In Focus: The Future of the Accountancy Profession
The Malta Institute of Accountants (MIA) has announced details of its biennial conference, which is being held on 25 November at the Corinthia Hotel, St George’s Bay. The conference theme is Disruptive Innovation: Adapting for your Tomorrow and focuses on the multifaceted challenges faced by the accountancy profession in ever-evolving, and often unstable, socio and economic realities.
Many wonder where the accounting profession will be in a few years’ time and discussions during the conference will centre on a range of thought-provoking themes, such as how accountancy is evolving, how are the qualities and the ideal set of skills of a successful accounts professional defined and how this industry remains relevant in the digital age.
The MIA is a non-profit organisation and the largest professional association in Malta, representing some 3,000 accountants and over 800 accountancy students and registering some 10 per cent growth in membership each year.
This year’s biennial conference is particularly interesting because it brings together a pool of multi-disciplinary professionals – from accountants and finance specialists, to business owners, psychologists, ICT specialists and academics – who together will debate the future accountancy faces, away from the stereotypical ‘number crunching’ image with which typically (and erroneously) the industry is associated.
The conference will welcome a host of expert local and foreign speakers from entities such as ACCA, ICAEW, FEE, 6pm Group, PwC, Farsons Group and Deloitte, as well as from universities both in Malta and the UK. Topics on the agenda include inter alia Drivers for Change and Competencies Required, Expanding Expectations: Intelligence, Creativity, Digital Technologies and Emotional Intelligence. It will also include sessions on how to apply new skills to the many facets of the Maltese economy.
Leading international speakers will include Olivier BoutellisTaft, CEO of the Federation of European Accountants (FEE), Dr Martin Manuzi, EU Regional Director for the Institute of Chartered Accountants of England and Wales (ICAEW) and Anthony Walters, Head of Policy for Europe at the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA), which is the world’s leading body for professional accountants.
The local keynote speakers include Finance Minister Prof. Edward Scicluna, Shadow Economy Minister Claudio Grech and MIA President Franco Azzopardi.
“Accountants are expected to make professional judgements and, in so doing, to exhibit the highest standards of integrity,” says Mr Azzopardi. “More than ever before, in order to remain relevant, accountants need to master new skills, particularly when it comes to ICT, digital and social media. The accountants of tomorrow will need a dynamic combination of honesty, independence, technical acumen and soft skills to succeed in a constantly growing market.”
This year’s event is not to be missed, not only by accountants themselves but also by business owners, CEOs (of both public and private entities), academics, and students considering a career in the exciting industry of accountancy and finance.
MIA President, Franco Azzopardi