The Public Company Accounting Oversight Board has reached a tentative agreement to begin observing Chinese regulatory authorities during inspections of auditing firms in China as a kind of “trust-building exercise.”

The PCAOB has been seeking the ability to inspect Chinese auditing firms after accusations arose in recent years of accounting irregularities at a number of Chinese companies that trade on U.S. markets. Chinese regulators have resisted direct inspections by U.S. regulators, but the PCAOB has been in negotiations on resolving the stalemate.

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