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Title: The proportionality of ISAs to Maltese SMEs
Authors: Degiorgio, Andrea
Keywords: Auditing -- Standards
Auditing -- Malta
Small business -- Malta
Issue Date: 2019
Citation: Degiorgio, A. (2019). The proportionality of ISAs to Maltese SMEs (Master's dissertation).
Abstract: Purpose: The objectives of this study aim to obtain an understanding on the proportionality of the ISAs from the local practitioners’ perspective. The study also focuses on the challenges that the current standards impose on local practitioners and explores possible solutions to better accommodate Maltese SMEs. After having evaluated the current scenario, the study focuses on the way forward and what possible alternatives, apart from the audit, can be appropriate for Malta. Design: A qualitative mono methodology approach was adopted to achieve the objectives of the study. For the purpose of this research, ten semi-structured interviews with local practitioners were carried out. For the purpose of this study, six sole practitioners, two auditors from a mid-tier firm and two auditors from a Big Four firm were interviewed. Findings: The importance of SMEs to the Maltese economy is made on a regular basis during this study. Given that currently only a single set of auditing standards exists, challenges are imposed on SMPs. From the findings of this study one may conclude that the current ISAs are too demanding for the local scenario and that they require more guidance. However, practitioners also support the need for assurance on SME financial statements since they play an important role in Malta’s economy. Possible alternatives were explored throughout the study from which the most favoured solution resulted to be Review Engagements since they provide some sort of assurance, added value and lesser of a burden on SMPs and SMEs. Conclusions: From the various interviews carried out, one can conclude that the findings support the fact that the current ISAs are relevant and that can be applied to all sizes of the company subject to the auditor’s professional judgement. However, even though the current ISAs are currently viewed as the optimal solution, practitioners still view them as being onerous and too demanding for the local scenario. Throughout this research alternatives are viewed and from the findings one can elaborate that the most attractive option is to create a boundary whereby SME financial statements should be reviewed rather than audited. Value: It is hoped that from the following study, awareness is raised regarding the proportionality of the ISAs to the local scenario and that a more appropriate solution is adopted to better accommodate SMPs and SMEs.
Description: M.ACCTY.
Appears in Collections:Dissertations - FacEma - 2019
Dissertations - FacEMAAcc - 2019

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