Mario Christodoulou, Accountancy Age, Thursday 20 May 2010 at 15:34:00

Auditors claim "we have come full circle"

Auditors had mixed reactions to the resurrection of the Operating and Financial Review (OFR), announced by the coalition government today.

In their five year program, the coalition announced it would ?reinstate an Operating and Financial Review to ensure that directors? social and environmental duties have to be covered in company reporting?.

Tim Copnell, associate partner at Big Four firm KPMG, said he feels the business community has ?come full circle on this, and effectively stayed in the same place?..

?The OFR was replaced with the Business Review by the previous government ? but the two are virtually identical in terms of content,? he said.

?Any extra reporting requirements at a time when businesses are focusing on the recovery are unlikely to be popular.?

Doug Johnston, director in the climate change and sustainability services team, at Ernst & Young, welcomed the news and said the move would promote greater understanding of environmental, social and governance issues.

?There is significant room for improvement in the way that companies articulate how their operations are impacted both positively and negatively by these factors ? key to stakeholders' gaining a broader understanding of the business issues and risks,? he said.

?In a more uncertain world, the OFR should introduce welcome transparency into the impact of critical non-financial issues on businesses.?

Further reading:

Senior auditors renew calls for liability reform