December 2019

  • Digitalisation Awards 2019: Recognising our Members’ technology initiatives
  • Council and Commission statement on stablecoins
  • The EC conducts its third annual review of the ‘Privacy Shield’
  • G20 give green light to OECD’s proposal to tax digital giants
  • G7 report highlights the need to address regulatory risks of stablecoins

Digitalisation Awards 2019Recognising our Members’ technology initiatives 

Technology strongly impacts professional accountants and the bodies that represent them. Our members are embracing these opportunities. This year we celebrated their most promising initiatives with our Digitalisation Awards 2019.

Our members’ award nominations underline their positive outlook as resulted from our Members’ Technology Barometer in 2017 and 2018. Sharing these best practices can inspire other bodies to innovate in supporting their members in their digital transition.

We are delighted to feature the 17 digitalisation initiatives from our members, divided in two categories:

Member Services – going digital to better serve their members (professional accountants)

SME tools – practical digital support for accountants to better serve SMEs

The awards winners were announced at our Digital Day 2019 – What Does Innovation Cost? on 19 November. Find more about each project in the brochure.

Council and Commission statement on stablecoins

The Council of the EU and the European Commission have prepared a joint draft statement on the potential dangers of stablecoins. The text refers to the work of the G7 report on this topic pointing out challenges and risks stablecoins may pose to consumer protection, privacy, taxation, cybersecurity and operational resilience, money laundering, terrorism financing, market integrity, governance and legal certainty.

The declaration reiterates G7 conclusion that no global cryptocurrency could operate in the EU until legal, regulatory and prudential challenges and risks have been identified and adequately addressed.

The statement is submitted to the Council (ECOFIN) for approval at its meeting on 5 December. Read more

The EC conducts its third annual review of the ‘Privacy Shield’

On 23 October, the European Commission presented the results of the third review of the ‘Privacy Shield’. The report confirms that the US continues to ensure an “adequate level of protection” for personal data transferred from the EU to US companies participating in the data protection framework (currently around 5,000 companies).

While the Commission welcomes progress, it also recommends some further improvements such as strengthening the (re)certification process for companies who want to participate by shortening the time of the (re)certification process; expanding compliance checks, including concerning false claims of participation in the framework; and developing additional guidance for companies related to human resources data. Read more

Member States call for more clarity in review of GDPR Regulation

The EU Council is preparing its position on the review of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). Member States had an opportunity to share feedback on their experiences with the application of the Regulation. 19 countries submitted written comments requesting more clarity on a range of matters.

The adoption of the final version of the EU Council’s report is expected by the end of the year. The European Commission report on the evaluation and review of the Regulation is expected by 25 May 2020.

MEPs select Wojciech Wiewiórowski as new European Data Protection Supervisor

On November 26, the European Data Protection Supervisor’s office (“EDPS”) and the European Parliament announced that Wojciech Wiewiórowski will be the new European Data Protection Supervisor for a 5-year mandate.

The EDPS is the EU independent data protection authority. Its mission is to supervise how EU institutions and bodies process the personal data of individuals, advise them on all matters relating to the processing of personal data, monitor new technology that may affect the protection of personal information. Read more

G20 gives green light to OECD’s proposal to tax digital giants

G20 Finance Ministers on 18 October gave green light to the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) proposal for a unified approach to the taxation of digital giants.

The proposal targets tech companies, but the tax would also apply to multinationals operating in other sectors. Businesses within the scope would pay taxes to countries where they sell products independent where physically operate. The aim is to agree on international rules by the end of 2020.

Accountancy Europe responded to OECD’ s public consultation on the Secretariat Proposal for a “Unified Approach” under Pillar One. Read more

G7 report highlights the need to address regulatory risks of stablecoins

In October, G7 adopted a report Investigating the impact of global stablecoins. The report says that stablecoins present significant risks to the global financial system. They pose legal, regulatory and supervisory challenges and risks related to, inter alia, money laundering, terrorist financing, market integrity, cyber security, data protection, tax compliance.

On Friday, G20 finance ministers agreed that strict regulations on cryptocurrencies should be set and that no stablecoin project should be launched until public policy and regulatory risks are addressed.

The Financial Action Task Force (FATF) has echoed these concerns. Large scale adoption of virtual assets and person-to-person transfers with no regulated intermediary “could have serious consequences for our ability to detect and prevent money laundering and terrorist financing.”

Google or accountant? Food for thought

An article posted on the NBA platform – Accountant – juxtaposes value accountants bring as trusted advisors and the similar value proposition that Google tries to win. Read more

The internet of things and accounting: lessons from China

The ICAEW report considers the implications of the increasing tendency to embed sensors in everyday objects and connect them to the internet.

By hugely increasing their access to data, the internet of things (IoT) can help organisations make smarter decisions and better manage people and assets. But, more than this, it can make possible wholly new strategies and business models. The report helps finance professionals understand the opportunities and risks the IoT creates. It also considers the skills accountants will need if they are to actively participate in the IoT’s development.

Providing Leadership in a Digital World

This thought leadership initiative looks at how the accountancy profession is changing as a result of digital technologies, and explores what the profession needs to do to stay relevant in the future.

Big data and analytics: the impact on the accountancy profession

This updated thought leadership initiative outlines the opportunities and risks for accountants from new and advanced capabilities in data, and highlights practical examples of how the profession is changing as a result of big data and analytics.

Accountancy Europe Members share with us your latest technology-related initiative by contacting IrynaThis curated content was brought to you by Iryna de Smedt, Accountancy Europe policy advisor since 2009. You can send her tips by email and connect with her on LinkedIn.