President of the Fiji Institute of Chartered Accountants, Mr. Tarlochan Singh,
Members of the Fiji Institute of Chartered Accountants,
Distinguished Guests and Delegates,
Ladies and Gentlemen,
A very good morning to you all.
It is an honor for me to officiate at the opening of the Fiji Institute of Chartered Accountants (FICA) first Technical Workshop for 2023.
As a long-serving member of the FICA, I have fond memories of the achievements we have made over the years, and my rewarding 28-years of membership, serving on a number of sub-committees for the Institute.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
As one of the oldest professional body in Fiji, the Institute celebrated its 50 years of existence in June last year. Over the years, the Institute has gone through active changes in its Council, Sub-Committees and Secretariat composition together with its membership requirements.
A key milestone achievement was the enactment of the revised FICA Act and Regulations which is now being enacted and came into force in June last year.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
With the new Act, regulations and provisions for new categories will positively bring about more accountability and credibility into the Accounting Profession. For example, a new category Certificate of Limited Public Practice would certainly allow small and medium enterprises access to reasonable and affordable accounting services which will bring business more accountability.
As the Minister responsible for MSMEs, I strongly believe that the Accounting Profession and Institutes play a pivotal role in raising awareness on the importance of financial literacy amongst grassroots communities and MSMEs.
And, I must congratulate the Institute for being one of the key drivers in the Government Concessional Loans assistance which was provided in 2020 and 2021 where the members were engaged as financial assessors to assess loan applications from MSMEs.
As of today, the Institute is represented on the Board of Business Assistance Fiji (BAF) and continues to provide assessment services through few of its registered Certified Public Practitioners. Thank you for providing leadership, guidance and most importantly building trust in the accounting and finance fraternity in Fiji and the region.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
Today’s Technical Workshop is a platform that continues to encourage education, professional development and the maintenance of high accounting, auditing and ethical standards for its members and the Accounting Profession. As professionals in the discipline, it is incumbent upon FICA to remain relevant for the Accounting Profession to develop and operate in a real-time environment.
I therefore encourage the participants present here today, to use this platform to network, share ideas and learn best business practices for both professional and personal growth. I hope that by the end of this workshop each one of you is able to take back valuable lessons to contribute to the growth of the various organisations you represent.
In closing, I thank the President of the Institute, members and non-members for turning out in numbers and wish everyone a rewarding time and declare the Technical Workshop open.
Vinaka Vakalevu and Thank you.