Colegio de Peritos Mercantiles y Contadores Públicos
Member | Established: 1966 | Member since 1998
The CPMCPH was established by Decree No. 74 of 1966, as amended by Decree No. 71 of 2004. The CPMCPH is the professional body for accounting technicians and public accountants. It is responsible for promoting and advocating for the interests of the profession to the government, regulators, and universities; establishing ethical requirements; setting investigative and disciplinary (I&D) procedures; providing training programs for its members; and supporting the adoption of international standards and the regulation of the profession through its participation in the Accounting and Auditing Standards Technical Board (JUNTEC).
In addition to being a member of IFAC, the CPMCPH is a member of the Inter-American Accounting Association.
Statements of Membership Obligation (SMO)
The Statements of Membership Obligations form the basis of the IFAC Member Compliance Program. They serve as a framework for credible and high-quality professional accountancy organizations focused on serving the public interest by adopting, or otherwise incorporating, and supporting implementation of international standards and maintaining adequate enforcement mechanisms to ensure the professional behavior of their individual members.
SMO 1: Quality Assurance
In Honduras, there is no legal requirement for a mandatory quality assurance (QA) review system; however, the CPMCPH, as a professional accountancy organization, has collaborated with key stakeholders in the profession such as the Accounting and Auditing Standards Technical Board (JUNTEC), the Colegio Hondureño de Profesionales Universitarios en Contaduría Pública (COHPUCP), and the Association of Audit Firms of Honduras (AFAH)—an organization composed solely of audit firms—to advance the adoption of a QA review system. In collaboration with COHPUCP, the organization has advocated that the JUNTEC adopt a concrete plan to create a mandatory QA review system and adopt ISQC 1. The association has an ongoing collaboration with JUNTEC as CPMCPH is represented on the JUNTEC board and regularly provides technical input.
All relevant stakeholders in Honduras, including the National Banking and Insurance Commission (CNBS), which will occasionally carry out inspections if a risk is identified, are planning to operationalize a QA review system in 2022–2023, under the auspices of the COHPUCP and CPMCPH, and it is expected that the system will meet the SMO 1 requirements. The QA system will be developed with the support of the Association of Authorized Public Accountants of Puerto Rico (CCPAPR).
The CPMCPH has previously provided training and disseminated information on the quality control standards and is partnering with COHPUCP to provide further training activities to raise awareness and support implementation.
The CPMCPH has undertaken several actions to drive the adoption and implementation of a QA system for all auditors that aligns with the SMO 1 requirements in the jurisdiction, which is expected to be in place in 2022-2023. Importantly, the new suite of IAASB Quality Management standards that will become effective in December 2022 will require significant change management for regulators and firms. As it is preparing to develop a QA review process, the CPMCPH is encouraged to refer to the new changes from quality control standards to quality management standards and prepare members and other relevant stakeholders for the change. For example, the JUNTEC should be encouraged to adopt ISQM 1 and the CPMCPH should update its training programming to ensure that its members are sufficiently prepared.
SMO 2: International Education Standards
In Honduras, public accountants and accounting technicians (the two segments of the accountancy profession) are regulated at the state level by Decree No. 73 of 1962, which sets initial professional development (IPD) requirements and requires mandatory membership in a professional organization. Universities and the Ministry of Education have a role in IPD for professional accountants. Public accountants are required to have a university accounting degree, while accounting technicians are required to hold a secondary education degree. Presently, there are no examination or practical experience requirements specified in legislation in order to offer services as outlined by the IES.
In 2012, the National Congress of Honduras issued Legislative Decree No. 262/2011 which introduced a reform in the national education system. Based on this law, the Ministry of Education issued the Agreement No. 15155-SE-2012 that eliminated, as of 2012, the Commercial Education program. Completion of this program granted individuals the title of accounting technician (perito mercantil). The program was replaced by a new degree of Professional Baccalaureate in Accounting and Finance, which, the CPMCPH reported, is significantly less technically stringent and demanding and not aligned with the IES. Therefore, as of 2022, the CPMCPH does not recognize the new program as a pathway to membership given that individuals who only complete this program may not have the necessary competencies to offer high-quality services.
CPMCPH’s activities in this area primarily include promoting the adoption and implementation of IES requirements to the Ministry of Education and universities which are responsible for the curriculum leading to the two accountancy-related qualifications. In 2021, the Ministry of Education requested the CPMCPH to provide input into the curricula that was ultimately not taken into consideration. The main recommendation was about aligning the curricula to the IES requirements.
Based on the abovementioned complex environment, the CPMCPH noted that it has not adopted other IES requirements such as practical experience or CPD for its members. Still, it offers CPD trainings, although it is not mandatory for members to complete them.
The CPMCPH envisions presenting amendments to its founding legislation Decree No. 74 of 1966, as amended by Decree No. 71 of 2004, to try and address these significant concerns.
