Professional bodies should ensure corporate transparency:Minister

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New Delhi, Nov 16 (UNI) Union Corporate Affairs Minister Prem Chand Gupta today said while the government is taking all possible steps to handle the global financial crisis, professional bodies too have a role to play in ensuring corporate transparency.

At a time when globally economies were passing through turbulent times with the collapse of financial institutions and stock markets, the role of a CA had become even more important in this scenario, the Minister said.

"While the government is taking all possible steps, the ICAI too has a role to play by ensuring transparency and playing an active role by not letting anyone to betray the trust of shareholders," he said in his address at the first convocation of the newly-enrolled Chartered Accountants of Northern Region, adding that the Indian CAs' importance was bound to increase not just in India but also the world.

About 2,000 Chartered Accountants were conferred the certificate of membership to the professional body at the convocation organised by the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI).

The Minister deviated from his written speech to underline the dangers of over-valuation of shares which were selling at highly inflated rates of their actual value as there were no set guidelines.

"CAs should conduct a survey and suggest what needs to be done to prevent such-like incidents in the future," he told the young CAs.

On the proposed valuations Bill, Mr Gupta said valuations was important as many of the problems had originated due to its absebce and there was no mechanism in the country to regulate valuations.

Once the law was in place, he said it would open up opportunities for the CAs.

Noting that the institute was striving hard to fill the ever-growing demand for chartered accountants, the Minister also urged accounting bodies to come up with a solution to the need felt for accounting professionals by small and medium enterprises such as mid-level accounting professionals, thereby providing jobs to millions of boys and girls.

As part of the Institute's efforts, a new scheme of examinations had been submitted to the government which allowed aspirants to become a accounting technician after passing merely four papers, he said to applause from the gathering.

ICAI President Ved Jain announced that work was progressing for entering into an agreement into with the the chartered accountants' body representing England and Wales allowing their members to work in their respective countries.

He also said free-of-cost computer training was being imparted so that by December 31, 2008 all members would become computer-savvy.


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