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[March 11, 2014]
SAFA for elimination of financial corruption in SAARC countries
(Daily Patriot (Pakistan) Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) Senior professionals from South Asian Federation of Accountants (SAFA) have emphasized on establishing transparency, accountability and corporate governance in trade and industrial sectors in South Asian Association of Regional Cooperation ( SAARC) region.
They made the assertions during 31st Board and Committee meetings of SAFA on March 9 and 10, here hosted by Institute of Chartered Accountants of Pakistan (ICAP).
The participants included senior financial experts from SAARC countries. Various task force committee meetings were held to discuss the objectives of the SAFA’s board and strategies for ensuring its eminence in the world of accountancy.
During a media session on the conclusion of these meetings on Monday, President SAFA, Subodh Kumar Agrawal and President ICAP, Nadeem Akhter Shaikh and President , Institute of Chartered Accountants of India, K. Raghu said that the issues discussed in these meetings included quality control, intensification of strategy to combat corruption in SAARC region , implementation of basel-II report in SAARC countries and harmonizing the evaluation criteria being used by SAFA member bodies for giving BPA awards.
Reinforcing international relations, improvement in transparency, accountability and governance (ITAG), amplification of small and medium practices were also important agenda items, they said.
A purposeful thought was given by the committee members on the reviewing of the existing committee system, education, training and invigorating up the governmental and public sector enterprises accounting, they informed.
President FAFA, Subodh Kumar said SAFA is one of the six apex bodies of SAARC and has been working for promoting accounting cooperation in the region. Individual accountants bodies of each country making SAFA does give pre-budget suggestions to their governments and financial regulatory authorities.
He said SAFA has a large number of students under its umbrella and it was working to equip accountants with advanced professional skills as they are directly or indirectly partners in the nation building process. Every individual accountants institute gives need-based and merit-based scholarships.
SAFA is not restricted to South Asian region but has decided to expand itself to other donor institutions like World Bank besides being a member of the International Federation of Accountants, he said.
He regretted that financial corruption prevailed in all SAARC countries.
He said that in India fiscal deficit ranged between 4.8 and 4.9 percentage. Whereas, he maintained, in Pakistan it is higher.
He said the public financial issues needed to be addressed by the Accountants.
President ICAP, Nadeem Akhter Shaikh said : ” we have to work on increasing tax-GDP ratio and providing relief to the people as well.“ He said the actual problem to be addressed is the non-reporting and under-reporting of financial matters.
He said ICAP, this year, would focus on structural reforms while making its pre-budget recommendations for the government and Federal Board of Revenue (FBR).
ICAP , by end of the current month, will present its pre-budget recommendations. Besides other stakeholders , this time the ICAP will make public its recommendations to media as well, he said.
President , Institute of Chartered Accountants of India, K. Raghu, President, Institute of Chartered Accountants of Bangladesh, Showkat Hossain, President, Institute of Cost and Management Accountants of Bangladesh, Mohammed Salim, Vice President, Institute of Chartered Accountants of India, Manoj Fadnis, Vice President, Institute of Chartered Accountants of Sri Lanka, Lasantha Wickrema Singhe and Vice President, Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nepal, Narendra Bhattarai besides council members and delegates were also present.
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