ЗАКОН РЕСПУБЛИКИ БЕЛАРУСЬ

(Unofficial translation)

 

Law of the Republic of Belarus

July 12, 2013 No 56-Z

[Amended as of July 17, 2017]

On Auditing Activity

Adopted by the House of Representatives on June 19, 2013
Approved by the Council of the Republic on June 28, 2013

CHAPTER 1
GENERAL PROVISIONS

Article 1. Subject matter of regulation of this Law

This Law determines legal bases for carrying out auditing activity in the territory of the Republic of Belarus and also regulates relations arising in the process of carrying out such an activity.

Article 2. Main terms used in this Law and their definitions

For the purposes of this Law the following main terms and their definitions are used:

audited persons – legal persons of the Republic of Belarus, their affiliates, representative offices and other separate divisions having a separate balance sheet, their affiliates and representative offices of foreign and international organizations, holdings, simple partnerships (participants of a contract on joint activity), individual entrepreneurs, in relation to which the audit of bookkeeping (financial) reports is conducted and/or other auditing services are rendered (hereinafter unless otherwise established – auditing services);

audit of bookkeeping (financial) statements – an auditing service on independent assessment of bookkeeping (financial) statements of the audited person, included the one drawn up in accordance with International Financial Reporting Standards and their Interpretations (hereinafter – IFRS) or the legislation of other states with a view to express an auditor’s opinion about its fairness;

auditor – a natural person having the qualification certificate of the auditor issued by the Ministry of Finance of the Republic of Belarus;

auditing activity – entrepreneurial activity on rendering auditing services by audit organizations, auditors carrying out activity as individual entrepreneurs (hereinafter – auditors-individual entrepreneurs);

auditor’s report – a document drawn up by an audit organization, auditor-individual entrepreneur according to results of rendering auditing services and containing an auditor’s opinion expressed in an established form;

fairness of bookkeeping (financial) statements – a degree of accuracy of bookkeeping (financial) statements data which allows the users to draw, on the basis of bookkeeping (financial) statements data, true conclusions on financial position, financial performance and changes in financial position of audited persons and take substantiated economic decisions based on these conclusions;

customers of auditing services – audited persons, owner of the property (founders, participants) of audited persons and also other interested persons which concluded, upon the consent of the audited person (unless otherwise provided by the legislation of the Republic of Belarus), a contract of rendering auditing services with an audit organization, auditor-individual entrepreneur, auditor;

quality control for an audit organization, auditor-individual entrepreneur, auditor – a system of organizational measures, techniques and procedures on inspection of observance of rules of the auditing activity by an audit organization, auditor-individual entrepreneur, auditor and also of the soundness of conclusions formed by them and expressed in the form of an auditor’s opinion.

Article 3. Fundamental principles of auditing activity

Fundamental principles of auditing activity are independence, confidentiality, professional competence, professional behaviour.

The principle of independence consists in that an audit organization, auditor-individual entrepreneur, auditor must not have a financial, material or other interest in the activity of the audited person, as well as any dependency on third person, which may affect the objectivity of the auditor’s opinion.

The principle of confidentiality consists in that an audit organization, auditor-individual entrepreneur, auditor shall not disseminate information about activity of the audited person, customer of auditing services, shall not provide such information and documents obtained or drawn up in the process of rendering auditing services to third persons, and also shall not disclose data contained in those documents without the consent of the audited person, customer of auditing services, with the exception of cases provided for by this Law, other legislative acts of the Republic of Belarus or the contract of rendering auditing services.

The principle of professional competence consists in that an auditor is obliged to have necessary professional qualifications that allow him to ensure rendering quality auditing services.

The principle of professional behaviour consists in that an auditor abides by the priority of public interests, common moral norms, demonstrates impartiality and neutrality while considering professional matters, forming conclusions and opinions, and also abstains from committing actions discrediting the auditor.

Article 4. Legislation of the Republic of Belarus on auditing activity

The legislation of the Republic of Belarus on auditing activity is based on the Constitution of the Republic of Belarus and consists of this Law, other laws of the Republic of Belarus, normative legal acts of the President of the Republic of Belarus and other acts of legislation of the Republic of Belarus adopted in accordance therewith.

Article 5. State regulation of auditing activity

State regulation of auditing activity is carried out by the President of the Republic of Belarus, the Council of Ministers of the Republic of Belarus, the National Bank of the Republic of Belarus, the Ministry of Finance of the Republic of Belarus.

The President of the Republic of Belarus determines the single state policy and carries out other powers in the sphere of auditing activity in accordance with the Constitution of the Republic of Belarus and legislative acts of the Republic of Belarus.

