New Institute President and Council announced
(From left) Patrick Law, Immediate Past President; Nelson Lam, Vice-President; Johnson Kong, President; Loretta Fong, Vice-President; and Margaret Chan, Chief Executive and Registrar
The Institute elected Johnson Kong as President for 2020, following the 47th annual general meeting on 12 December. Nelson Lam, Chairman of Nelson CPA Limited, and Loretta Fong, Partner in PwC’s Entrepreneurial Group of the Assurance Division in Hong Kong, were elected as Vice-Presidents.
Kong, who is Managing Director – Non Assurance of BDO Hong Kong, has been actively involved in the development of the accounting profession through his leadership and participation in a wide range of Institute committees. He has served on the Institute’s Council since 2015 and was vice-president in 2018 and 2019. He is also Chairman of the Greater Bay Area Committee, Professional Conduct Committee, Small and Medium Practices Committee and Ethics Committee, as well as member of the Nomination Committee and the Education Standards Committee.
Seven members were elected at the Council election to serve for a term of two years: William Cheung, Choy Kai Sing, Fung Ling Yip, Lee Suk Yee, Leung Man Chun, Roy Leung and Li Kin Hang. Existing elected members who will hold office for one more year until their two-year term ends are Kong, Lam, Fong, Au Chun Hing, Au Ki Lun, Raymond Cheng and Jennifer Cheung.
Wilfred Wong and Dr. Au King Lun were appointed by the government as lay members of the Council for two years from December 2019 to November 2021. They join the two continuing government-appointed lay members, Susie Ho and Theresa Ng, who will fulfil the second year of their terms. Meanwhile, Ada Chung, the representative of the Financial Secretary, and Charlix Wong, Director of Accounting Services, remain as the ex-officio members serving on the Council.
The Immediate Past President Patrick Law will hold office as a member of the Council until December 2020.
Best Corporate Governance Awards 2019
The Best Corporate Governance Awards 2019 presentation ceremony was held on 5 December, featuring the Secretary for Financial Services and the Treasury, James Lau Jr., as the guest of honour.
This year, there were 26 awardees, a record high and three more than last year. This included eight first-time winners and, among these, were the first winner of a Self-nomination Award, the first company in the Non-Hang Seng Index (Small Market Capitalization) Category to win a Sustainability and Social Responsibility Reporting Award, and the first-ever government department to gain recognition in the awards.
“To preserve Hong Kong’s reputation as a leading international finance centre in the highly competitive global environment, it is vital to uphold a strong corporate governance regime. The Institute remains as committed as ever to promoting and supporting good corporate governance and sustainability practices in the city, making sure that Hong Kong stays firmly aligned with evolving global best practices. This will help retain investor and public confidence in the Hong Kong capital market in the future,” said Patrick Law, the Institute President and Chairman of the Judging Panel.
The Judges’ Report contains commentaries on the winners’ corporate governance practices, general observations by the judges, references to recent local and international corporate governance developments, as well as other background information.
While many improvements have been made, the judges urged corporations to continue to strengthen the transparency, accountability and diversity of their governing boards, heeding the changes to the Corporate Governance Code and related Listing Rules effective earlier this year.
The full list of winners of the awards is now available on the Institute’s website. Look out for a feature article in A Plus next month interviewing some awards winners.
Annual report published
The Institute’s 2019 annual report, Nurturing success – The Qualification Programme turns 20, detailing the activities of the Institute over the financial year is available now. The report includes a timeline of the Qualification Programme (QP) and photo essays illustrating how graduates of the QP nurture the success of their clients and employers, and add value across a wide range of sectors. An interactive version and the PDF versions can be found on the Institute’s website.
On 2 December, nearly 500 members and guests came together to enjoy our annual dinner themed “Together We Shine.” The Hon. Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor, Chief Executive of the Hong Kong government, was guest of honour.
Become an insolvency specialist
The Specialist Designation in Insolvency is open to members with considerable experience and competencies in insolvency practice, and who have gained the SQ (Insolvency). The current round of applications closes on 31 January. Members can find out more about this specialism by reading the profile article.
The abridged minutes from the October and November Council meetings are now available for members to read. They can be found in the “members’ area” of the Institute’s website.
Ng Tsz Wing, CPA (practising)
Complaint: Failure or neglect to observe, maintain or otherwise apply the fundamental principle of Professional Competence and Due Care in the Code of Ethics for Professional Accountants, Hong Kong Standard on Quality Control 1 Quality Control for Firms that Perform Audits and Reviews of Financial Statements, and Other Assurance and Related Services Engagements, Hong Kong Standard on Auditing (HKSA) 200 Overall Objectives of the Independent Auditor and the Conduct of an Audit in Accordance with Hong Kong Standards on Auditing, HKSA 500 Audit Evidence and HKSA 700 Forming an Opinion and Reporting on Financial Statements, and being guilty of professional misconduct.
Ng is the sole shareholder of Ken T.W. Ng CPA Limited. He was responsible for the practice’s quality control system and quality of assurance engagements. The practice was subject to its first practice review in May 2017. The practice reviewer identified a number of significant deficiencies in the practice’s system of quality control. Ng was also found to have failed to maintain professional knowledge and skill at the required level, and to comply with professional standards, in a number of audit and assurance engagements examined by the practice reviewer.
Decisions and reasons: The Disciplinary Committee ordered the cancellation of the practising certificate of Ng from 4 December 2019 with no issuance of a practising certificate to him for four months. In addition, Ng was ordered to pay the costs of disciplinary proceedings of HK$55,477. When making its decision, the committee took into account the particulars of the breaches committed in this case, the respondent’s conduct throughout the proceedings and his personal circumstances.
Details of the disciplinary finding are available at the Institute’s website.