Adani Ports and Special Economic Zone (APSEZ) announced the appointment of MSKA & Associates Chartered Accountants as its new auditor. The decision comes after Deloitte, the company's previous statutory auditor, resigned from its role.
G. K. Pillai, Chairman of the Audit Committee of APSEZ, stated, "The Audit Committee/Board is pleased to appoint M/s. M S K A & Associates, a member firm of BDO International, a Top 6 global audit firm, as APSEZ's auditor."
Deloitte had been serving as APSEZ's statutory auditor since May 2017, and its tenure was extended for another five years in July 2022. However, a recent meeting between Deloitte, APSEZ management, and the Audit Committee shed light on the auditor's desire for a broader audit role covering other listed Adani portfolio companies. The Audit Committee, composed solely of independent directors, including G. K. Pillai, Prof G. Raghuram, P. S. Jayakumar, and Nirupama Rao, found Deloitte's reasons for resignation insufficient, especially since other Adani portfolio companies operate independently.
Deloitte's unwillingness to continue as APSEZ's statutory auditor led to the mutual decision to terminate the client-auditor relationship between the two parties. It was clarified that the scope of APSEZ and its Board's influence does not extend to recommending group-wide appointments for other listed Adani portfolio companies.
Addressing concerns raised by Deloitte, Gopal Krishna Pillai, Chairman of the Audit Committee, stated, "It is important to mention that, in response to a query by the Audit Committee, Deloitte confirmed that they have received all the APSEZ information from the management of the Company. The same has been confirmed by Deloitte in their resignation letter dated August 12, 2023, to the Company."
The "Other Matters" highlighted in Deloitte's resignation are reportedly adequately disclosed and addressed in APSEZ's FY23 financial statements. The company expresses confidence that these matters will be appropriately resolved in the upcoming September '23 filing.
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