Perceptions of Auditor Independence in Libyan Audit Market

  •  Khaled Hamuda    
  •  Nedal Sawan    


This paper attempts to examine the adverse circumstances of auditing, assess the current status and gauge the perceptions of the auditor independence in Libya. It aims to investigate the extent to which audit firms and the Libyan Accountants and Auditors Association (LAAA) play an important role in developing the profession of auditing and enhances auditor independence. The study also indicates a view that, to improve and develop the accounting and auditing profession in general, and to enhance the level of the perception of auditor independence in particular, the LAAA as a professional body should have more power and authority in the Libyan audit market.

Data were collected by two methods, a questionnaire survey (quantitative) and a number of semi-structured interviews (qualitative) to give both triangulation and amplification. The questionnaire was analysed using both conventional comparative statistics and multivariate methods. The sample of respondents comprised three groupings: accounts managers, financial managers and internal auditors working in Libyan public companies; managing partners, partners, audit supervisors and auditors working in audit firms in Libya; and controllers working for the Libyan Association of Auditors and Accountants (LAAA).

The results of the study indicate two groups supported the proposition that the LAAA should adopt international auditing and accounting standards to improve the perception of auditor independence. More important, public companies and audit firms preferred that there should be a law or rule to require public companies to disclose in the financial statements the amount of audit and non-audit services fees paid.

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