Federación Argentina de Consejos Profesionales de Ciencias Económicas
Member | Established: 1973 | Member since 1995
FACPCE is the national voluntary professional accountancy organization of a federated system, with representatives from the 23 provincial associations and one autonomous city equivalent to a province—Buenos Aires—sitting on the council. The FACPCE represents not only accountants, but also economists, business administrators, and actuaries.
FACPCE, alongside its provincial associations, carries out the following regulatory activities for its members: (i) maintaining a registry of public accountants and auditors; (ii) setting accounting and auditing standards for non-regulated companies; (iii) establishing ethical standards; (iv) implementing an investigation and discipline system; and (v) establishing and operating a quality assurance review system. FACPCE-issued standards and regulations must be adopted by the provincial professional councils in order to become applicable in their jurisdictions.
FACPCE administers the Accounting and Auditing Standard Setting Board, the technical and standard-setting body, where professional volunteers work through technical commissions to develop and propose technical resolutions and pronouncements for FACPCE approval.
In addition to being an IFAC member, FACPCE is a member of the Inter-American Association of Accountants, the Integration Committee Europe—Latin America, and a member of the Group of Latin-American Accounting Standard Setters.
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 Argentina, provincial associations have the legal authority to issue rules regulating the professional practice of its own members, which includes establishing and operating a quality assurance (QA) review system for all audits of financial statements and quality control standards; however, the associations seem to have yet to establish such systems. In practice, provincial associations defer to the standards issued by the FACPCE—a federation composed of 24 provincial associations. In turn, FACPCE-issued standards must be adopted by the provincial professional councils in order to be applied in their jurisdictions. In addition, audits of companies regulated by the Central Bank (BCRA) and the National Securities Commission (CNV) are subject to QA review systems established by each regulator.
While FACPCE has adopted the ISQC 1 by the Technical Resolution No. 34 of 2012, it has not established a QA review system. Since 2008, through its Accounting and Auditing Standard Setting Board (CENCyA)—a technical and standard-setting body—the FACPCE has engaged in the following activities: discussing the feasibility of establishing a QA review system, developing an impact analysis of the potential adoption and implementation of such a system and subsequent report available for comments by its provincial associations and national stakeholders, benchmarking national and international experiences of QA reviews systems, creating debate forums to discuss the proposal and providing training activities on ISQC 1 and the QA review system proposal.
While, as of 2018, no QA review system has been established by the provincial associations either, FACPCE indicates it has established a QA Special Commission, within CENCyA, to formally consider the adoption and implementation a QA system, and FACPCE has plans to support its implementation by its members. For example, after FACPCE’s impact analysis, one of FACPCE’s largest member, the Ciudad Autónoma de Buenos Aires Professional Association, launched its own analysis on whether and how to implement a QA review system; however the results of the analysis are unknown. Similarly, it is also unclear what the outcome was of the FACPCE’s own analysis and if the FACPCE has created a timeline and strategy to progress with supporting the development and implementation of QA review systems amongst its members.
FACPCE is encouraged to establish plans to advocate for and work in collaboration of the BCRA and CNV to conduct a comparison of both QA review systems against the requirements of SMO 1, consider areas of less than full compliance, and formulate actions steps to eliminate gaps. In addition, FACPCE is encouraged to clarify if the Superintendence of Insurance has established a QA system for auditors providing services to companies under its supervision.
FACPCE is also encouraged to provide an update on its own initiative to establish and implement a mandatory QA review system for its members that audit other companies in order to cover all mandatory audits in the country.
- SMO 2: International Education Standards
In Argentina, the Ministry of Education, Science, and Technology (MoE), universities, each provincial association, and the financial sector regulators—the Central Bank (BCRA), the National Securities Commission (CNV) and the Superintendence of Insurance—have a role in implementing initial professional development (IPD) requirements for professional accountants, which are established in Law No. 20.488 of 1973. A university accounting degree is the only requirement in order to register as a public accountant. In order to offer accountancy services, including auditing, professionals with accounting degrees need to register and obtain licenses from the professional association of their jurisdiction. In addition, auditors providing services to financial sector regulators are subject to additional practical experience requirements as established by the regulators.
Given the FACPCE’s lack of authority to adopt IES requirements, its activities primarily include actions to promote the incorporation and implementation of IES requirements to the accountancy regulators. FACPCE have been advocating for the incorporation of IES requirements since 2009 and consistently incorporated the IES as part of technical agendas of national and international conferences. FACPCE has collaborated with the Board of Deans of Schools of Economic Sciences (CODECE) to incorporate supervised professional practices (internships) for accounting students as part of the accountancy curricula in efforts to align with IES 5.