Educational requirements and professional competencies are foundational to maintaining public trust and confidence in the profession. The CPMCPH continues to be stalled in implementing concrete actions to progress the IES adoption. The CPMCPH is encouraged to continue collaborating with regulators and universities to promote and support the adoption and implementation of all IES requirements. The CPMCPH can refer to examples in the region for best practices and learnings on how to adopt the IES with limited legal authority, for example, a voluntary certification aligned with the IES and/or a university accreditation system.
The latest IES standards reflect the need for competency-based approaches as well as the increasing demand for accountants skilled in information and communications technologies and place further emphasis on professional skepticism skills and behaviors. These apply to both aspiring and professional accountants. The Accountancy Education E-Tool and the IES Checklist developed by IFAC & available in Spanish may be useful and the CPMCPH should review these available tools as part of its work plan to advocate for IES adoption.
SMO 3: International Standards on Auditing
The Accounting and Auditing Standards Technical Board (JUNTEC) and the National Banking and Insurance Commission (CNBS) are authorized to set auditing standards in Honduras. CNBS, through Circular No. 075 of 2011, requires auditors performing a mandatory audit of entities under its supervision to apply ISA as adopted by JUNTEC. The JUNTEC has adopted the ISA as issued by the IAASB and translated into Spanish, and subsequently published the standards in the official gazette for all mandatory audits. In line with JUNTEC Resolution No. 3 of 2017, the latest version of ISA that is in effect in the jurisdiction is the 2016-2017 ISA. JUNTEC has not adopted ISQC 1 standards.
While it has no authority for auditing standards' adoption, the CPMCPH is an active participant in the national standard-setting process through its representation on the board of the audit standard-setter, the JUNTEC.
Accordingly, the CPMCPH states that it regularly encourages the JUNTEC to establish these ongoing adoption processes by requesting the Board to update, adopt, and implement changes and/or modifications issued by the IAASB in a timely manner and highlight the need to monitor and enforce compliance with the standards. Additionally, the institute also reports that it coordinates with the JUNTEC to develop implementation guidelines for practitioners.
Furthermore, the CPMCPH has also sent official letters to the National Banking and Insurance Commission (CNBS) to emphasize the importance of registered audit firms complying with the applicable standards and encourage the entity to monitor compliance.
Finally, to assist its members with implementing the standards, the CPMCPH, in collaboration with JUNTEC, has developed training activities for its members on the ISA and disseminated new and amended standards through its communications channels.
The CPMCPH is encouraged to provide an update on its efforts to promote the ongoing adoption of the latest ISA in the jurisdiction, ensuring that the standards are up-to-date with the latest version of the standards. The 2020 IAASB Handbook is available, which includes ISA 540 revised (effective December 2019), ISA 315 (effective December 2021), and conforming amendments arising from the IESBA Code of Ethics. The CPMCPH may also consider disseminating available translations of ISA 315, ISQM 1, ISQM 2, ISA 220, and ISRS 4000 (revised) that will become effective throughout 2022 to prepare auditors to apply the standards upon effective date properly.
SMO 4: Code of Ethics for Professional Accountants
The CPMCPH is responsible for setting ethical requirements for its members and reports adopting a Code of Ethics in 2005. However, these ethical requirements are reportedly not aligned with the IESBA Code of Ethics, and the institute indicates its Code of Ethics is less stringent than the IESBA Code.
Since 2014, the CPMCPH has indicated plans to adopt the IESBA Code of Ethics. As of 2022, the institute plans to submit the adoption of the 2018 International Code of Ethics for the consideration and approval of its General Assembly in May 2022. Once the Code is adopted, the CPMCPH plans to disseminate ethics-related materials and coordinate training activities for its members on the Code.
It is essential to the public interest that professional accountants adhere to the latest ethical requirements. A lack of progress in implementing the actions to adopt the IESBA Code of Ethics has persisted over several years. As the current plans state an objective to adopt the 2018 IESBA Code of Ethics, the CPMCPH should update IFAC in June 2022 regarding the decision of the General Assembly.
Additionally, the CPMCPH will have to ensure that, if the decision is approved, its Code remains standards are up-to-date with the latest version issued by the IESBA. The 2021 Handbook is currently effective, with changes in the terms and concepts used in the IAASB's International Standard on Assurance Engagements (ISAE) 3000 (Revised), and revisions to promote the role and mindset expected of all professional accountants. In addition, the CPMCPH should also take note of changes in the 2021 handbook, which will be effective in December 2022, including the objectivity of an engagement quality reviewer and other appropriate reviewers, revisions to the non-assurance services, and revisions to the fee-related provisions.
SMO 5: International Public Sector Accounting Standards
The General Accounting Office (CGRH), within the Financial Secretary of Honduras (SEFIN), sets public sector accounting standards in accordance with the Budget Organic Decree No. 83 of 2004. In 2012, SEFIN collaborated with JUNTEC—as part of the legal provision in the Accounting and Auditing Law No. 189 of 2004—to adopt IPSAS. In 2014, JUNTEC formally adopted IPSAS, as published in the Official Gazette through the Resolution No. 60 of 2014. In 2015, SEFIN reaffirmed the adoption of the IPSAS by JUNTEC under Resolution No. 223 of 2015. According to the CGRH, the 2018 IPSAS will be adopted as of January 1, 2018, with an effective date of January 1, 2019. However, due to the impacts of the COVID pandemic, the JUNTEC extended the effective date to January 1, 2024.
