Accountancy Europe responds to digital reporting portal consultation
Accountancy Europe published its consultation response to the EC’s planned European Single Access Point (ESAP) initiative on 8 March. Its response stresses that SMEs listed on SME Growth Markets should only be subject to voluntary ESAP disclosures.
We also call for a widest range of data that SMEs can voluntarily submit to ESAP, and on an ongoing basis. Finally, ESAP rules for SMEs should be proportionate but the disclosures should nonetheless fulfil the conditions of traceability, i.e. source of the data, immutability, and quality, i.e. accuracy and completeness.
European Financial Reporting Advisory Group (EFRAG) submits final report on EU sustainability reporting standards’ development
On SMEs, the report highlights the need to adopt a proportionate approach tailored to EU SMEs by balancing the specific governance, organisation and resources of SMEs. It also highlights the need for sustainability information produced by SMEs to be relevant for their stakeholders, in particular value chain and financial institutions.
SME United publishes latest SME business climate index report
SME United’s survey, published on 15 March, shows a partial recovery of 5.2% in the SME business climate index up to 59.8% after the negative record of 54.6% registered in autumn 2020. Deconfinement and the temporary return to business-as-usual operations triggered a positive rebound, but the numbers are mitigated by the outbreak of the second wave at the end of 2020.
EUIPO: accountants are the key for SMEs’ IP
The European Union’s Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) participated at Accountancy Europe’s podcast on IP for SMEs. EUIPO was represented by Andrea Di Carlo, Deputy Executive Director, and Inge Buffolo, Director of the Customer Department.
According to EUIPO’s data, accountants are the most trusted advisor for SMEs, and can play a critical role in setting SMEs up for success through their IP’s protection. This also offers new opportunities for the accountancy profession to become holistic business advisors to their clients.
EUIPO emphasises in the podcast that their partnership with Accountancy Europe helps them reach even more SMEs, given Accountancy Europe’s vast membership of professional accountants, covering 50 professional member bodies in 35 countries.
ESMA publishes final report on SME Growth Markets
The European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) published its final report on the functioning of the regime for SME Growth Markets (GM) under MiFID/MiFIR on 7 April. It contains recommendations and possible amendments to the MiFID II framework to the SME GM regime which are needed to improve the regime’s attractiveness.
Among the proposed measures the final report includes recommendations to help promote the concentration of liquidity on SME GMs, and to improve standardisation and access to information for investors. It also includes suggestions on how to develop homogeneous admission requirements.
Accountancy Europe’s survey on audit exemption thresholds in Europe shows increasing number of SMEs exempted from audit
Following the 2013 Accounting Directive, EU companies are no longer required to have a statutory audit. However, the EU legislation allows Member States to impose an audit on their small companies based on their specific circumstances.
Our survey results, published on 9 April, show that 5 European countries lowered their audit exemption thresholds while 4 countries increased them between 2016 and 2021. Overall, there was no clear upward or downward trend in the development of the thresholds in this period.
In the longer-term, however, we noted a clear increase in the thresholds in the majority of European countries. On average, countries’ thresholds for balance sheet and net turnover tripled between 2006 and 2021. We also found diverging national policies and views on auditing smaller entities.
Accountancy Europe’s survey shows main digitalisation opportunities and obstacles for SMEs and SMPs
Accountancy Europe published a survey of 39 of its members and experts active in the field of supporting SMEs for their views on main digitalisation obstacles for small businesses. The survey, published on 8 April, also inquired on the main digitalisation obstacles for small accountancy practices (SMPs), most of whom service SME clients. It also identified opportunities that SMPs – and their SME clients – would get from digitalising their practices.