ICPAS ( the Institute of Certified Public Accountants of Singapore) and ICAEW (Institute e of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales) today (24 January 2011) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to increase awareness of the role of Non-Executive Directors and improve their skills.
The MoU was signed by ICPAS Head of Member Services Mr Evan Law and ICAEW Director of Member Services Sharron Gunn FCA on the sidelines of the International Innovation Network Conference, hosted by ICPAS at the City Campus of ICPAS’ training arm SAA Global Education on Monday 24 January 2011.
ICPAS and ICAEW will work together to increase transparency and enhance corporate governance. The partnership will include the development of a bespoke training programme for Non-Executive Directors in Singapore. The training aims to equip existing and aspiring Non-Executive Directors with the latest international best practices and regulatory requirements specific to Singapore.
Dr Ernest Kan, ICPAS President, said: “ICPAS is committed to promoting good corporate governance, which is crucial to the stability of our financial markets and Singapore’s reputation as a leading global financial centre. By offering the programme for aspiring and existing Non-Executive Directors, ICPAS and ICAEW are addressing a vital market need”.
Mr Mark Billington FCA, Regional Director, ICAEW South East Asia, said: “Corporate governance will be a keyword for Singapore in 2011, following the global financial crisis and in light of the work now being undertaken by the Singapore Corporate Governance Council. Non-Executive Directors have an important role to play in contributing to Singapore’s success as a global financial market. Having the right skills is critical to fulfil that task. We are pleased to expand on our already successful working relationship with ICPAS to include specific initiatives aimed at qualified accountants working in business”.
ICPAS Head of Member Services, Mr Evan Law, said: “Many of our members are in commerce, making their stride in various industries. By offering this programme, we aim to help our members widen their skills sets and equip them with the technical resources to help them succeed. The programme tackles corporate governance from international and local perspectives, a value proposition that is extremely relevant in today’s globalised business world”.
Mr Dominic Nixon ACA, Chair of ICAEW’s Singapore City Group, said: “Around half of ICAEW’s global membership works in business. Ensuring they are supported at every stage in their career is an important part of ICAEW’s role. The agreement with ICPAS will contribute to that”.
ICPAS and ICAEW will adapt the programme material for the local market, with ICPAS administering the programme. The programme provides key learning points from international developments and global best practices, as well as the regulatory requirements in the local context. It will be highly interactive, with scenario-based discussions. It will have two tiers. Tier One is for aspiring Non-Executive Directors, giving an overview of the roles and responsibilities of directorship. Tier Two is for existing Non-Executive Directors, detailing local regulations, governance, strategy, board procedures and functions of the board’s various committees. Mr Chris Pierce, an international governance expert who has conducted corporate governance training for the World Bank, will be one of the programme’s trainers.
ICPAS and ICAEW will also look for opportunities to promote practices that lead to greater transparency, disclosure as well as increased corporate governance, and possibly conduct research on these areas.