While the CPMCPH was not legally responsible for the standards’ adoption, it indicates that it supported the adoption process by participating in consultation activities with the CGRH and the JUNTEC. The CPMCPH indicates that it has sent letters to the CGRH and JUNTEC encouraging the agencies to provide assistance to public sector entities to apply the standards and to establish a monitoring plan to evaluate the implementation of the public sector accounting standards.
Furthermore, the CPMCPH indicates that it has also requested that the JUNTEC establish procedures to monitor, update, and adopt any changes and/or modifications issued by the IPSASB in a timely manner.
The CPMCPH is encouraged to provide specific examples of activities, such as trainings and workshops, to support its members with implementing IPSAS. The CPMCPH may also find IFAC’s Train the Trainers: Introduction to IPSAS and IFAC’s Pathways to Accrual resources helpful for any training and educational activities it offers. In addition, the CPMCPH is encouraged to disseminate information on IPSAS and the value the standards bring to public financial management amongst its members and key stakeholders through its publications.
The CPMCPH is encouraged to continue its advocacy and support toward the latest IPSAS adoption and implementation, noting that the 2021 IPSASB Handbook was effective as of January 2021.
SMO 6: Investigation and Discipline
The CPMCPH is responsible for establishing and operating an investigation and discipline (I&D) system for its members and has established and implemented an I&D system accordingly. Presently, the CPMCPH reports that its I&D system is complaints-based, and it primarily acts as a mediator between the parties involved in any complaint.
In 2017, the CPMCPH conducted an assessment of its I&D policies and processes against the requirements of SMO 6 and had identified the main gaps, such as members of the I&D committee do not include non-accountants and a lack of certain administrative processes for its I&D system, among others. The CPMCPH indicated plans to fully incorporate the SMO 6 requirements into its I&D system in 2018 and raise awareness of the changes.
As the CPMCPH plans to adopt the 2018 IESBA Code of Ethics in May 2022, it reports that it will coordinate its actions with its Court of Honor as the Court is simultaneously involved in adopting the IESBA Code of Ethics. Once the institute’s General Assembly has approved the proposed I&D system, expected in 2023, the CPMCPH intends to implement the awareness-raising campaign mentioned above.
I&D procedures that meet the SMO 6 benchmark are foundational to maintaining public trust and confidence in the profession. The CPMCPH system continues to have gaps since its last Action Plan update in 2018. The CPMCPH should prioritize making improvements to its system, as noted in the comments from IFAC. These plans with reasonable timeframes should be communicated and outlined in its Action Plan along with any challenges/limitations (e.g. legal authority) the CPMCPH might face in making progress. Identifying challenges will better enable the CPMCPH to connect with other PAOs in the region that have overcome similar obstacles to learn from them.
The CPMCPH is also encouraged to consider collaborating with the COPHPUCP to ensure that both I&D systems are aligned with best practices, or to promote a unified national system that can investigate and discipline all professional accountants while being in line with SMO 6.
SMO 7: International Financial Reporting Standards
Although it does not have authority to adopt corporate accounting standards, the CPMCPH actively engages with the Accounting and Auditing Standards Technical Board (JUNTEC) through representation on the board. The JUNTEC is responsible for setting accounting standards in accordance with the Accounting and Auditing Law No. 189 of 2004 and has adopted IFRS and IFRS for Small-and Medium-sized Entities (SMEs) through the Resolution No. 001 of 2010 and subsequently published the standards in the official gazette, for application by all entities other than banks and financial institutions. Banks, financial institutions, insurance companies, and companies on the stock exchange must follow standards issued by the National Banking and Insurance Commission (CNBS). CNBS has adopted IFRS but that are modified according to national standards.
The CPMCPH indicates that plans to support the JUNTEC strengthening its technical and operational capacity to monitor and enforce compliance with the standards. The CPMCPH also supports JUNTEC’s participation in the Latin American Accounting Standard Setters Group to participate in the international standard-setting process by providing comments to exposure drafts at a regional level.
To assist its members with implementing the standards, the CPMCPH reports that it has developed training sessions on IFRS and IFRS for SMEs. The CPMCPH has also undertaken efforts to disseminate new and amended standards.
Efforts to adopt the latest IFRS Standards are strongly encouraged as part of bringing transparency, accountability, and efficiency to national, regional, and global markets. The CPMCPH is therefore encouraged to continue efforts to advocate and advance the adoption of IFRS without modifications as the standards adopted by the CNBS for public interest entities. In addition, the CPMCPH is encouraged to note whether it has also developed any implementation tools to facilitate the application of the standards among members.
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