Scope of this Auditing Standard
This Auditing Standard deals with the auditor’s responsibility to communicate key audit matters in the auditor’s report. It is intended to address both the auditor’s judgement as to what to communicate in the auditor’s report and the form and content of such communication.
The purpose of communicating key audit matters is to enhance the communicative value of the auditor’s report by providing greater transparency about the audit that was performed. Communicating key audit matters provides additional information to intended users of the financial report (“intended users”) to assist them in understanding those matters that, in the auditor’s professional judgement, were of most significance in the audit of the financial report of the current period. Communicating key audit matters may also assist intended users in understanding the entity and areas of significant management judgement in the audited financial report. (Ref: Para. A1–A4)
The communication of key audit matters in the auditor’s report may also provide intended users a basis to further engage with management and those charged with governance about certain matters relating to the entity, the audited financial report, or the audit that was performed.
Communicating key audit matters in the auditor’s report is in the context of the auditor having formed an opinion on the financial report as a whole. Communicating key audit matters in the auditor’s report is not:
- A substitute for disclosures in the financial report that the applicable financial reporting framework requires management to make, or that are otherwise necessary to achieve fair presentation;
- A substitute for the auditor expressing a modified opinion when required by the circumstances of a specific audit engagement in accordance with ASA 705;
- A substitute for reporting in accordance with ASA 570 when a material uncertainty exists relating to events or conditions that may cast significant doubt on an entity’s ability to continue as a going concern; or
- A separate opinion on individual matters. (Ref: Para. A5–A8)
This Auditing Standard applies to audits of general purpose financial reports of listed entities and circumstances when the auditor otherwise decides to communicate key audit matters in the auditor’s report. This Auditing Standard also applies when the auditor is required by law or regulation to communicate key audit matters in the auditor’s report. However, ASA 705 prohibits the auditor from communicating key audit matters when the auditor disclaims an opinion on the financial report, unless such reporting is required by law or regulation.
Key audit matters are not required to be communicated in auditor’s reports on condensed financial reports prepared in accordance with AASB 134 Interim Financial Reporting.