(1) An issuer must appoint a suitable auditing firm to meet its audit obligations, having regard to the adequacy of the resources and experience of the auditing firm and the audit partner-in-charge assigned to the audit, the firm's other audit engagements, the size and complexity of the listed group being audited, and the number and experience of supervisory and professional staff assigned to the particular audit. A mineral, oil and gas company must appoint an auditing firm where the auditing firm and audit partner-in-charge have the relevant industry experience.
(2) The auditing firm appointed by the issuer must be:
(a) Approved under the Accountants Act. The audit partner-in-charge assigned to the audit must be a public accountant under the Accountants Act;
(b) Approved by, registered with and/or regulated by an independent audit oversight body acceptable to the Exchange. Such oversight bodies should be members of the International Forum of Independent Audit Regulators, independent of the accounting profession and directly responsible for the system of recurring inspection of accounting firms or are able to exercise oversight of inspections undertaken by professional bodies. Where applicable, the audit partner-in-charge assigned to the audit should be approved by, registered with or regulated by a relevant audit oversight body acceptable to the Exchange; or
(c) Any other auditing firm acceptable by the Exchange.
(2A) An issuer that appoints an auditing firm that meets the requirements in Rule 712(2)(b) must also appoint an additional auditing firm that meets the requirements in Rule 712(2)(a) to jointly audit its financial statements.
(3) A change in auditing firm or the proposed appointment of an additional auditing firm to meet requirements in Rule 712(2A) must be specifically approved by shareholders in a general meeting. The notice of meeting must incorporate, where applicable:
(a) confirmation from the outgoing auditors as to whether they are aware of any professional reasons why the new auditors should not accept appointment as auditors of the issuer, and if so, to provide reasons;
(b) confirmation from the issuer as to whether there were disagreements with the outgoing auditors on accounting treatments within the last 12 months, and if so, to provide details;
(c) confirmation from the issuer as to whether it is aware of any circumstances connected with the change of auditors that should be brought to the attention of the shareholders of the issuer;
(d) specific reasons for the change of auditors, including whether the outgoing auditors resigned, declined to stand for election, were dismissed or directed by the Exchange to be replaced under Rule 305(1)(eb);
(e) confirmation from the issuer that it complies with Rule 712 and Rule 715 or 716 in relation to the appointment of the new auditing firm; and
(f) explanation that the appointment of an additional auditing firm is to meet the Exchange’s requirements in Rule 712(2A).