Dear members,

Happy Chinese New Year! Wishing you all a prosperous year filled with blessings, good health and joy. I hope everyone had a pleasant and relaxing break and you are now ready to leap into the Year of the Rabbit.

The Year of the Rabbit truly feels like a new beginning for Hong Kong and the Institute. We have begun seeing major removals of the city’s anti-epidemic measures, including the vaccine pass requirements, social distancing measures, and issuance of isolation orders, as well as the border reopening between Hong Kong and Mainland China. Hopefully this will promise an imminent recovery to our economy.

For the Institute, not only are we settling into our redefined role under last year’s regulatory reform, we are entering our 50th anniversary since our establishment in 1973. This is indeed a major milestone worthy of celebration and a great opportunity for the Institute to share its storied history with the public. With social distancing measures being phased out, we also anticipate a return to physical events, just in time for the festivities.

This is also a new start for A Plus magazine. After publishing our last monthly issue in October 2022, we are finally making a triumphant return under an all new digital-only quarterly schedule. The magazine has shifted fully online as part of the Institute’s commitment to net zero carbon emissions as well as our strategic plan to enhance our communications. With that in mind, it is important that our readers receive the best experience possible. Through our newly refreshed website, we have enhanced a number of functions to make it easier for readers to search for specific topics or bookmark stories for your enjoyment later, among many other quality-of-life improvements.

Of course, there is always room for improvement. A Plus has been the Institute’s official magazine for almost 20 years, and has gone through multiple iterations and revamps to keep with the times. I encourage you to explore the website, and welcome you all to utilize the form at the bottom of the website to let us know your thoughts on the latest refresh.

“I believe that in our redefined role, the Institute is on track to achieving its strategic goals and will play an even bigger role supporting members throughout their professional lives.”

As we enter the Year of the Rabbit and step into our 50th anniversary, I feel very optimistic for the Institute and our members. You can read all about my thoughts on the current state of the Institute and the professions in my interview here. In short, I believe that in our redefined role, the Institute is on track to achieving its strategic goals and will play an even bigger role supporting members throughout their professional lives.

In the interview I also talk about what I consider to be the new era of the accounting profession – “Accounting²”.

One of the important roles the Institute has retained, is as an advocate for a better future for Hong Kong and improvements to the business environment.

Just before the Chinese New Year break, we held a media briefing on our budget submission for 2023-24. Under the theme “Reconnect and Renew,” the submission includes a range of measures under three main headings: 1) Reinforcing Hong Kong’s international status and competitiveness; 2) Making Hong Kong a more liveable city and community measures; and 3) Measures to help achieve carbon neutrality and sustainability goal. You will find a summary of the submission in this issue here and the press release on the Institute’s website. There will also be a budget response after the financial secretary delivers his budget next month, so stay tuned to our communications.

The Institute’s 50th anniversary celebrations will be announced fairly soon. I encourage you to keep an eye on our communications in the coming months, and seize opportunities to participate in the Institute’s events. They will surely be joyous occasions to share with colleagues and friends.

Loretta Fong

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