ICAI president and vice president met Shri P. Kumaran, the high commissioner of India to the Singapore region to discuss opportunities for chartered accountants in ASEAN countries. There was a meeting with Ms Kuldip Gill and Mr Evan Law. He is the assistant chief executive of ACRA. The Singapore chapter of ICAI organises events to widen the opportunities. ICAI president also met Mr Teo Ser Luck, the president of ISCA. This meeting is regarding the ISCA associate membership. ICAI invited Singapore authorities to the global professional accountant convention. The celebration is on November 2023 in India. The blog highlights the opportunities and changes in the job profile of ASEAN and Singapore.
ICAI Singapore chapter:
The Southeast Asian nations are the Philippines, Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand, Brunei, Burma, Timor-Leste, Cambodia, Laos, Philippines, and Vietnam. These mentioned countries have diversity in religion and history. The aim of forming ASEAN countries is to promote economic growth, cultural development and social progress. In 2009, China became ASEAN’s trading partner. Singapore is a country with an attraction to banking and financial services, maritime shipping, and aviation and specialised services. The chapter aid in the professional and personal development of the members in Singapore. Singapore chapter plays a crucial role for Indian chartered accountants. The members are engaged with professional content, knowledge series events, and webinars. ICAI Singapore works as a global and regional headquarters.
Opportunities for chartered accountants in Singapore:
Singapore stands as a financial station for the Asia-Pacific region. Indian chartered accountants get recognition as a relevant qualification in Singapore. However, it is mandatory to get registered with the Institute of Singapore of chartered accountants. The professionals wanting to practice in Singapore should get the practising certificate from ISCA. The following points explain the life of a chartered accountant in Singapore:
- To pursue a chartered accountancy profession in Singapore, the member should have a job experience of three years. The job experience should be relevant to the auditing job.
- The professional should pass the ISCA assessment examination.
- The professional should satisfy the fit and appropriate criteria of ISCA.
- An Indian chartered accountant should complete the ISCA ethics and professionalism course to practice in Singapore.
- The eligibility criteria for an Indian CA to practice in Singapore is liable to change as per the time demands. So, the professional should check the website of ISCA for the details.
- The subjects in India and Singapore CA are different. In India, the subjects are accounting, auditing, taxation, business law and financial management. In Singapore, the subjects are assurance, audit, reporting, business strategy management and tax.
- In India, the chartered accountancy course has a three-year structure. The CA course in India happens two times per year. In Singapore, the CA course is for three years, and the examination happens for one time a year.
- Indian CA came into existence from the year 1949. Singapore CA came into existence from the year 2013.
- In Singapore, professionals with specialised knowledge of financial management, taxation, and auditing are paid more salaries. The average salary of an Indian CA in Singapore goes from SGD 60,000 to 120,000.
- Chartered accountants placed in international firms get more salaries than professionals working in local firms. Indian chartered accountants with competitive skills such as communication, interpersonal, and technical skills get competitive pay.
Opportunities for chartered accountants in ASEAN countries:
The GDP growth doubled from 2007 to 2017 in ASEAN countries. ASEAN countries receive large amounts of foreign direct investments. In Intra, ASEAN trade amounts to 20.9 per cent of the total world trade. In 2017 there was a rise of USD 543 billion. The corporate governance in ASEAN countries is set to benefit the capital markets. The policymakers, market participants, regulators, and stakeholders decide the corporate governance that improves capital market performance.
Industry 4.0 and ASEAN economic community is a threat to job opportunities in ASEAN countries. Big data and cloud accounting data are bringing change to the Indonesian accountant. ASEAN countries formed ASEAN economic community to remove barriers to economic development. The community came into existence from the year 2015. Artificial intelligence and machine learning are taking over manual work. Industry 4.0 states that it is a linkage between digitalisation and production. The digitalisation of all industries is the key element in Industry 4.0.
In Malaysia, the company act 2016 lays the rule of auditing public and private firms as mandatory. Irrespective of the ownership and size it should be audited if the company is operating in the country. In Singapore, ACRA is enhancing the auditor’s independence and professional sceptic. The country is making use of the Audit quality indicator framework more. The ASEAN Federation of Accountants strengthens the global network. AFA organised a conference in 2023 to discuss the CLMV-focused implementation of IFRS accounting standards. The conference was graced by more than 500 participants from ASEAN countries.
ASEAN countries improve the standards of around six hundred million people. The neighbouring states are benefitting from the development of the country. ASEAN countries are the centre of attention for foreign investments. Singapore and ASEAN countries contribute to the global education network. The Indian chartered accountants have recognition and learning option in these countries.