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Saudi central bank to appoint KPMG partner as deputy governor for supervision

Saudi central bank to appoint KPMG partner as deputy governor for supervision

KPMG Saudi Arabia’s managing partner Tareq al-Sadhan is leaving the company at the end of December

The Saudi Arabian Monetary Agency (SAMA) is set to appoint KPMG Saudi Arabia’s managing partner Tareq al-Sadhan as its new deputy governor for supervision, two sources told Reuters on Thursday.

Sadhan was leaving KPMG at the end of December after 18 years with the firm as he’d been “selected by the government to lead a significant role”, according to a Sept. 3-dated internal memo seen by Reuters.

While the memo didn’t disclose the role he was leaving for, the two sources said the role he was taking up was that of deputy governor for supervision.

A person at SAMA, the kingdom’s central bank, said “there is no news coming from SAMA” without elaborating. KPMG said it had no comment at this time.

According to SAMA’s website, Abdulaziz Abdulrahman al-Helaissi is the current holder of that title, having been appointed on May 2, 2013.

With Sadhan’s appointment, there are now two senior SAMA members with an auditing background out of the seven management roles, with Vice Governor Abdulaziz Saleh al-Furaih having an extensive accounting background.

The appointment of Sadhan emphasised the importance which the Saudi authorities were now placing on accountancy as a key plank of regulation, said one of the sources.

Accounting standards have been in focus in the kingdom since Saudi’s No.2 telecoms firm Mobily first announced in November that it would need to restate some of its results statements due to errors in booking revenue from wholesale broadband leases and mobile promotional campaigns.

Further restatements were necessary, with 27 months of earnings ultimately affected and combined profit for the period slashed by more than half to SAR 3.07bn ($818.8m).

The KPMG memo stated that Sadhan’s responsibilities at the firm would be assumed by Chairman Abdullah al-Fozan while the board discussed the future structure of the company, whose official title is KPMG Al Fozan & Al Sadhan.

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