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ICAEW pledges to help rebuild Iraq accountancy profession

Author: ICAEW Insights

Published: 17 Mar 2021

ICAEW has partnered with the Iraq Union of Accountants and Auditors to help rebuild the country’s accountancy profession in an agreement that will “strengthen the relationship between the two countries”.

ICAEW President David Matthews and Mr Jawad Al-Shehele, President of the Iraq Union of Accountants and Auditors (IUAA), co-signed an agreement to strengthen the accountancy profession in Iraq and build foundations to support the country’s economic growth on Monday 15 March 2021.

The IUAA was established in Baghdad in 1969 and is recognised under Iraqi law as Iraq’s sole national accountancy body. ICAEW’s International Capacity Building (ICB) team will work with IUAA to prepare a three-year strategic plan, which reviews its strengths and weaknesses to boost priority areas and increase growth.

His Excellency Mohammad Jaafar Al-Sadr, Iraq Ambassador to the UK, said: “We welcome the signing of the cooperation agreement between the Iraqi Union of Accountants and Auditors and ICAEW. We greatly encourage this type of professional cooperation that has a positive impact on the relations between the two countries, and we look forward to this cooperation extending to other areas.”

He added: “We reaffirm the embassy’s continuous support for all cooperative work on the basis of mutual interest to strengthen the relationship between the two countries.” 

Skilled financial professionals are needed

ICAEW and IUAA will also work together to develop professional education for accountants in Iraq. The ICB team will advise IUAA on achieving its strategic goals, review its current certified public accountant syllabus and develop a roadmap and action plan for reform.

A worldwide drop in oil prices and the COVID-19 pandemic have placed unprecedented strain on Iraq’s economy. Skilled financial professionals are needed to guide the recovery, and IUAA’s qualification - updated with the assistance of ICAEW - aims to enhance these skills and enable the Iraqi government to achieve the objectives set out in its White Paper for Economic Reform.

“A vital part of every strong economy”

IUAA approached ICAEW because of the UK body’s experience developing accountancy qualifications and its commitment to the benefits of a strong international accountancy profession.

“A skilled accountancy profession is a vital part of every strong economy and we are pleased to use our experience developing qualifications to ensure our colleagues in Iraq receive the highest quality of training”, said David Matthews, ICAEW President.

ICAEW has completed similar projects in 30 countries across Asia, Middle East and Africa, helping national accountancy bodies and professional accountants serve the needs of their economies and societies. 

Matthews continued: “We are proud to work in the public interest to improve financial information and transparency, and we look forward to working with the Iraq Union of Accountants and Auditors.”

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