How would you respond to the argument that current fee rates are a barrier to entry for some firms?

Current fees are driven by the rates paid to our firms, which fully reflect the bid rates specified in their tender responses to our 2017 procurement. It is the bids that drive the fees rather than the fees that drive the bids.

In very simple terms: PSAA collates and reviews all the winning bids, adds PSAA’s very small costs and if the resulting total is lower than the existing level, then prices go down, if the total is higher, then prices go up.

In accordance with the requirements of the Local Audit (Appointing Person) Regulations 2015, PSAA also pays additional fees (fee variations) where auditors are required to do substantially more work than anticipated. For example, this could be due to a change in local circumstances/risks or the Code of Audit Practice, or if the regulator (the FRC) increases the requirement on auditors.