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Developing accounting and audit in a transition economy: the Romanian experience

Beattie, Aileen and Cristescu, A.M. and King, N. and Weetman, Pauline (2001) Developing accounting and audit in a transition economy: the Romanian experience. European Accounting Review, 10 (1). pp. 149-171. ISSN 0963-8180

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Abstract

The new Romanian accounting and auditing laws took effect in 1999. This paper investigates and evaluates the phase of development which started in 1996, comparing the outcome of that development with the experience of some other transition economies. Recognizing that the move to the market economy was a primary driver of change, the paper considers the economic and social context of Romania and the potential conflicts arising where the growing importance of the global market, political and international developments influence the shaping of strategy in matters of accounting. A strategy shaped in this way must also cater for the specic needs of the many small companies in transition economies. Key to the reform process in Romania has been the recognition that a controlled phasing-in of change, accompanied by training, is necessary to give the reform process a chance to succeed; however, this leads to tensions arising between professional associations, which wish to become selfregulatory, and governments, who need to retain a measure of control to ensure that all elements of the reform are in harmony. The paper concludes that the accounting developments from 1996 avoided some of the pitfalls experienced earlier in other transition economies and also shortened some of the development process by making changes in parallel rather than in sequence.