The Council of Ministers of the Republic of Belarus:

ensures the implementation of the single state policy in the sphere of auditing activity;

establishes the order of performing attestation for the right to obtain the qualification certificate of the auditor and the order of confirming the qualification by the auditors;

establishes the list of flagrant violations of the order of carrying out auditing activity being the grounds for annulment of the qualification certificate of the auditor;

carries out other powers in the sphere of auditing activity in accordance with the Constitution of the Republic of Belarus, this Law, other laws of the Republic of Belarus and acts of the President of the Republic of Belarus.

The National Bank of the Republic of Belarus:

establishes the qualification requirements and requirements for business reputation for auditors rendering auditing services in banks and non-bank credit and financial organizations (hereinafter – banks), bank groups and bank holdings and also the order of performing the assessment of conformity to such requirements;

establishes requirements for audit organizations, auditors-individual entrepreneurs carrying out auditing activity in banks, bank groups, bank holdings, and also the order of  performing the assessment of conformity to such requirements;

adopts normative legal acts of the Republic of Belarus in the sphere of auditing activity in banks, bank groups, bank holdings;

determines the composition of bookkeeping (financial) statements subject to mandatory audit in banks, bank groups, bank holdings;

determines the volume of data being included in the auditor’s report and other documents to be drawn up according to results of annual bookkeeping (financial) statements of banks and annual consolidated bookkeeping (financial) statements about the activity of a bank group, bank holding;

determines the order of presenting the auditor’s report and other documents to be drawn up according to results of bookkeeping (financial) statements to the National Bank of the Republic of Belarus, to banks in which the audit of bookkeeping (financial) statements has been conducted, to head organizations of a bank group, bank holding, and also to the owner of their property (founders, participants) to the board of director (supervisory board);

controls the observance of the legislation of the Republic of Belarus on auditing activity in banks, bank groups, bank holdings by audit organizations, auditors – individual entrepreneurs;

carries out other powers in the sphere of auditing activity in accordance with the legislative acts of the Republic of Belarus.

The National Bank of the Republic of Belarus is entitled to request information necessary for carrying out its functions in the sphere of auditing activity from audit organizations and auditors – individual entrepreneurs carrying out auditing activity in banks, bank groups, bank holdings.

The Ministry of Finance of the Republic of Belarus:

implements the single state policy in the sphere of auditing activity;

develops and approves the national standards of auditing activity, and also adopts other normative legal acts of the Republic of Belarus and established forms of documents in the sphere of auditing activity (with the exception of auditing activity in banks, bank groups, bank holdings);

performs attestation for the right to obtain the qualification certificate and confirmation of  the qualification by the auditors;

  keeps records of audit organizations, auditors-individual entrepreneurs, auditors;

controls the observance of the legislation of the Republic of Belarus on auditing activity in banks, bank groups, bank holdings by audit organizations, auditors – individual entrepreneurs (with the exception of auditing activity in banks, bank groups, bank holdings);

summarizes the information and performs analysis of carrying out of the auditing activity by audit organizations, auditors – individual entrepreneurs;

represents, within its powers, the Republic of Belarus in international organizations dealing with matters of auditing activity;

carries out other powers in the sphere of auditing activity in accordance with the legislation of the Republic of Belarus.

The Ministry of Finance of the Republic of Belarus is entitled to request information necessary for carrying out its functions in the sphere of auditing activity from audit organizations, auditors – individual entrepreneurs carrying out auditing activity.

chapter 2
auditor, audit organization, audit association

Article 6. Auditor

An auditor renders auditing services as employee of an audit organization (worker of an auditor-individual entrepreneur) or as auditor-individual entrepreneur.

An auditor put on record in healthcare organizations in relation to a psychic disorder (illness), dependence syndrome: alcohol-related (alcoholism), related to narcotic drugs or psychotropic substances (narcomania), related to toxicomanic substances (toxicomania), or having non-cleared or non-expunged record of conviction for crimes against interests of the service, property and the order of carrying out economic activity, and also for committing other crimes related to abusing official powers has no right to render auditing services.

An auditor has the right to carry out auditing activity as auditor-individual entrepreneur if he has rendered auditing services as employee of an audit organization (worker of an auditor-individual entrepreneur) at least for two years.

Article 7. Audit organization

Audit organization – a commercial organization carrying out auditing activity.

An audit organization must have on pay roll at least five auditors for which that organization is a primary place of work.

For the purposes of this Article a primary place of work is understood to be work for an employer which, in accordance of the legislation of the Republic of Belarus, is granted the right to conclude and terminate a labour contract and which conducts the labour book of the worker.

An audit organization shall carry out auditing activity and render professional services specified by part two of Article 16 of this Law only engaging employees being on pay roll of that organization.

