SUMMARY REPORT WHICH PROFESSIONAL REGULATION FITS BEST FOR A SUSTAINABLE GROWTH?
FCM, the Mediterranean Federation for the accountancy profession, with members and associates in 15 countries, held its 13th FCM Annual Conference in Rabat, Morocco, on 15th January 2015. The Conference was hosted by the OEC (Ordre des Experts Comptables du Maroc) and sponsored by FCM member ACCA (the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants) and CEGID (First French Editor of Software Management).
FCM annual conference addressed regulation models worldwide and in the Mediterranean region as well as the specific role of the accountancy profession in relation to regulation. Speakers and attendees included the participation of government authorities and officials from Morocco, regional and international regulators, international institutions’ representatives, industry representatives, academics and journalists as well as representatives of FCM Member Bodies, (regulators and academia in Morocco).
The annual conference took a particular look at how the accountancy profession has a major role to play in regional regulation considering that:
- Regulatory regionalism requires the increasing harmonisation of standards and codes;
- New forms of multi-level governance are taking shape:
- Forms in which regulatory governance is increasingly diffused to private actors;
- And where international cooperation is best achieved through expert governance networks.
National capital increasingly operates on a regional or global rather than national scale. Regional – and global – risks must be managed. The importance of a regional governance of such risks is increasingly apparent.
M. Abdellatif Benamour, Président du Conseil de la Concurrence who talked about the competition regulation at national and international level.
Ms Olivia Kirtley, President of IFAC, addressed the increasing complexity of the profession due to the technical changes, regulatory changes especially for SMEs constantly finding new ways for the operating intelligence, new scales but always committed to continue this learning.
Globalisation and coherence is achieved through global policies meaning that international cooperation is needed for consistent regulation, good decision making, comparability, credibility and government accounting.
Ms Kirtley referred to IFAC campaign Accountability Now which promotes awareness, budgeting and makes reporting more comprehensive, reliable and transparent.
She highlighted the importance of trust and credibility – one of the reasons in favour of regulation is to ensure those principles. But also the public interest has to be considered, it is necessary to be vigilant, and use the ethical code in all circumstances. For IFAC, FCM has an important role to play in helping IFAC to share capacity and give incentives to people all over the MED region to be able to rely on the profession.
Mr de Cambourg, Mazars CEO introduced the EU reform and the future of Audit.
First Panel (first part) -“Regulation Models and the Role of the Accountancy Profession -Diversity of models and experiences of professional regulation Worldwide and in the Mediterranean region & (second part) – The role of professional accountants in safeguarding the Public Interest: the Public Interest nature of professional services provided by accountants. The role of PAOs
The first panel of the discussions was chaired by Jelil Bouraoui, OEC Tunisia, focused on “Regulation Models and the Role of the Accountancy Profession”.
Maria Casado, FCM Secretary-General introduced the preliminary results of the survey conducted by the FCM secretariat on capacity building.
Speakers addressed a variety of models and experiences of professional regulation Worldwide and in the Mediterranean region. This first round table looked at the analysis of the role of professional accountants and Professional Accountancy Organisations (PAOs) in safeguarding the Public Interest. The panel discussion took into account the fact that very profession is defined by the knowledge, skills, attitude, and ethics of those in the profession. Regulation of a profession is a specific response to the need for certain standards to be met by the members of that profession. The need for and nature of such regulation is dependent on the specific profession and the market conditions in which it operates. Where a profession such as accounting provides an important public service, it is imperative it serves and acts in the public interest
Gabriella Kusz, Senior expert at World Bank, reported on the strengthening Corporate Financial Reporting (CFR) and the opportunities for Cooperation with FCM. She presented WB strategic goals and how the WB turn Strategic Goals Into Activities by cconnecting voices; Initiative trust funds; Institutional Development Fund (IDF) Grants; Product Development; AA ROSC; Reimbursable Advisory Services and Light Technical Assistance. Ms Kusz highlighted the importance on the ongoing dialogue & reflection on future collaboration by involving the FCM in its activities.
Mr Mamour Fall, FIDEF President, talked about the reasons to regulate the accountancy profession, the modalities, and areas of competency and functioning and shared FIDEF views while providing several countries as examples.
Andrew Leck, ACCA Portfolio Head Western Europe presented the International Accounting Education Standards and how ACCA contributes through its expertise to reach the Compliance Performance Objectives.
Second Panel – Looking at specific Regulation Models – Self-regulation Integrated Regulation- Other types of Regulations
The second part chaired by Mr Philippe Arraou, looked at specific Regulation Models applied in some of the FCM countries and carried out an assessment of their effectiveness, their strength and weaknesses, in helping economic objectives achievement in MED Countries.
The following countries have participated: Albania, France, Morocco, Portugal, Spain, Tunisia and Turkey. We had the privilege of welcoming our special guest Ms Olivia Kirtley who talked on behalf of the US profession regulation model.
The conference finished with an overview given by Ms Mahat Chraibi, IFA president, on the professional Tax Services and professional regulation and concluded with a summary of the discussion presented by Mr Amine Baakili and conclusion remarks of the FCM president Samir Agoumi.
The conference has been an opportunity for all the stakeholders to reconsider the strategic importance of relations between the accounting profession and Public Regulatory Authorities.
FCM was founded in 1999 to represent the accountancy profession in the Mediterranean area. Its membership includes 22 professional institutes from 15 Mediterranean countries, representing more than 320.000 professional accountants and auditors.
The mission of FCM is to promote co-operation among the professional accountancy bodies in the Mediterranean region, both in the private and in the public sector, to share knowledge and provide technical assistance to members to help them achieve and maintain high professional and quality assurance standards. The accountancy Profession of the Mediterranean Region is committed to speak a common financial reporting language, to ensure quality through effective oversight systems and harmonized regulation to play a major role in the protection of Public Interest and to bring about Public Value at all levels of the financial reporting infrastructure.
FCM is an Acknowledged Grouping of the International Federation of Accountants (IFAC), which is the global standard setter for auditing as well as for education, training and the ethical code for the accountancy profession.
FCM is committed to promoting economic growth and integration in the Mediterranean region through reliable, transparent and comparable financial information and a developed accountancy profession.