The number of COVID-19 cases has seen a steady decline over the past month, permitting the government to promptly adjust anti-epidemic policies. The newly enforced “0+3” arrangement for inbound visitors has been sorely welcomed by the community and shows great promise of what is to come.
Without compromising defences against the pandemic and the health of our fellow citizens, I look forward to further relaxations that will allow for a larger sense of normality and revitalization. As an international city, it is vital that we provide every opportunity for activities to resume and re-establish business connections between Hong Kong and the wider community.
To commemorate the 73rd National Day of the People’s Republic of China this year, the Institute, together with the Association of Hong Kong Accounting Advisors, Hong Kong Association of Registered Public Interest Entity Auditors Limited, Hong Kong Business Accountants Association, and The Society of Chinese Accountants and Auditors, co-hosted a celebration event on 23 September. The event is an important annual gathering for the accounting profession in Hong Kong. We were honoured to have Paul Chan FCPA, Financial Secretary and Institute Past President, alongside Li Xuhong, Deputy Director-General, Department of Administration and Finance of Liaison Office of the Central People’s Government in the Hong Kong SAR, and Wang Qi, Director-General of the Department of International Organizations and Conferences of the Office of the Commissioner of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the People’s Republic of China in the Hong Kong SAR, attending as guests of honour.
While the celebration was held in the format of a ceremony, without food and beverage provided due to the pandemic, it provided an opportunity for the profession in Hong Kong to come together to foster a much closer alliance, and to promote unity and create solidarity.
The month of September also marked two important events that exemplify the Institute’s commitment to nurturing the next generation of talents for the profession.
Earlier in the month, we held the Institute’s Young Members Virtual Conference 2022, titled “Decrypting the future of the profession – Finding success in a sustainability-driven future and the new digital economy.” As the name suggests, the event included insights on trending industry topics such as sustainability, and environmental, social and governance, the metaverse, non-fungible tokens and more. The webinar also included discussions on essential issues for young members, such as the types of skill sets young members should possess to become future-ready CPAs, tips on career planning, as well as how to excel at interviews.
On 24 September, the Institute also held the 22nd presentation ceremony for the top students from the December 2021 and June 2022 sessions of the Qualification Programme (QP) as well as scholarship recipients. We were honoured to have Joseph H. L. Chan, Under Secretary for Financial Services and the Treasury, as guest of honour to present awards to the outstanding students for the fifth consecutive year.
The ceremony was especially significant as the December 2021 session marked the completion of the roll out for the new QP, and signifies the Institute’s important role of ensuring our next generation of accountants are equipped with the relevant skills for a changing business landscape. I am excited to see our young awardees and scholarship recipients build on their success and continue to excel as they progress in their careers.
As we edge towards greater normalcy, I look forward to meeting our colleagues, young and old, on a more frequent basis, and hopefully, soon we will be able to hold major events over shared meals and without face masks.
Loretta Fong CPA (practising)