As head of an audit organization may by appointed an auditor that has rendered auditing services as employee of an audit organization (worker of an auditor-individual entrepreneur) at least for two years and/or as auditor-individual entrepreneur at least for two years.

Additional requirements toward an audit organization carrying out a mandatory audit of annual bookkeeping (financial) statements drawn up in accordance with IFRS are:

availability, on the site of the audit organization in the global computer network Internet, of the information about its activity according to the requirement toward such information, established by the Ministry of Finance of the Republic of Belarus;

at least two auditors from among those specified in part two of this Article, having special training in the sphere of IFRS shall be on the pay roll of the audit organization.

Article 8. Audit association

Audit organizations and/or auditors-individual entrepreneurs may create audit associations in accordance with the legislation of the Republic Belarus with a view to coordinate their activity and also to represent and protect common interests.

An audit association is entitled to:

represent interests of members of associations in state, public and international organizations;

establish internal rules of auditing activity binding for members of the association;

approve the code of professional ethics for auditors binding for members of the association;

submit to the Ministry of Finance of the Republic of Belarus proposals on improving the legislation of the Republic of Belarus in the sphere of auditing activity;

participate in development of curriculum and study-guide documents, information and analysis materials, training aids, used in preparation for attestation for the right to obtain the qualification certificate of the auditor;

summarize the experience of the work of audit organizations, auditors-individual entrepreneurs, work out recommendations on observing the rules of auditing activity and other matters related to the performance of such activity, provide methodical assistance to audit organizations, auditors-individual entrepreneurs;

exercise external control over the quality of work of audit organizations, auditors-individual entrepreneurs being the members of the audit organization in accordance with the statute and internal rules of auditing activity of the audit association;

exercise other functions determined by the statute of the audit association.

chapter 3
rights, duties, Liablity of audit organizations, auditors-individual entrepreneurs, audited persons, customers of auditing services. settlement of disputes

Article 9. Rights of audit organizations, auditors-individual entrepreneurs

Audit organizations, auditors-individual entrepreneurs are entitled to:

determine independently forms and methods of rendering auditing services;

inspect primary accounting documents of the audited person, bookkeeping registers and other documents about its activity, actual availability of certain assets and liabilities, compliance thereof with the date of accounting and bookkeeping (financial) statements;

take part in conducting the inventory of assets and liabilities of the audited person;

receive, in accordance with the legislation of the Republic of Belarus, at a written request the date about activity of the audited person from republican bodies of state administration, other state organizations subordinated to the Government of the Republic of Belarus and from other organizations in the volume necessary for fulfilment of the contract of rendering auditing services;

engage, on a contractual basis in accordance with the legislation, as experts persons not being on the payroll of the audit organization and having special skills, knowledge and experience in a certain sphere of activity other than the auditing;

when concluding a contract of rendering auditing services, receive information necessary for assessment of the work under such a contract from officials of the audited person;

receive from officials of the audited person explanations in an oral and/or written form, and also in electronic form, concerning the issues arising in the process of rendering auditing services;

refuse to fulfil a contract of rendering auditing services in the cases of failure of the audited person to provide necessary documents, arbitrary interference of the audited person in the process of rendering auditing services, detection in the process of rendering auditing services of circumstances affecting or capable to affect the objectivity of the auditor’s opinion;

exercise other rights not contradicting the legislation of the Republic of Belarus and resulting from the essence of legal relations determined by the contract of rendering auditing services.

Article 10. Duties of audit organizations, auditors-individual entrepreneurs

Audit organizations, auditors-individual entrepreneurs are obliged to:

fulfil the requirements of the legislation of the Republic of Belarus when carrying out auditing activity and rendering professional services;

keep records of  concluded contracts on rendering auditing services;

render auditing and professional services ensuring quality thereof;

compensate, in the order established by the legislation of the Republic of Belarus, damages caused in the case of failure to fulfil or undue fulfilment of obligations stipulated by the contract of rendering auditing services, including in the case of a punishable failure to fulfill the duty on rendering auditing services ensuring quality thereof, inclusive of the instances of subsequent detection by controlling (supervisory) bodies of violations of financial and economic activity of the audited person which have not been detected in the process of rendering auditing services;

exercise internal control over the quality of work of auditors in accordance with internal rules of auditing activity established by the audit organization or auditor-individual entrepreneur;

ensure preservation of received documents, including in electronic form, of audited persons;

refuse to render auditing services in order to be in compliance with the principle of independence;

notify the customer of auditing services about detected violations in accounting and/or another bookkeeping, bookkeeping (financial) and/or another statements and provide recommendations on elimination of detected violations based on the  results of rendering auditing services;

