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CEAOB guidelines on the auditors’ involvement on financial statements in ESEF

The Committee of European Auditing Oversight Bodies (CEAOB) has issued revised “CEAOB guidelines on the auditors’ involvement on financial statements in European Single Electronic Format (ESEF)”. They replace the initial guidelines issued by the CEAOB in 2019.

The European Single Electronic Format (ESEF) is the new electronic reporting format for annual financial reports published by issuers whose securities are admitted to trading on a regulated market in the European Union for financial years beginning on or after 1 January 2021.

European Commission Interpretative Communication 2020/C379/01 states that EU law requires auditors to provide an opinion on whether the financial statements included in annual financial reports comply with the requirements in the ESEF Delegated Regulation (EU) 2019/815.

The objective of the Guidelines is to describe the CEAOB’s expectations regarding:

  • the procedures to be performed by auditors to assess compliance with the ESEF requirements;

  • the consequences of any misstatements identified by auditors; and

  • the form and content of the audit report regarding whether the financial statements comply with the ESEF requirements.

The Guidelines highlight specifications to be complied with by auditors in addition to the provisions of auditing standards and are available here.