§ Mr. Austin Mitchell
To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what powers he has under which he can launch an independent investigation of the auditing standards of individual companies.
§ Mr. Redwood
I have no power to investigate the standard of work performed by a company's auditors, although the matter may arise in the course of an investigation into the affairs of the company. However, under the Companies Act 1989, which will provide a new supervisory system for company auditors, a recognised supervisory body must have effective arrangements for the investigation of complaints against persons eligible under its rules to be appointed as company auditors, including complaints referred to it by my Department.