inform the owner of the property (founders, participants) of the audited person in a written form upon results of the conducted audit of bookkeeping (financial) statements about the data evidencing a violation of the legislation of the Republic of Belarus as a result of which a damage has been or may be caused to a natural person and/or to a legal person, and/or to the state in the amount exceeding 1000 base units as of the date of detection of the violation of the legislation of the Republic of Belarus;

provide an auditor’s report in accordance with the requirements of the legislation of the Republic of Belarus;

ensure the preservation of documents drawn up by the audit organization, auditor-individual entrepreneur, including in electronic form, in the process of rendering auditing services for at least five years from the date of completion of rendering auditing services under the contract of rendering auditing services, unless otherwise established by the legislation of the Republic of Belarus;

ensure the compliance with the principles of confidentiality, professional competence and professional behaviour;

fulfill the conditions of the contract of rendering auditing services;

submit the information about carrying out auditing activity to the Ministry of Finance of the Republic of Belarus in the order established by the legislation of the Republic of Belarus;

when control (supervisory) bodies perform control over the observance of the legislation of the Republic of Belarus on auditing activity, provide all information necessary for the inspection, including in electronic form;

fulfill, in accordance with legislation of the Republic of Belarus, other duties, including those arising from the essence of legal relations determined by the contract of rendering auditing services.

Article 11. Liability of audit organizations, auditors-individual entrepreneurs

Audit organizations, auditors-individual entrepreneurs bear liability in accordance with the legislative acts of the Republic of Belarus for:

violation of the legislation of the Republic of Belarus on auditing activity;

violation of conditions of the contract of rendering auditing services;

accuracy of the auditor’s opinion expressed in the auditor’s report;

issuance (signing) of a knowingly false auditor’s report.

Article 12. Rights of audited persons, customers of auditing services

Audited persons, customers of auditing services are entitled to:

independently choose an audit organization, auditor-individual entrepreneur for rendering auditing services, unless otherwise provided by the legislative acts of the Republic of Belarus;

receive from the audit organization, auditor-individual entrepreneur an auditor’s report, information about the requirements of the legislation of the Republic of Belarus or legislation of other states on which their remarks and conclusions are based, about detected violations, and also recommendation on elimination of such violations;

refuse to fulfill the contract of rendering auditing services or to demand substitution of an auditor in the case of failure of the audit organization, auditor-individual entrepreneur to fulfil or undue fulfilment of the obligations;

inform the Ministry of Finance of the Republic of Belarus, the National Bank of the Republic of Belarus and other authorized bodies about violations of the legislation of the Republic of Belarus on auditing activity committed by the audit organization, auditor-individual entrepreneur;

receive compensation, in the order established by the legislation of the Republic of Belarus, for damages caused in the case of failure to fulfil or undue fulfilment of obligations stipulated by the contract of rendering auditing services, including in the case of a punishable failure to fulfil the duty on rendering auditing services ensuring quality thereof, inclusive of the instances of subsequent detection by controlling (supervisory) bodies of violations of financial and economic activity of the audited person which have not been detected in the process of rendering auditing services;

exercise other rights not contradicting the legislation of the Republic of Belarus and resulting from the essence of legal relations determined by the contract of rendering auditing services.

Article 13. Duties of audited persons, customers of auditing services

Audited persons, customers of auditing services are obliged to:

create for the audit organization, auditor-individual entrepreneur conditions for timely and quality-ensuring rendering of auditing services;

fulfil the requirements of the audit organization, auditor-individual entrepreneur arising out of the legislation of the Republic of Belarus and conditions of the contract of rendering auditing services;

abstain from interference in the process of rendering of auditing services by the audit organization, auditor-individual entrepreneur;

abstain from committing actions directed at concealing (restricting access to) information requested by the audit organization, auditor-individual entrepreneur, and in this case the fact that information contains data constituting commercial secret cannot be considered as a ground for refusing its submission;

direct, on the demand of the audit organization, auditor-individual entrepreneur, a written request in their names to third persons for receiving necessary information;

fulfil requirements of this Law and other acts of legislation of the Republic of Belarus on auditing services;

fulfil the conditions of the contract of rendering auditing services;

fulfil, in accordance with legislation of the Republic of Belarus, other duties, including those arising from the essence of legal relations determined by the contract of rendering auditing services.

Audited persons, in addition to the duties specified by part one of this Article, are obliged to:

when concluding a contract of rendering auditing services, provide information necessary for assessment of the volume of work under this contract to the audit organization, auditor-individual entrepreneur;

provide the audit organization, auditor-individual entrepreneur with all necessary documents and information for timely and quality-ensuring rendering of auditing services, give explanations in an oral and/or written form, and also in electronic form, concerning the issues arising in the process of rendering auditing services;

eliminate violations detected by the audit organization, auditor-individual entrepreneur and introduce corresponding changes in bookkeeping (financial) statements and/or tax declarations (calculations) within 30 days from the date of receipt of the auditor’s report;

in the case of conducting a mandatory audit of annual bookkeeping (financial) statements, notify about the fact of its conducting the tax bodies at the place of putting on record not later than on 1 July of the year following the reported one.

