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IPA signs historical partnership agreement with Solomon Islands

The Institute of Public Accountants has signed a historic partnership agreement with the Institute of Solomon Islands Accountants (ISIA) supported by the Australian Aid Program through the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs.

IPA signs historical partnership agreement with Solomon Islands
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The strategic partnership, in collaboration with Monarch Institute, will see the joint delivery of ISIA’s first professional qualification program under its Education Framework launched in 2020.

The Professional Diploma in Accounting is a four-module program aimed at equipping bookkeepers and accounting technicians with relevant knowledge and technical skills aligned to internationally recognised standards. This is consistent with the institute’s overall objective of raising the standards of the local accounting profession in the country.

Andrew Conway, IPA Group chief executive said the co-design of a genuine capacity building education program to support financial transparency provides self-sufficiency to ISIA and the accounting and auditing profession in the Solomon Islands.

“This underpins economic health and goes to the heart of the global accounting professions’ ethos to operate in the public interest. We’re proud to play a role in the development of this model which has garnered interest from other Pacific Island countries,” he said.

Pamela Naesol-Alamu, ISIA’s CEO said the overall intention of the institute is to raise the confidence of the public and other key stakeholders who rely on the services provided by our members.

“As the legal body mandated to develop and regulate the accounting and auditing profession in Solomon Islands, ISIA has a big responsibility to professionally develop our accountants to ensure that they are highly competent and well-equipped with relevant knowledge and skills to enable them to provide high-quality services to their employers and their clients,” she said.

This program will contribute to the development of local accountants, especially those with years of practical work experience in the field but do not have a degree qualification. Successful candidates under this program will be certified by the institute as practising bookkeepers and accounting technicians. ISIA also intends to use this qualification to certify tax agents in the future once the Tax Administration Bill is passed by Parliament.

Monarch Institute CEO, Nick Chapman, agreed that the introduction of ISIA’s professional qualification is important for both the industry and the accounting members based in the Solomon Islands.

The collaborative program is being developed by leading industry professionals and practitioners from Monarch, ISIA and the IPA and will utilise Monarch’s learning platform for delivery.

The four modules offered in this program include Financial Reporting, Budgets and Management Accounting, Financial Performance, Internal Controls and Economics, and Taxation and Law. The Tax and Law module is currently being developed by ISIA and will be contextualised to the Solomon Islands Income Tax Act, as well as other local tax regimes. Students undertaking this program will learn about the tax systems in Solomon Islands and the application of the Income Tax Act.

Consequently, this will be the certifying qualification that the institute intends to use to certify tax agents in the future. This means that any practising accountant intending to be registered as a tax agent will be required to successfully undergo this program. This will ensure that the institute certifies persons who are technically competent and has the appropriate knowledge and skills required to offer bookkeeping and taxation services to the public. It acts as a quality-control mechanism over the services that ISIA members provide to the public.

The ISIA secretariat, under the leadership of the CEO continues to progress the Institute’s Strategic Plan 2021-2025 that ultimately aims at raising standards of the local accounting and auditing profession to meet international standards in the future.

Having internationally recognised standards of accounting and auditing in Solomon Islands will strengthen the local accounting profession that in turn will increase foreign investors’ confidence in the financial reporting system of the country. It will also strengthen public financial management of government resources that is a critical factor for sound economic development of an emerging economy such as Solomon Islands.

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