To further consider how IES requirements might be incorporated into national accountancy education, FACPCE developed a comparison in 2014 of the IES 5, 6, and 7 against the local requirements; benchmarked Argentine educational requirements against other jurisdictions; created a document highlighting the main differences and potential solutions; and promoted and disseminated the IES among universities and the MoE. In addition, FACPCE states plans to review and perform a comparison against the 2015 revised IES once the translation is available in Spanish.
Lastly, FACPCE provides voluntary continuing professional development opportunities for its members through its Professional Development Federal System (SFAP) and disseminates information to members about recent developments and revisions issued by the IAESB.
FACPCE is encouraged to provide a status update on the incorporation of the missing revised IES requirements for professional accountants into the national educational requirements. To achieve this, FACPCE is encouraged to update its gap analysis against the 2015 revised IES and develop a roadmap for bringing educational requirements in line with revised IES. For example, FACPCE may consider developing a voluntary certification for professional accountants that aligns with the revised IES. The certification could eventually serve as a prerequisite to providing services to public interest entities in the jurisdiction.
If deemed feasible, it may be beneficial for FACPCE to participate in the international standard-setting process by providing comments on exposure drafts and other IAESB pronouncements to share its experiences and perspective.
- SMO 3: International Standards on Auditing
The provincial associations and the financial sector regulators— the Central Bank (BCRA), the National Securities Commission (CNV) and the Superintendence of Insurance (SSN)—are responsible for setting auditing standards in Argentina. The provincial associations defer to the auditing standards issued by FACPCE for other companies. FACPCE administers the Accounting and Auditing Standard Setting Board (CENCyA), a technical and standard-setting body, which drafts standards for FACPCE approval. In 2012, FACPCE has issued TR No. 32 adopting ISA by reference. In turn, FACPCE-issued standards must be adopted by the provincial associations’ councils in order to become applicable in their jurisdictions.
As part of the adoption collaboration efforts, FACPCE has created commissions within each of the financial sector regulators to help support the implementation of ISA. As the SSN has issued its own auditing standards, which are not the ISA, the FACPCE has created a committee to analyze the possibility of adopting ISA for audits of insurance companies.
To support the ongoing adoption of the standards, CENCyA and FACPCE: (i) monitor new and amended standards issued by the IAASB, and (ii) complete timely translations of the ISA. To achieve this, FACPCE has taken on a leadership role in the Ibero-American Cooperation Framework ( HYPERLINK "http://www.ifac.org/news-events/2012-10/ifac-signing-ceremony-marks-establishment-ibero-american-cooperation-framework-s" IberAM)—a regional project, which aims to produce a single, unified, high-quality Spanish translation.
To facilitate members’ implementation of the standards, FACPCE offers continuing professional development programming; incorporates training sessions on the standards within its National Congress; and disseminates information on updates and revisions to ISA.
FACPCE is encouraged to provide an update and detailed information on its efforts and actions to promote the adoption of ISA for insurance companies as this would ensure that all mandatory audits in the jurisdiction are conducted in accordance with ISA. In addition, FACPCE is encouraged to clarify if has provided implementation guidelines and materials to support implementation of the standards.
If deemed feasible, it may be beneficial for FACPCE to participate in the international standard-setting process by providing comments on exposure drafts and other IAASB pronouncements to share its experiences and perspective.
- SMO 4: Code of Ethics for Professional Accountants
FACPCE—the national voluntary PAO of a federated system—and the provincial associations, under the Law No. 20.488 of 1973, use a national Code of Ethics developed prior to 2004 and not based on the IESBA Code of Ethics. However, as reported by FACPCE, not all of the provincial associations use the unified, national Code. In addition, FACPCE adopted the independence aspects of the IESBA Code of Ethics through Technical Resolution (TR) No 34 of 2012. The TR is mandatory only for auditors providing services to companies that report prepared audited financial statements with ISA , officially endorsed by the National Securities Commission (CNV), through its General Resolution No. 663 of 2016.
FACPCE reports that it has promoted the importance of adoption and implementation of the IESBA Code of Ethics to its members over several years; however, no significant progress has been achieved nor have any plans to adopt the current IEBSA Code or update the national code with recent requirements of the IESBA Code of Ethics been reported.
FACPCE indicates it has analyzed and compared the ethical requirements adopted by each of the 24 provincial associations, the unified national Code, and the IESBA Code of ethics to prepare a project aimed at reducing and/or eliminating gaps. However, since 2015 no next steps or conclusions of the comparison have been reported.
FACPCE is strongly encouraged to provide more details and information about its plan to (i) eliminate differences between local ethical requirements in each providence and the unified, national Code; and (ii) work on eliminating differences between the unified, national Code and the IESBA Code of Ethics and/or consider the full adoption of the IESBA Code of Ethics for all professional accountants. For example, FACPCE could share the main differences identified from its comparison exercise, and create plans to review the 2016 IESBA Code, which includes the NOCLAR standard—a significant, international ethics standard for auditors and other professional accountants—as part of working to address differences between the current ethical requirements. Subsequently, FACPCE is encouraged activities to provide training and guidance on the ethics requirements in order to support proper implementation and application.
