed companies, insurance companies, banks, and nonbanking financial institutions respectively to produce, publish, and file financial statements in accordance with the accounting standards adopted by ICATT—IFRS as issued by IASB.

    Current Status: Adopted

Disclaimer

IFAC bears no responsibility for the information provided in the SMO Action Plans prepared by IFAC member organizations. Please see our full Disclaimer for additional information.

Methodology

Methodology
Last updated: 06/2019
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