UAE, India ink MoU to train ‘accounting technicians’

DUBAI — Institute of Chartered Accountants of India, or ICAI, has signed an agreement with the Abu Dhabi-based Centre of Excellence, Research and Training, or CERT, to launch a course to train mid-rank accountants in the UAE.

ICAI and CERT, the commercial arm of the Higher Colleges of Technology, or HCT, signed a memorandum of understanding on January 4 to start the one-year “Accounting Technician” diploma course mainly to cater to Emirati students.

ICAI will develop the course curriculum for the diploma, the first batch of which is expected to commence in July. “This will be tailor-made to suit the local laws and regulations,” Amarjit Chopra, president of India’s accounting regulator, said.

Chopra said ICAI’s Dubai chapter, with 1,5000 members, is its largest overseas chapter. “Dubai is the hub of the region’s capital market, and for ICAI the emirate is the gateway to the Middle East,” Chopra, who was in Dubai recently, said.

In the Gulf, Indian chartered accountants play major role in public and private sectors, he pointed out.  Chopra lauded the growing partnership 
between India and UAE in various spheres.  In Dubai, ICAI is conducting International Financial Reporting Standards,  or IFRS, certification course for its members at its Knowledge Village training office.  He said his institute would soon commence Business Valuation certification course for its members. “At a later date, both these certification courses will be open for all professionals who wish to pursue the same,” Chopra said. 
 Despite the global downturn, Asian giants China and India are on a vibrant growth trajectory. In India, banking, auto and cement industries are recording faster growth rates. Overall growth exceeds nine per cent.

On the impact of Direct Tax cod, Chopra observed that  it was growing concern for every NRI in the Middle East, especially due to its 60-day stay clause. “We are appealing to the Standing Committee to review the same to have least impact on the NRI,” he said.

Chopra said India’s banking sector, which withstood the ravages of  the global financial meltdown, has been admired worldwide for its sound banking principles based of prudent norms.  He said even political parties are following disclosure norms on donations received. “This results in greater transparency amongst political parties and help reduce corruption and black money,” he said.

Chopra said ICAI is entrusted with the task of developing accounting format for political parties by Election Commission of India.
 The institute will be submitting a final report in this regard to the Election Commission soon, he said.

He believes rotation of auditors among political parties will further improve transparency.
 ICAI has already recommended rotation of auditors for political parties to the Election Commission, he said.

“Corporate funding to political parties should be treated as expenditure in order to increase transparency in financial statements and curb black money flow,” he said. Companies Bill should incorporate this provision, he added.  He suggested certain minimal percentage of total turnover of a company could be allowed as an expense for the purpose of providing funds to political parties..
 “Judicial and labour reforms are also critical for country’s growth. India is certainly marching ahead in this direction,” Chopra added

Chopra argued that IFRS, which are principle based, once implemented across the world would bring uniformity in presentation of financial statements.

The institute had launched a nationwide campaign to spread awareness on the convergence of Indian accounting standards with IFRS, Chopra said.

As a preliminary step, IFRS certificate and IFRS elearning system had already been started and so far over 2000 students have cleared the course.

Chopra said that ICAI was also planning to introduce unique code to its members in order to monitor fraudulent practices and forged attestations – khaleejtimes