Stock illustration representing China-U.S. conflict. Credit: Slay/

Chinese and U.S. regulators reached an agreement in late August to allow U.S. authorities to vet audits of U.S.–listed companies. The agreement, which was signed by the China Securities Regulatory Commission (CSRC), China's Ministry of Finance, and the U.S. Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB), seemingly resolves a long-running point of contention between the two countries. China and Hong Kong are the only two jurisdictions in the world that forbid PCAOB inspections.

But it's not yet clear whether the deal will deliver on its promise. Observers have serious doubts about whether the new agreement will pave the way for unfettered access to Chinese issuers' documents.

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Jessica Seah

Jessica Seah is International's Asia Editor. She writes about lawyers and legal issues in Hong Kong, China, Singapore and throughout Southeast Asia, Japan and Korea. Her coverage includes the business of law, global and domestic law firms, legal tech, in-house legal departments and regulatory issues. She can be reached at [email protected].