We are proactive in monitoring developments in core focus areas such as financial reporting, auditing and assurance, and ethics. Leveraging the knowhow of our technical committees and through interactions with members via platforms such as focus group discussions and public consultations, we provide value-adding feedback to standard-setters to shape the development of standards and policies.
We have submitted comment letters to facilitate dialogue in the areas of financial reporting, ethics, and auditing and assurance, engaging with global independent standard-setters like the International Ethics Standards Board for Accountants (IESBA), IAASB and International Accounting Standards Board.
We continue to work at raising our profile in the global arena by speaking at international events. This deepens our engagement with our international counterparts and solidifies our standing as a credible, forward-looking body. Our efforts are being recognised. In November, on the invitation of the UNCTAD-ISAR, ISCA President Gerard Ee, the elected Vice-Chair-cum-Rapporteur, presented a paper at UNCTAD-ISAR’s 32nd Session on Guidance on Good Practices in the Area of Compliance, Monitoring & Enforcement (CM&E) in Geneva, Switzerland, sharing Singapore’s experience and practices in CM&E. In the same month, we also participated in Chartered Accountants Worldwide’s Critical Success Factors Summit in Singapore.
Enjoying good relations with IFAC, we have hosted or co-organised several notable IFAC events over the years including the 2015 IFAC Council and Board Meeting, the largest and most important annual IFAC event. This reflects the trust and confidence which IFAC has in ISCA.
Regionally, we play an active role in AFA to advance the role and promote the value of the profession in light of the launch of AEC. For instance, we mooted the establishment of the AFA Accounting Standards Group (AASG), which was successfully set up in early 2015 with the approval of the AFA Council. We were elected Chair of the AASG.
AASG will look into various accounting issues that are relevant to the region, including the development of the ASEAN micro accounting model. It will also study and provide ASEAN’s views and perspectives on global accounting issues. This is important to help shape the formulation of international standards and policies that are appropriate for a large segment of businesses in developing economies like ASEAN, thus further promoting AEC as an important economic group.
On September 30, the 10 ASEAN members instituted the ASEAN Chartered Professional Accountant Coordinating Committee (ACPACC) to operationalise the MRA on Accountancy Services. The ACPACC is an intergovernment initiative and Singapore, which was represented by ISCA, was elected Chair of ACPACC. As Chair, we were responsible for ensuring the successful implementation of the MRA and promoting the acceptance of the ASEAN Chartered Professional Accountant across ASEAN.
We produced opinion pieces and commentaries on business and accountancy issues. These ranged from corporate governance and practice management to funding and payment trends, digital technologies, security and risk governance, ethics, tax and sustainability. Our commentaries were frequently published in Singapore’s leading business media as well as regional publications.
We continued our collaboration with ACRA on the Financial Reporting Surveillance Programme. The Programme, which is into its second cycle, is aimed at strengthening the financial reporting system through the review of financial statements. It provides constructive feedback to directors in areas where the presentation or contents of their financial statements fall short of compliance with the requirements of the accounting standards. Improving the quality and reliability of financial statements will strengthen the financial reporting supply chain and better safeguard public interest.