Article 14. Liability of audited persons

Audited persons are liable for completeness and accuracy of documents provided, including in electronic form, to the audit organization, auditor-individual entrepreneur for rendering auditing services.

The conduct of audit of bookkeeping (financial) statements does not release the audited person from the liability for committed violations of the legislation of the Republic of Belarus.

Evasion of the head of a legal person from the conduct of a mandatory audit of annual bookkeeping (financial) statements entails the liability in accordance with the legislative acts of the Republic of Belarus.

Article 15. Settlement of disputes

Disputes arising between audit organizations, auditors-individual entrepreneurs, auditors, and also between them and audited persons, customers of auditing services, are to be settled in court and in other forms provided by the legislation of the Republic of Belarus and the contract of rendering auditing services.

chapter 4
performance of auditing activity

Article 16. Auditing activity and professional services

When performing auditing activity, audit organizations, auditors-individual entrepreneurs conduct the audit of bookkeeping (financial) statements and render other auditing services the list and the order of rendering of which are established by the national rules of auditing activity.

Audit organizations, auditors-individual entrepreneurs may, along with performance of auditing activity, render, subject to observance of the requirements of the legislation of the Republic of Belarus, the following professional services:

conduct of accounting and/or another bookkeeping, drawing up of bookkeeping (financial) and/or other statements, including in accordance with IFRS, legislation of other states, drawing up tax declarations (calculations);

arrangement and restoration of accounting and/or another bookkeeping;

analysis of economic activity of an organization, assessment of entrepreneurial risks, financial planning;

development and analysis of investment projects, drawing up business plans;

assessment of the value of civil rights objects;

consulting services;

automatization of accounting and introduction of information technologies;

development of methodical guides and recommendations in issues of performance of auditing activity and rendering of professional services;

execution of research and development works in the spheres related to the auditing activity and dissemination of their results, including on paper-based and electronic carriers;

implementation of an educational program of training in organizations, and also of an educational program of instruction courses (lectures, thematic seminars, practical courses, trainings and other types of instruction courses) on issues of performance of auditing activity and rendering professional services.

Audit organizations, auditors-individual entrepreneurs are prohibited to carry out other kinds of entrepreneurial activities than performance of auditing activity and rendering professional services.

Auditing activity in banks, bank groups and bank holdings shall be carried out having regard to the requirements of the legislation of the Republic of Belarus on auditing activity in banks, bank groups and bank holdings.

Rendering auditing and professional services to persons whose bookkeeping (financial) statements and other information related to the accounting and bookkeeping (financial) statements contain the date constituting state secrets shall be carried out in accordance with the legislation of the Republic of Belarus on state secrets.

Article 17. Mandatory audit of bookkeeping (financial) statements

Mandatory audit of bookkeeping (financial) statements – the audit of bookkeeping (financial) statements the mandatory conduct of which is established by this Law and other legislative acts of the Republic of Belarus.

Annual bookkeeping (financial) statements drawn up in accordance with IFRS are subject to mandatory audit if the duty to draw up such statements is established by the legislative acts of the Republic of Belarus.

Each year must be conducted the mandatory audit of annual individual and consolidated (if to be drawn up) bookkeeping (financial) statements drawn up in accordance with the legislation of the Republic of Belarus of:

joint-stock companies obliged according to the legislation of the Republic of Belarus to publish the annual report for general access;

the National Bank of the Republic of Belarus;

banks, bank groups and bank holdings;

exchanges;

insurance organizations, insurance brokers;

residents of the Park of High Technologies;

the organization that carries out the guaranteed compensation of bank deposits of natural persons;

professional participants of securities market;

joint stock investments funds;

managing companies of the investments funds;

other organizations the revenue of which from realization of goods (performance of works, rendering of services) for the preceding reporting year exceeds in equivalent 5 000 000 Euro at the official rate of the Belarusian ruble to Euro established by the National Bank of the Republic of Belarus on December 31 of the preceding reporting year.

Mandatory audit of annual bookkeeping (financial) statements of collective farms (agricultural production co-operatives) and peasant’s (farmer’s) households is not conducted.

Legal persons specified in indent twelve of part three of this Article, shares (stakes in statutory funds) of which belong to the Republic of Belarus and/or its administrative-territorial units or which are referred to organizations of consumers' cooperation are exempt from conducting mandatory audit of annual individual and consolidated (if to be drawn up) bookkeeping (financial) statements drawn up in accordance with the legislation of the Republic of Belarus for the reporting period in which an inspection of their financial and economic activity has been held within the framework of departmental control.