- SMO 5: International Public Sector Accounting Standards
FACPCE is not responsible for setting public sector accounting standards, which are adopted by the National Accounting Office (CGN). State-owned enterprises are required to apply Argentine GAAP (accrual -basis) in the preparation of their financial statements. The CGN has reportedly started a process to develop public sector accounting standards that are harmonized with accrual-basis IPSAS.
FACPCE reports it is proactive in this area despite its lack of legal authority and its Accounting and Auditing Standard Setting Board (CENCyA) prepares technical recommendations for the government, which as of the date of this report, includes three technical recommendations in line with IPSAS requirements: Public Administration Accounting Conceptual Framework; Presentation of Budget Execution Accounting Statement; and Financial Statement Presentation. In addition, CENCyA is currently undertaking a project to issue a new technical recommendation related to Asset Recognition and Measurement.
To further promote the adoption of IPSAS, FACPCE has engaged with regular meetings with the CGN; submitted comments to IPSASB exposure drafts; disseminated information on the updates to the standards; signed cooperation agreements aimed at research management and control of public funds; and offered training courses and included the IPSAS as topics within its National Congress.
FACPCE is encouraged to provide more information on the CGN’s process to develop public sector accounting standards harmonized with accrual-basis IPSAS and provide a timeline for this. As the project progresses, the FACPCE is encouraged to further consider how it may be able to provide technical, advocacy, and other forms of support to the CGN to enhance public financial management in the jurisdiction.
- SMO 6: Investigation and Discipline
In Argentina, the provincial associations are responsible for establishing investigative and disciplinary (I&D) systems for their members, and as reported by FACPCE, the provincial associations have implemented I&D systems; however, it is not clear to what extent the provincial I&D systems comply with the best practices of SMO 6.
FACPCE is the federal umbrella organization for the associations and therefore, it reports that it has been collaborating with the provincial associations to promote the establishment of I&D systems that are in line with the requirements of SMO 6. FACPCE indicates that since 2010 it has worked to compare the professional associations’ I&D systems against the SMO 6 requirements in order to suggest changes and amendments to enhance the I&D systems. However, no information on specific follow-up actions or developments has been provided.
FACPCE is strongly encourage to consider its role in regards to SMO 6 and provide more details and information about its plans either to establish a national I&D system (which would serve as the unified system that can investigate and discipline all professional accountants); to serve as an appeal mechanism; or to develop I&D processes in line with the SMO 6 requirements and recommend and support the implementation of these processes into the provincial associations’ I&D systems. Once its role is established, FACPCE is encouraged to create a strategic plan with the actions it will undertake to fulfill its mandate.
- SMO 7: International Financial Reporting Standards
It is the responsibility of FACPCE and the financial sector regulators—the Central Bank (BCRA), the National Securities Commission (CNV), and the Superintendence of Insurance (SSN)—to set corporate accounting standards for financial statements of the respective companies under each agency’s supervision. FACPCE administers the Accounting and Auditing Standard Setting Board (CENCyA), the technical and standard-setting body, which drafts standards for FACPCE approval. In turn, FACPCE-issued standards must be adopted by its provincial associations’ councils in order to become applicable in their jurisdictions. FACPCE issued Technical Resolution (TR) No 26 in 2009 which adopts IFRS and IFRS for Small- and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) by reference. These standards or Argentinean standards developed by the CENCyA may be used by other companies. Meanwhile listed companies and financial institutions are required to use IFRS as stipulated by the BCRA and CNV respectively while insurance companies apply accounting regulations issued by the SSN.
As part of supporting the adoption of IFRS by the regulators, FACPCE signed a cooperation agreement with the BCRA, which consequently resulted in the adoption of IFRS beginning in 2018 for financial institutions. Recently, FACPCE was able to replicate this agreement with the SSN in order to facilitate the adoption of IFRS for financial statements of insurance companies by 2022.
The FACPCE reports it is active in both regional and international standard-setting processes. The CENCyA monitors changes to the standards and pronouncements issued by the IASB and prepares TRs to adopt new requirements. Additionally, FACPCE is a member of the Latin American Accounting Standard Setters Group and provides comments to IASB exposure drafts through this regional grouping. Furthermore, FACPCE participates in IASB’s worldwide standard setters, Emerging Economies Group, and SME IFRS Implementation Group (SMEIG).
Amongst its members, FACPCE supports the implementation of the standards by disseminating information on the standards through various mechanisms, printing handbooks of the standards, providing training, encouraging universities to incorporate the standards in their curricula, and preparing implementation guidelines.
FACPCE is encouraged to continue promoting the adoption of IFRS for insurance companies. As the SSN project progresses, FACPCE is encouraged to further consider how it may be able to provide technical, advocacy, and other forms of support to the SSN.
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