Slovenska Komora Auditorov
Member | Established: 1992 | Member Since 2002
The SKAU is a legal entity established in 1992 that unites auditors and audit firms. It is subject to the regulations set out in the Act No. 423/2015 on Statutory Audit, which defines the organizational structure and duties of the organization. SKAU’s mandate is to: (i) issue the Auditor’s Code of Ethics; (ii) conduct quality assurance reviews of auditors providing services to non-public interest entities under the oversight of Úrad pre dohl’ad nad vykonom auditu (UDVA); (iii) conduct and enforce continuing professional development requirements; (iv) maintain a registry for members; and (v) operate an investigation & disciplinary system for members under the supervision of UDVA.
In addition to being a member of IFAC, SKAU is a member of Accountancy Europe.
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
The Act No. 423/2015 on Statutory Audit stipulates that statutory auditors and audit firms are subject to quality assurance (QA) reviews carried out by Úrad pre dohl’ad nad vykonom auditu (UDVA) for public interest entities (PIEs) and large companies and by the SKAU for non-PIEs under UDVA’s oversight. SKAU reports that the QA review arrangements in Slovakia are in line with the requirements of SMO 1 and the European Union’s 8th Company Law Directive on Statutory Audit.
SKAU’s QA review system has been operational since 2008, and reports to continuously monitor and review developments related to best practices in QA review processes.
The institute supports auditors in improving their internal control systems by offering guides and training on internal control, new internal control questionnaires, and the methodology that reviewers use in the conduct of QA reviews. It offers training based on recommendations by quality assurance reviewers, such as workshops to assist auditors in improving their audit documentation. To ensure that its reviewers are up to date on review processes, SKAU reports that it participated in several workshops hosted by the Institute of Chartered Accountants of England and Wales between 2015–2017. Its participation in such workshops allowed SKAU QA reviewers to share experiences and knowledge with other QA reviewers in Europe.
SKAU continues to organize annual workshops for quality reviewers, reviews different aspects of the QA review system and makes improvements where necessary. For example, it has reviewed the quality control questionnaires and updated its QA internal regulations and the methodology.
The SKAU prepares and distributes an annual report on its QA activities to UDVA and publishes the information on its website.
- SMO 2: International Education Standards
The initial and continuing professional development (IPD and CPD respectively) requirements are established for auditors in the Act No. 423/2015 on Statutory Audit and are implemented by universities, Úrad pre dohl’ad nad vykonom auditu (UDVA), and the professional accountancy organization for statutory auditors, SKAU. In order to practice as an auditor, candidates must possess a master’s level degree or higher with at least five years of practical experience in accounting and at least three years (2100 hours) practical experience in auditing. They must also pass UDVA audit examinations.
To remain a member of SKAU in good standing, auditors are required to complete CPD requirements stipulated in Article 31 of the Act No. 423/2015 on Statutory Audit. Members are required to complete at least 20 verifiable hours of CPD per year and 120 hours over a 3-year rolling period.
With shared responsibility for the implementation of educational requirements, SKAU focuses on providing relevant CPD courses and training opportunities to its members. The Commission of Education evaluates CPD fulfillment on an annual basis for its members in accordance with the requirements of the law. Non-compliance cases are relayed to SKAU’s Disciplinary Commission.
Its educational seminars and conferences cover technical accounting and auditing topics, updates on audit regulation, and the linkage between information technology and auditing. To reach more members and to facilitate wider access to educational material, the SKAU also offers e-learning courses. It organizes and delivers courses based on the results of the annual quality assurance results. SKAU reports that in 2017, it provided members with access to 75 seminars (714 hours) as well as 17 e-learning courses (63 hours); and further reports that 125 auditors completed the e-learning courses that year.
In addition, SKAU provides implementation guidance for international standards.
SKAU is encouraged to participate where relevant in sharing its perspective and experiences in implementing national accountancy education requirements that meet the revised IES as part of IFAC’s new approach to accountancy education. It is also encouraged to report on the extent of compliance of the existing overall education requirements in Slovakia with those of the revised 2015 IES (which includes other PAOs in the jurisdiction).
- SMO 3: International Standards on Auditing
Act No. 423/2015 on Statutory Audit specifies the auditing standards that should be applied in the conduct of audits. Article 19 stipulates that all statutory audits must be conducted in accordance with ISA as issued by IAASB. The Úrad pre dohl’ad nad vykonom auditu (UDVA) monitors compliance with these standards
To support implementation, SKAU translated 2014 version of the Handbook, which is available on the IFAC website.
SKAU monitors new and amended standards, as well as other pronouncements issued by the IAASB, and provides comments on Exposure Drafts. It updates members on an ongoing basis on new and revised audit regulations. Furthermore, it updates training courses to include revised standard-related topics.
SKAU hosts conferences on technical audit-related topics throughout the year to raise awareness and enhance members’ knowledge, and issues implementation guidance to members on a regular basis. In addition, it offers continuing professional development courses that cover technical audit issues. It also operates an online service to assist members with ISA-related queries, and will then include answers to complex questions in subsequently published implementation guidance for auditors.