Legal persons specified in indents two, five–seven, nine and twelve of part three of this Article are exempt from the mandatory audit of annual individual and consolidated (if to be drawn up) bookkeeping (financial) statements drawn up in accordance with the legislation of the Republic of Belarus if for this reporting period they conducted the audit of annual bookkeeping (financial) statements drawn up in accordance with IFRS.

The President of the Republic of Belarus may establish other cases of exemption of audited persons from the conduct of mandatory audit of annual bookkeeping (financial) statements.

The mandatory audit of annual bookkeeping (financial) statements being drawn up in accordance with IFRS shall be conducted only by audit organizations.

Mandatory audit of annual bookkeeping (financial) statements must be conducted not later than on June 30 of the year following the reporting one.

Article 18. Rules of auditing activity

Rules of auditing activity include:

national rules of auditing activity;

internal rules of auditing activity of an audit association;

internal rules of auditing activity of an audit organization, auditor-individual entrepreneur.

National rules of auditing activity – normative legal acts of the Republic of Belarus adopted by the Ministry of Finance of the Republic of Belarus which establish requirements toward the order of performance of auditing activity, and also regulate other issues provided by this Law.

An audit association, audit organization, auditor-individual entrepreneur shall adopt accordingly internal rules of auditing activity of the audit association, audit organization, auditor-individual entrepreneur which establish requirements toward the order of performance of auditing activity, quality control of work of the audit organization, auditor-individual entrepreneur, auditor.

Internal rules of auditing activity of an audit association are binding for audit organizations, auditors-individual entrepreneurs being the members of this audit association.

Internal rules of auditing activity of an audit association shall not contradict national rules of auditing activity.

Internal rules of auditing activity of an audit organization, auditor-individual entrepreneur shall not contradict national rules of auditing activity and internal rules of auditing activity of the audit association the member of which is the audit organization, auditor-individual entrepreneur.

Article 19. Contract of rendering auditing services

Rendering auditing services is carried out on the basis of a contract of rendering auditing services concluded in accordance with the requirements of this Law and other acts of legislation of the Republic of Belarus between an audit organization or auditor-individual entrepreneur and a customer of auditing services.

A contract of rendering auditing services shall be concluded in a written form and include the following conditions:

subject matter of the contract;

time limits for rendering auditing services;

rights and duties of the parties;

cost of auditing services, time limits and order of payment therefor;

liability of the parties for non-fulfilment or undue fulfilment of obligations stipulated by this contract, including the liability of the audit organization or auditor-individual entrepreneur for a punishable failure to fulfil the duty on rendering auditing services ensuring quality thereof, inclusive of the instances of subsequent detection by controlling (supervisory) bodies of violations of financial and economic activity of the audited person which have not been detected in the process of rendering auditing services;

procedure for settlement of disputes;

order of observance of confidentiality;

other and conditions to be agreed upon according to a declaration of one of the parties.

Article 20. Auditor’s report

An auditor’s report according to results of rendering auditing services in the cases provided by the legislation of the Republic of Belarus shall be drawn up in accordance with the requirements of the legislation of the Republic of Belarus. In other cases the requirements toward an auditor's report are determined by the terms and conditions of the contract of rendering auditing services.

The volume of data to be included in an auditor’s report according to results of the audit of annual bookkeeping (financial) statements of banks and annual consolidated bookkeeping (financial) statements about the activity of a bank group, bank holding and also the order of its submission, are determined by the National Bank of the Republic of Belarus.

An auditor’s report is knowingly false if it is drawn up without actual rendering of the auditing service or the auditor’s opinion expressed therein contradicts the results of rendering of such a service. An auditor’s report is recognized as knowingly false only through court.

Article 21. Independence of audit organizations, auditors-individual entrepreneurs, auditors

Pressure in any form on an audit organization, auditor-individual entrepreneur and also on their employees with a view to impede the performance of independent auditing activity is prohibited.

