Indonesia Chartered Accountants play an important role in the future of the nation's economy. The expectations are with them to minimize the economic risks resulting from economic inefficiencies caused by the lack of transparency and accountability.
A profession exists to solve problems where they have unique knowledge or expertise.” The statement was made by the President of the International Federation of Accountants (IFAC), Mrs. Olivia Kirtley at the IAI International Seminar "The Relevance of Professional Accountants in a Hyper Connected World," held in Jakarta, recently. Also in attendance, the Vice Minister of Finance of the Republic of Indonesia, Prof. Mardiasmo, as well as a number of key speakers from Indonesia and abroad.
Mrs. Kirtley believes the accountancy profession will remain relevant and meet the needs and expectations of clients and organizations if accountants are power potential, stay a step ahead, draw strength from diversity, and do the right thing.
The accountancy profession must continuously find ways to strategically deploy technology to power potential—its mobility, speed, and personalization—to leverage and advance the cornerstones of our profession: expertise, education and ethics. Accountants and firms that master the opportunities and insights afforded by technology will thrive.
According to the McKinsey Global Institute, Indonesia is the 16th largest economy in the world. They estimate that by 2030, Indonesia will be the world’s 7th largest economy, will have over 135 million consumers, and will need 113 million skilled people to service economy.
Prof. Mardiasmo who is also the Chairman of the Institute of Indonesia Chartered Accountants (IAI) said, the advancement of the life of a globalized world that is still overshadowed by hunger, poverty, unbalanced growth and the phenomenon of social conflict, requires accountants to increasingly play a role in building the interconnectivity of the world economy, to be more accountable to the spirit of professionalism, transparency, honesty. With professional competence and great vision of a better world, professional accountants can become leaders of change in the global arena.
Accountants can promote a better accountability in the management of economic resources. The profession ensures quality information as the basis for government decision-making to overcome the economic problems. In addition, the contribution of the profession is also increasingly important for the development of global capital markets, effective public financial management, and improvement of public services to increase nations’ prosperity.
On her remark, Mrs. Kirtley said, one of the important aspects that affect the global growth is the implementation of good governance in various sectors. Olivia encouraged leaders to include strong governance into the DNA of every organization. She believed that the Indonesian economy will bounce back in 2016. To take the Indonesian economy to a new level, a strong governance culture will be required. For that, the accounting profession will play an important role because this profession has long been an active advocate for good governance in various sectors.
There are three main factors that are needed to build stronger governance, namely the role of the executives and the board in reforming corporate governance, the seriousness of the helm of the organization, as well as the role of professional accountants.
Mrs. Kirtley strongly emphasized, a professional accountant with unique qualifications will greatly assist in this process. The role that can be done include advocacy, where accounting professionals can initiate the implementation of governance in organizations and in industry. Further evaluation by considering doing governance review and identify opportunities to grow. Equally important is to actively participate in the implementation of governance in various sectors.
In this case, the important role of professional organizations is to find relevance. In Indonesia, IAI as the organization of professional accountants in Indonesia has the vision to become a professional organization leading the development of knowledge and practice of accounting, business management and public, which is oriented to ethics and social responsibility, and environment in national and international perspective.
IAI has the obligation to increase the role of the accounting profession in the economy, as well as to improve the quality and professionalism of accountants. This is a requirement for accountants to have the appropriate skills and knowledge in the business world that is increasingly connected today.
Mrs. Kirtley’s visit to Jakarta was in conjunction with the 58th Anniversary Celebration of the IAI. As the first female President of IFAC, she delivered a keynote speech on the conference theme, witnessed by more than 1,000 professional accountants from all over Indonesia. She also shared her experience to more than 600 accounting students from a number of prominent universities in Indonesia.
As part of her visit, Mrs. Kirtley conducted a courtesy visit to The Audit Board of the Republic of Indonesia (BPK) to discuss a number of issues with members of the BPK and relevant stakeholders. Furthermore, she also delivered a keynote speech in the Risk and Governance Summit 2015 organized by the Indonesia Financial Services Authority (OJK).
Mrs. Kirtley reiterated the importance of understanding and leveraging connections in ways that help grow and develop the accountancy profession. While learning from the global accountancy profession, Indonesia is also expected to give contribution toward the global development of the profession. She praised the efforts of IAI in leveraging the nation’s development of the Chartered Accountant (CA) in Indonesia.