Social mobility and the public sector | 6. ACCA’s capacity-building work

Social mobility and the public sector | 6. ACCA’s capacity-building work

6. ACCA’s capacity-building work

The role of ACCA in supporting the development of the global profession is a fundamental part of the organisation’s purpose.

As less-developed economies grow, urbanise and change at an increasingly rapid pace, their need for professional accountancy skills that can serve society is clear and well understood. It is also evolving. From facilitating trade and enhancing the investment climate, to promoting ethical practices, transparency and adherence to international standards, professional accountancy is a core part of the development and growth of healthy socio-economic ecosystems.

Beyond the traditional pressures affecting developing countries, the latter also face rising social, economic and environmental threats from issues that include overly rapid urbanisation, climate change, water scarcity and extreme weather. These will reduce both public and private sector effectiveness and add to an already challenging context.

Tackling these issues effectively demands an unprecedented level of collaboration. Professional accountants are a core part of this collaborative ecosystem of actors taking on these challenges, as they work to support effective public services, business growth and a transition to high-value and sustainable development – while at all times working to protect the public interest. From digital tax collection enhanced by mobile technologies that help countries develop their tax base and build their ability to fund much-needed public services, to engaging with practices such as integrated reporting (<IR>) that help in accounting for social and environmental capital, professional accountants can play their role in supporting development that is equitable, sustainable and ready for the future.

That is why ACCA supports a broad range of capacity-building activity, working in partnership on over 50 projects around the world, over the last 30 years. These projects cover numerous areas to help establish and strengthen the accountancy profession; for example, helping to build national accountancy bodies, improving the take-up of international standards and setting out frameworks for regulating the profession. ACCA is committed to developing the global profession, fulfilling our vision to be number one in developing the accountancy profession the world needs, especially in places that most need it, through capacity-building projects and partnerships. The examples below highlight three capacity-building projects that ACCA is leading to help develop the global profession.

6.1 Rwanda

Established in 2008, the Institute of Certified Public Accountants of Rwanda (iCPAR) has a growing number of professional accountants supporting an expanding economy. Donors and international bodies have played an important role in the organisation’s early accomplishments, with significant growth achieved over the last five years and strong expectations for continued success.

ACCA is a longstanding partner of iCPAR and, since 2016, has collaborated under the IFAC capacity-building programme with funding provided by the UK government. Through this project, and under the long-term partnership agreement, ACCA has worked with iCPAR to develop a robust strategy, with the right people in place. The partners have also collaborated to strengthen the Rwanda certified accounting technician qualification and iCPAR’s continuing professional development programme. The project is supporting iCPAR to improve its capacity and accelerate its progress towards becoming a sustainable professional accounting organisation.

6.2 Afghanistan

ACCA has partnered with Certified Professional Accountants Afghanistan (CPA Afghanistan) to strengthen the latter’s role as the national professional accountancy organisation in Afghanistan, and to establish the accountancy profession. This collaboration is extensive and includes working to develop the ‘pipeline’ of professional accountants, supporting research to advance the accountancy and finance profession in Afghanistan, and developing and delivering the CPA Afghanistan strategy to work towards IFAC membership.

CPA Afghanistan and ACCA have an innovative partnership that is fast-tracking the establishment of the accountancy profession in Afghanistan – including the establishment of robust regulatory and governance frameworks for the profession.

This partnership supports CPA Afghanistan in building its capacity internally and establishing and enhancing the products and services provided to stakeholders. CPA Afghanistan has already achieved much, including access to quality tuition in Afghanistan, sharing knowledge and resources, and collaborating on joint events that provide opportunities for professional accountants to maintain their knowledge and skills. CPA Afghanistan has harnessed partnerships globally to achieve results quickly – and the work with ACCA is central to this outcome.

6.3 Vietnam

ACCA has worked with the Ministry of Finance in Vietnam to advise on strengthening its capacity to regulate the profession. This work produced recommendations to strengthen the system of regulation in Vietnam through a proposed new regulatory model. When implemented, these reforms will provide Vietnam with an audit regulator that can undertake full regulatory activities, as well as taking and enforcing decisions without influence by those regulated. At the heart of the recommendations is the establishment of the Accounting and Auditing Supervision Board as the new independent statutory regulator, whose primary function is to regulate the auditing and accountancy profession in Vietnam.