Auditing services may not be rendered by:

auditor-individual entrepreneur in the case when he or his employees are owners of the property (founders, participants) of audited persons, their heads, accountants and other person bearing responsibility for organization and/or maintenance of accounting and/or other bookkeeping, drawing up bookkeeping (financial) statements and/or tax declarations (calculations) of audited persons (including their affiliates, representative offices and other separate divisions);

auditor-individual entrepreneur in the case when he or his employees are married to, close relatives of the owner of the property (founders, participants) of audited persons, their heads, accountants and other person bearing responsibility for organization and/or maintenance of accounting and/or other bookkeeping, drawing up bookkeeping (financial) statements and/or tax declarations (calculations) of audited persons (including their affiliates, representative offices and other separate divisions);

audit organization the heads, auditors and other officials of which are owners of the property (founders, participants) of audited persons, their heads, accountants and other person bearing responsibility for organization and/or maintenance of accounting and/or other bookkeeping, drawing up bookkeeping (financial) statements and/or tax declarations (calculations) of audited persons (including their affiliates, representative offices and other separate divisions);

audit organization the heads, auditors and other officials of which are married to, close relatives of the owner of the property (founders, participants) of audited persons, their heads, accountants and other person bearing responsibility for organization and/or maintenance of accounting and/or other bookkeeping, drawing up bookkeeping (financial) statements and/or tax declarations (calculations) of audited persons (including their affiliates, representative offices and other separate divisions);

audit organization in relation to the audited person (including its affiliates, representative offices and other separate divisions and also subsidiary and dependent economic companies) being the owner of its property (founder, participant);

audit organization in relation to the audited persons (including their affiliates, representative offices and other separate divisions and also subsidiary and dependent economic companies) for which this audit organization is the owner of the property (founder, participant);

audit organization in relation to the audited persons having the same owner of the property (founder, participants) as this audit organization;

audit organization, auditor-individual entrepreneur in relation to audited persons being insurance organization with which this audit organization, auditor-individual entrepreneur have concluded contract of insurance of liability for breaching the contract of rendering auditing services and/or liability for causing harm to the property of other persons as a result of the auditing activity;

audit organization, auditor-individual entrepreneur which rendered services on maintenance, recovery of accounting and/or other bookkeeping, drawing up bookkeeping (financial) and/or other statements for the period of maintenance, recovery of accounting and/or other bookkeeping, drawing up bookkeeping (financial) and/or other statements.

The cost of auditing services and the order of payment therefor are determined by the contract of rendering auditing services and may not depend on the content of conclusions which may be made as a result of rendering auditing services.

Article 22. Ensuring confidentiality in auditing activity

An audit organization, auditor-individual entrepreneur, auditor are not entitled to disseminate information about the activity of an audited person, consumer of auditing services and/or provide such information to third persons, and also documents received or drawn up in the process of rendering auditing services and disclose the data contained in these documents without consent of the audited person, consumer of auditing services or another ground provided by this Law, other legislative acts of the Republic of Belarus or contract of rendering auditing services.

The duty of observing confidentiality remains and after the termination of contractual relations between an audit organization or auditor-individual entrepreneur and an audited person, consumer of auditing services.

Information about the activity of an audited person, consumer of auditing services which an audit organization or auditor-individual entrepreneur have and also documents received or drawn up in the process of rendering auditing services and the data contained in these documents are submitted in the cases and order provided by the legislative acts of the Republic of Belarus to:

to courts (judges) – with respect to cases being in their proceedings;

to court executors – with respect to court resolutions and other execution documents being in their proceedings;

a public prosecutor or his deputy;

bodies of inquiry and preliminary investigation with respect to materials and cases under their consideration;

bodies of the Committee of State Control of the Republic of Belarus;

bodies of state securities of the Republic of Belarus;

tax and customs bodies;

notaries for execution of notarial actions;

the National Bank of the Republic of Belarus;

the Ministry of Finance of the Republic of Belarus.

Persons specified in part three of this Article and which received in accordance with the legislative acts of the Republic of Belarus access to the information about the activity of audited persons, consumers of auditing services and also to documents which are being received or drawn up in the process of rendering auditing services and to the data contained in these documents are obliged to maintain the confidentiality in relation to such data and information.

In case the persons specified in part three of this Article disclose information about the activity of an audited person, consumer of auditing services and also of data contained in the documents being received or drawn up by an audit organization or auditor-individual entrepreneur in the process of rendering auditing services, the audited person, consumer of auditing services, and also the audit organization or auditor-individual entrepreneur are entitled to demand compensation of caused damages (harm) from the guilty person.

In case an audit organization, auditor-individual entrepreneur, auditor disclose information about the activity of an audited person, consumer of auditing services and also data contained in the documents being received or drawn up by the audit organization or auditor-individual entrepreneur in the process of rendering auditing services, the audited person, consumer of auditing services, are entitled to demand compensation of caused damages (harm) from the guilty person.

Article 23. Quality control of work of audit organizations, auditors-individual entrepreneurs, auditors

Principles of performance and demands to organizations of internal and external quality control of work of audit organizations, auditors-individual entrepreneurs, auditors shall be established by the national rules of auditing activity.

Internal quality control of work of auditor shall be carried out by the audit organization, auditor-individual entrepreneur in accordance with internal rules of auditing activity established by them.

