Auditing firm KPMG Bulgaria will be fined 100 000 leva, or about 51 100 euro, but will not lose its licence for giving clean bills of health to the Corporate Commercial Bank (CCB), Bulgaria’s fourth-largest lender that was put under special supervision of the central bank last year and later had its banking licence stripped, reports in Bulgarian media said on January 9.
KPMG Bulgaria will be fined the maximum amount possible, 20 000 leva, for each year between 2009 and 2013, when it carried out audits of CCB, the reports quoted Vanya Doneva, head of the Commission for Public Oversight of Statutory Auditors, as saying. The individual auditors who worked on CCB’s reports will be fined the same amount, Doneva said.
Doneva was quoted as saying that a vote to suspend KPMG Bulgaria’s licence did not get the necessary qualified majority, with three commissioners in favour, one short of the number stipulated by law. KPMG Bulgaria can appeal the fines within seven days of the regulator formally issuing the ruling.
In December 2014, the regulator completed its review of KPMG Bulgaria’s audits on CCB, concluding that the firm’s reports had “significant gaps and inconsistencies”. KPMG Bulgaria rejected the accusations, saying that its audits were carried out in line with international auditing standards.
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(For full coverage of the CCB situation from The Sofia Globe, click here. Logo and corporate motto of Corporate Commercial Bank – “our clients are dear to us” – from a CCB advert. Screengrab from corpbank.bg)