Ethics and trust the pillars of accountancy: Fiame

The Deputy Prime Minister, Fiame Naomi Mataafa, has praised the role of accountancy in upholding transparency and accountability at an international gathering of accounting professionals dedicated to deepening professional ties with Samoa and the broader region. 

Speaking to accountancy professionals from around the region on Friday for the Professional Accountancy Organisation Development Committee (P.A.O.D.C.) she said the professional values accountants uphold reflect the changing needs of the region. 

"What stands out is the focus on ethics and trust, the fundamental principles that we all endeavour to uphold irrespective of profession, leadership and individual," Fiame said. 

The event was hosted by the Samoa Institute of Accountants (S.I.A.). Topics covered at the international forum include the pillars of ethics and trust, diversity and the challenges of the digital age. 

"In Samoa, the Government continues to advocate for accountability and transparency. Similarly, the accountancy profession acting in the best interest of the public also advocates for good governance and accountability through financial reporting," said Fiame.  

"The discussions of today reaffirms the commitment of the accountancy profession to its stakeholders and the economic stability of the people they serve. The commitment takes us back to the fundamental principles of ethics and trust.  

"The profession that embraces the challenges and changes required to enhance accountability and transparency through continuous professional development, digital innovation, good governance and future aspirations of people, business, community and country."

She said that trust remained the cornerstone of accountancy even in the digital age. 

"Governments, businesses, communities, people need professionals who are competent, innovative, visionary and change makers. But without ethics and trust, these will not be achieved," Fiame said.

The Deputy Prime Minister urged the participants to make good use of the professional development opportunity to make positive contribution to their respective organisations and support Samoa’s efforts for sustainable economic and social development and commended the S.I.A. for hosting the forum and Confederation of Asia Pacific Accountants meetings in Samoa.

The President of the Samoa Institute of Accountants, Ms Susana Laulu, said four professional accountancy organisations from Fiji, Papua New Guinea and Solomon Islands would work together with Samoa on issues such as mutual recognition of qualifications across borders and capacity building. 

“The overarching objective is to foster collaboration towards the collective growth and development aspirations of the Pacific professional accountancy organisations in their journey," she said. "Strong Pacific accountancy Organisations will provide relevant and adequate support to its professional members to deliver high quality service to our clients and stakeholders. 

"This in turn supports sustainable Pacific economies," said Susana.

Members from the Asian Development Bank, the World Bank and organisations in the Confederation of Asia Pacific Accountants are also in Samoa this week to discuss these key issues, the S.I.A. President said. 

“All of the topics selected will culminate the main focus of the day - What are the real challenges facing the accountancy profession today? And how do we ensure a future-ready resilient profession in Samoa and the Asia-Pacific region?,” she said. 

The S.I.A. was established in 1959.

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