External quality control of work of audit organizations, auditors-individual entrepreneurs shall be carried out by an audit association in relation to the members of the association in accordance with the statute of the association and internal rules of auditing activity of the audit association.

chapter 5
attestation for the right to obtain the qualification certificate of the auditor

Article 24. Attestation for the right to obtain the qualification certificate of the auditor

Attestation for the right to obtain the qualification certificate of the auditor – a test of knowledge of natural persons which apply to obtain the quality certificate of the auditor which is held in the form of qualification examinations.

Requirements toward a natural person who apply to obtain the quality certificate of the auditor are:

higher economic and/or juridical education. A natural person who received a corresponding education abroad is accepted for attestation for the right to obtain the qualification certificate of the auditor if there is a reference issued by the Ministry of Education of the Republic of Belarus on recognition of the education document issued in the foreign state and on establishing its equivalence (conformity) to the education document of the Republic of Belarus.

work experience on a position corresponding to the economic and/or juridical education of not less than three years;

absence of non-cleared or non-expunged record of conviction for crimes against interests of the service, property and the order of carrying out economic activity, and also for committing other crimes related to abusing official powers;

absence of facts of being put on record in healthcare organizations in relation to a psychic disorder (illness), dependence syndrome: alcohol-related (alcoholism), related to narcotic drugs or psychotropic substances (narcomania), related to toxicomanic substances (toxicomania).

Persons who did not pass the attestation for the right to obtain the qualification certificate of the auditor are accepted for its repeat passing upon expiry of six months from the day when the Ministry of Finance of the Republic of Belarus made the decision on refusal to issue the qualification certificate of the auditor.

An auditor is obliged, beginning from the year following the year of obtaining the qualification certificate of the auditor, to confirm his qualification at least two times a year.

Article 25. Grounds for annulment of the qualification certificate of the auditor

A decision about annulment of the qualification certificate of the auditor is adopted by the Ministry of Finance of the Republic of Belarus in case of:

application of the auditor with request for annulment of the qualification certificate of the auditor;

establishing the fact of obtaining the qualification certificate of the auditor using false, forged or invalid documents, and also of untrue data;

establishing the fact of rendering auditing services by an auditor being put on record in healthcare organizations in relation to a psychic disorder (illness), dependence syndrome: alcohol-related (alcoholism), related to narcotic drugs or psychotropic substances (narcomania), related to toxicomanic substances (toxicomania) or having a non-cleared or non-expunged record of conviction for crimes against interests of the service, property and the order of carrying out economic activity, and also for committing other crimes related to abusing official powers;

violation of the requirement about confirmation of the qualification established by part four of Article 24 of this Law;

issuance (signing) of a knowingly false auditor’s report;

incompliance with principles of independence and confidentiality;

non-fulfilment of requirements (binding proposals) about elimination of violations established when inspecting the observance by audit organizations, auditors-individual entrepreneurs, auditors of the legislation of the Republic of Belarus on auditing activity (for an auditory-individual entrepreneur or the head of an audit organization);

committing by an auditor of flagrant violations of the order of carrying out auditing activity the list of which is established by the Council of Ministers of the Republic of Belarus.

A natural person the qualification certificate of the auditor of which is annulled (with the exception of the case specified by indent two of part one of this Article) is entitled to appeal the decision on annulment of the qualification certificate of the auditor in court within three months from the day of receipt of such a decision by this person.

A natural person the qualification certificate of the auditor of which is annulled in the cases provided by indent three, six-nine of part one of this Article is entitled to pass the qualification examinations for the right to obtain the qualification certificate of the auditor not earlier than in three years from the day of the decision on annulment of the qualification certificate of the auditor, and in the case provided by indent five of part one of this Article – not earlier than in six months from the decision on annulment of the qualification certificate of the auditor.

CHAPTER 6
Final Provisions

Article 26. Recognizing as ineffective of certain legislative acts of the Republic of Belarus and some provisions of laws of the Republic of Belarus
[translation not provided]

Article 27. Transitional provisions

Requirements of Article 17 of this Law are applied in relation to bookkeeping (financial) statements beginning form the statements for 2013.

Article 28. Measures on implementation of provisions of this Law

The Council of Ministers of the Republic of Belarus and the National Bank of the Republic of Belarus shall, till January 1, 2014:

ensure the bringing of the acts of legislation of the Republic of Belarus in compliance with this Law;

take other measures on implementation of provisions of this Law.

Article 29. Entry into force of this Law

This Law enters into force in the following order:

Articles 1–27 – from January 1, 2014;

Article 28 – after the official publication of this Law.

 

President of the Republic of Belarus

A. Lukashenko

 

* unofficial translation *