Professional Accountants, Strong Governance Vital to Reducing Corruption

Chartered Professional Accountants of Canada (CPA Canada) welcomes the findings of a new global study that shows professional accountants are playing a significant and vital role in fighting corruption.

Toronto, April 18, 2017 – Chartered Professional Accountants of Canada (CPA Canada) welcomes the findings of a new global study that shows professional accountants are playing a significant and vital role in fighting corruption.

The study, The Accountancy Profession—Playing a Positive Role in Tackling Corruption, released by the International Federation of Accountants (IFAC), reinforces the crucial role worldwide that accountants play in confronting corruption. Others, such as business leaders, governments and the financial sector, also must be actively involved according to the study.

“Corruption eats away at economies. Stopping it requires cross-sector collaboration and good governance across governments and organizations in all sectors,” explains Joy Thomas, president and CEO, CPA Canada.

Fayez Choudhury, IFAC Chief Executive Officer, adds: “The accountancy profession is a crucial part of strong national governance architectures that confront corruption, in partnership with good government and strong businesses. And vitally, the study shows professional ethics, education, and oversight - at the core of the global accountancy profession - are key to the profession’s positive impact in tackling corruption.”

The study notes there is a strong link between the percentage of professional accountants in the workforce, and more favorable scores on the main global measures of corruption. It also found that the profession’s impact was significantly greater in G-20 countries.

“Integrity plays a key role in helping to combat corruption and assists in cultivating long-term sustainable growth,” adds Thomas. “CPA Canada believes that integrity plays into the Canadian ideal of good business which involves focusing on both business and social development to create a stronger economy.”

The IFAC study notes that the profession’s skills make accountants critically important in the fight against corruption. To be a Canadian chartered professional accountant involves comprehensive educational requirements and a commitment to continuous learning.

“With all the skills developed and knowledge gained comes a strong understanding of what it means to be a professional accountant and to act ethically, something that is essential in the battle against corruption,” stresses Thomas.