- SMO 4: Code of Ethics for Professional Accountants
SKAU is responsible for issuing the Auditor’s Code of Ethics for auditors under the oversight of the Úrad pre dohl’ad nad vykonom auditu (UDVA). Article 2(18) stipulates that the Auditor’s Code of Ethics issued by SKAU, must be compliant with the IESBA Code of Ethics as issued by IESBA. It remains unclear if the second PAO in the jurisdiction, the Slovak Chamber of Certified Accountants, stipulates any ethical requirements for its members, which are accountants.
SKAU reports that it has ongoing processes in place to monitor changes to the IESBA Code of Ethics in order to complete new translations for promulgation. SKAU reports that the 2016 IESBA Code of Ethics was translated and made available on the SKAU’s website in 2017.
To further support the effective implementation of the Code, SKAU: (i) raises awareness of the Code among regulators, universities, judiciary and legislative powers, and government; (ii) disseminates information to relevant stakeholders about the changes to its Code and new, proposed, and revised provisions of the IESBA Code of Ethics; and (iii) includes ethical requirements in its training programs in collaboration with UDVA.
The SKAU participates in the international standard-setting process by providing comments on IESBA Exposure Drafts.
SKAU is encouraged to consider how to reduce the time lag in translating the most recent version of the Handbook, which is the 2018 International Code of Ethics. It should also submit a permission request to translate the 2018 International Code of Ethics, which became available in June 2019.
- SMO 5: International Public Sector Accounting Standards
The Ministry of Finance (MoF) is responsible for accounting standard-setting for public sector entities under the Act No. 431/2002 Coll. on Accounting (the Accounting Act). SKAU reports that the National Public Sector Standards, which are cash-based, constitute the current financial reporting framework. The Ministry of Finance plans to complete the transition to accrual-basis reporting, using IPSAS as a reference point, by 2023.
On an ongoing basis, SKAU organizes and offers seminars, along with the Ministry of Finance, on IPSAS and on the preparation of public sector financial statements. It also prepares publications, some jointly with the MoF, on auditing in the public sector. Lastly, SKAU has made available an online expert to answer questions on IPSAS.
- SMO 6: Investigation and Discipline
The Act No. 423/2015 on Statutory Audit requires the establishment of an investigation and disciplinary (I&D) system for auditors. SKAU operates an I&D system for its members under the supervision of Úrad pre dohl’ad nad vykonom auditu (UDVA). It is required under law to report all complaints received to UDVA on an annual basis (Article 40). SKAU reports that the existing I&D arrangements in the jurisdiction are aligned with SMO 6 requirements. It remains unclear if the second PAO in the jurisdiction, the Slovak Chamber of Certified Accountants, operates an I&D system for its members, which are accountants.
SKAU’s Supervisory Board comprises five members that are approved by the General Assembly to serve four-year terms. It is responsible for investigating members and sending proposals for disciplinary action to the SKAU Disciplinary Commission. The Disciplinary Commission may impose sanctions outlined in Article 49 of the law not later than within three years after the date when the breach took place. Sanctions may be appealed by the individual subject to disciplinary action within 15 days after the delivery of the decision. Members in both the Supervisory Board and Disciplinary Commission may be re-elected for a maximum of two consecutive terms.
SKAU assessed its I&D policies and processes against the requirements of SMO 6 and reports that they are aligned with the best practices. SKAU reports that it reviews its procedures on an ongoing basis to maintain alignment.
The institute reports that it raises both member and public awareness of the I&D procedures. SKAU has developed a channel for the public to make a complaint via its website. In its annual report, SKAU also includes a section on the disciplinary actions that have been taken throughout the year.
In the interest of transparency and raising public awareness, the institute also indicated that it details the results of all disciplinary proceedings on its webpage.
SKAU is encouraged to consider promoting the adoption of an I&D system that is in line with SMO 6 requirements to regulators and other professional accountancy organization(s) that are involved in the I&D of professional accountants with the objective of ensuring full compliance at the jurisdictional level.
- SMO 7: International Financial Reporting Standards
The Ministry of Finance is responsible for the adoption of accounting standards in Slovakia in accordance with Act No. 431/2002 Coll. On Accounting (the Accounting Act).
In accordance with the EU statutory framework, Regulation EC 1606/2002, as transposed into national legislation, listed entities are required to apply EU-endorsed IFRS Standards for consolidated financial statements. In addition, all other companies are permitted to apply IFRS for their consolidated financial statements.
Slovakia used an option under the framework to: (i) require EU-endorsed IFRS in both consolidated and separate company financial statements of all public interest entities (PIEs); (ii) permit EU-endorsed IFRS in the separate company financial statements of all companies whose securities are traded in a regulated market that are non-PIEs; and (iii) require EU-endorsed IFRS as adopted by the EU in the consolidated statements of companies whose securities do not trade in a public market.
IFRS for Small and Medium-sized Entities is not adopted in the jurisdiction, nor is it under consideration until the EU Accounting Directive changes. Nevertheless, SKAU raises awareness of the standards by posting them on its website.
SKAU supports implementation of EU-endorsed IFRS in Slovakia by organizing and delivering training on IFRS via annual conferences and seminars. It also provides members with online courses and online access to an IFRS expert. Additionally, SKAU reports that it updates its members on IASB activities and pronouncements by posting relevant information on its website.
SKAU is encouraged to collaborate with other professional accountancy organization(s) in the jurisdiction in providing training, particularly if their members are involved in financial statement preparation.
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