Historically, as a former British colony, Malta has had its accounting and auditing practices highly influenced by UK regulation. However, in the last decade, departures have steadily been occurring from a UK‐based regulatory framework to one increasingly influenced both by international standards and European Union requirements. One such departure relates to the retention of the statutory audit requirement for all Maltese companies, despite its earlier abolishment for small companies in the UK. This study evaluates the relevance of a mandatory annual statutory audit requirement for owner‐managed companies as perceived by two interest groups: the owner‐manager and the auditor. It also considers possible alternatives to such a requirement. Results indicate that for Maltese owner‐managed companies, the statutory audit fulfils two important roles: it bears relevance to outside third parties, and it has a positive effect on the owner‐manager and staff.
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