Australia’s biggest pension fund freezes new business with PwC over tax scandal

Australia’s largest superannuation fund has stated it is not going to signal any new contracts with PwC because the consulting agency grapples with the fallout from a tax scandal in considered one of its largest markets.

AustralianSuper, which has virtually 3mn members and A$290bn ($191bn) of belongings below administration, stated on Friday that it might freeze any new work with the Huge 4 agency and assessment an audit contract later this yr.

“AustralianSuper is worried with the continuing revelations round PwC and in consequence has frozen any new contracts with PwC,” stated a spokesperson for the fund. AustralianSuper had expressed these considerations “on the highest stage” to PwC final week, he added.

PwC has been below intense public scrutiny over the previous month after the discharge of emails displaying it had used confidential details about modifications to tax legal guidelines from the federal government to win new enterprise.

It suspended 9 companions this week pending the result of an investigation in September because it moved to ease the impression of a scandal that has engulfed its Australian and worldwide operations.

An growing variety of firms in Australia, considered one of PwC’s largest markets, are reviewing their relationship with the guide following the confidentiality breach.

AustralianSuper is the most recent organisation to place restrictions on PwC following the scandal. The Reserve Financial institution of Australia stated on Wednesday it might not give new enterprise to the agency pending the result of the assessment. Treasury officers have additionally stated the moral behaviour of consultants would now should be taken into consideration when procuring new contracts.

AustralianSuper, which is partly owned by the Australian Council of Commerce Unions, stated it spent greater than A$2mn with PwC final yr.

PwC’s administration will seem in entrance of the senate in Canberra subsequent week to reply questions over the scandal. The agency is anticipated to come back below extra stress to launch the names of the companions concerned in the usage of the confidential data and any shoppers that benefited from the tax recommendation.

The federal government, which has referred the matter to the police to contemplate prison motion, has stated the onus is on PwC to persuade it that the corporate’s inside assessment and the resignation of any companions concerned within the scandal are ample redress for it to renew working with the general public sector.

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