Technical news

The latest standards and technical developments

Members’ handbook

Update no. 241:

  • Removes various superseded standards in Volume I and Volume III; and
  • Revises various auditing and assurance standards and a practice note in Volume III to conform to the International Auditing and Assurance Standards Board’s (IAASB) Conforming Amendments to the IAASB International Standards as a Result of the Revised IESBA Code issued in April.

Update no. 242:
The Institute’s Liquidation and Insolvency Guidance Notes (LIGNs, previously, Insolvency Guidance Notes) have been updated, primarily to take account of legislative and regulatory changes. They are:

  • LIGN (1) – Scope;
  • LIGN (2) – A insolvency practitioner’s investigation into the affairs of an insolvent company;
  • LIGN (3) – Preparation of insolvency practitioners’ receipts and payments accounts; and
  • LIGN (4) – Disqualification of directors – statutory reports.

Financial reporting

Invitation to comment

The Institute is seeking comments on the Exposure Draft Proposed Amendments to Accounting Guideline 5 Merger Accounting for Common Control Combinations by 16 October.

New recordings available for discussions on Exposure Draft General Presentation and Disclosures

Recordings of the following are now available:

  • The International Accounting Standards Board (IASB) and the European Accounting Association virtual research seminar on 10 July, providing an overview of the exposure draft and relevant academic literature.
  • The third in a series of live webinars from staff of the IASB in Putonghua on 29 July to cover the detailed proposals in the exposure draft for disaggregation, the analysis of operating expenses, and unusual income and expenses.

IASB’s third webcast on Request for Information: Comprehensive Review of the IFRS for SMEs Standard

The IASB has published the third in a series of webcasts about Request for Information: Comprehensive Review of the IFRS for SMEs Standard (RFI). The RFI seeks views on whether and how to align the IFRS for SMEs Standard with the full International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS). Members can submit comments on the RFI to the Institute by 11 September.

IASB two-part webcast on IFRS 17

The IASB’s two-part webcast, providing an overview of the June 2020 amendments to IFRS 17 Insurance Contracts is now available. The two parts cover:

  • Part 1 – amendments to the requirements other than transition; and
  • Part 2 – amendments to the transition requirements.

Deferral of effective date of amendments to IAS 1

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the IASB has issued an amendment to defer by one year the effective date of Classification of Liabilities as Current or Non-current, which amends International Accounting Standard (IAS) 1 Presentation of Financial Statements. The deferral will provide companies with more time to implement any classification changes resulting from these amendments, which are now effective for annual reporting periods beginning on or after 1 January 2023. The Institute will issue equivalent amendments to Hong Kong Accounting Standard 1 in August.

IASB July 2020 podcast and update

The July podcast, focusing on the IASB discussions at its monthly meeting, and the July Update newsletter, highlighting the tentative decisions reached at that meeting, are now available.

Auditing and assurance

Institute submission

The Institute has submitted comments on the IAASB’s Proposed Non-Authoritative Guidance, Extended External Reporting Assurance.

Institute’s Auditing and Assurance Standards Committee Meeting Minutes

Minutes of the 383rd meeting is now available.

Revision to suggested Chinese translation of unmodified auditor’s reports

The Institute has revised the suggested Chinese translation of unmodified auditor’s reports to conform to Hong Kong Standard on Auditing 700 (Revised) Forming an Opinion and Reporting on Financial Statements revised in July.

AICPA releases non-authoritative guidance on auditing digital assets

The Association of International Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) has updated its free practice aid, Accounting for and auditing of digital assets, to provide non-authoritative guidance to auditors in assessing whether to accept or continue audit engagements that involve digital assets.

IAASB auditor reporting post-implementation review

The IAASB invites interested stakeholders to complete an online survey on their experiences and feedback on the Auditor Reporting Standards by 23 October.

IAASB audit considerations for the impact of COVID-19

The IAASB Chair provides an update to the IAASB’s COVID-19 response.

IFAC webinar series on practical audit quality considerations

In this webinar, a panel of audit experts shared their perspectives and practical insights on auditor reporting in the pandemic environment, and reflected generally on lessons learned over the last few months. A summary of key takeaways from the discussion is also available.


Institute’s Ethics Committee Meeting Minutes

Minutes of the 243rd meeting is now available.

Illustrative examples on referral fees

The Institute has published illustrative examples to illustrate the application of and key considerations for practising members in payment of commission/referral fee under Section 900.13, Chapter C of the Code of Ethics for Professional Accountants.

The IESBA’s July meeting

Audio recordings of the International Ethics Standards Board for Accountants’ (IESBA) July virtual meeting are now available.

lFAC Exploring the IESBA Code 7 and 8

  • The exchange of gifts and hospitality can be an important factor in building and strengthening business relationships, but can threaten a professional accountant’s ability to be objective and act with integrity. This seventh instalment of Exploring the IESBA Code addresses inducements and how to deal with them for compliance with the code.
  • The eighth instalment explains the actions that professional accountants in business are expected to take when they become aware of, or suspect a non-compliance with laws and regulations within their employing organizations.

Applying the code of ethics conceptual framework in COVID-19 circumstances

Staff of the Accounting Professional & Ethical Standards Board and the IESBA released a publication to provide guidance on the application of the conceptual framework in the International Code of Ethics for Professional Accountants (including International Independence Standards) to scenarios for professional accountants in practice and in business relating to taxation and valuation arising due to the pandemic.

Corporate finance

Invitation to comment

The Stock Exchange of Hong Kong is seeking comments on Consultation Paper on Proposals to Introduce a Paperless Listing & Subscription Regime, Online Display of Documents and Reduction of the Types of Documents on Display by 24 September.


Official Receiver’s Office letter to trustees in bankruptcy cases regarding the government’s Cash Payout Scheme

The Official Receiver’s Office has issued a letter on 22 July advising on factors that should be considered by insolvency practitioners in determining whether or not to claim the HK$10,000 received by an undischarged bankrupt from the government’s Cash Payout Scheme as after-acquired property.


Announcements by the Inland Revenue Department

Members may wish to be aware of the following matters:

  • Inland Revenue (Amendment) (Profits Tax Concessions for Insurance-related Businesses) Bill 2019 passed.
  • Annual Report on Performance Pledge 2019-20.
  • DIPN 47 (Revised).
  • DIPN 48 (Revised).
  • Block Extension Scheme for lodgement of 2019/20 tax returns [Extended due date for “D” Code returns].
  • Legislative Council question on demand-side management measures for the property market.
  • Stamp Duty statistics (June and July 2020).
  • Latest arrangement of IRD public services.

Legislation and other initiatives

Announcements by the government

Members may wish to be aware of the following matters:

  • Extension of restrictions under the Prevention and Control of Disease (Requirements and Directions) (Business and Premises) Regulation (Cap. 599F).
  • Travel-related restrictions.
  • Public service arrangements.
  • Official Receiver’s Office public service arrangements.
  • Companies Registry public service arrangements.
  • Passage of Limited Partnership Fund Bill.
  • Current exemptions for general meetings – see Companies Registry frequently asked questions.
  • Tightened testing and quarantine arrangement for sea and air crew.

AML notices

The updated list of terrorists and terrorist associates designated by the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) was gazetted on 17 July pursuant to the United Nations (Anti-Terrorism Measures) Ordinance (Cap. 575). See the related UNSC press release.

For the current lists of terrorists, terrorist associates and relevant persons/ entities under United Nations sanctions, members should refer regularly to the Institute’s AML webpage. Other useful documents and guidance can also be found on the same page.

Please refer to the full versions of Technical News on the Institute’s website 

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