Government to channel funds to retain accountants

Finance and Investment Promotion minister, Professor Mthuli Ncube

Finance and Investment Promotion minister, Professor Mthuli Ncube said the Government stands ready to channel the Skills Retention Fund run by the Public Service Commission to retain highly skilled accountants in public entities in a bid to be competitive and promote transparency and accountability.

In an interview on the side-lines of the 2023 Public Sector Convention in Bulawayo last week, Prof Ncube said it is critical for accountants in Government to be professionally abreast with international trends which include sustainability reporting and be able to have a proper Government balance sheet.

He said there is a need to equip accountants in the public sector.

“To address some of the issues being raised by the accountants in the public sector, we have a Skills Retention Fund run by the Public Service Commission, which recognises that kind of rare, unique or scarce skills and we stand ready as Government to apply that to retain our accountants and make sure that we can compete reasonably with the private sector,” said Prof Ncube.

According to the International Federation of Accountants (IFAC), professional accountants make a significant contribution to the economy at the local, national and global levels.

The association says in each measure reviewed, a greater number of accountants correlates to better economic performance.

Prof Ncube added that the public sector accountants’ departments should foster accountability and transparency with a view of growing the economy through bringing investor and public confidence.

In that regard, Prof Ncube said there is a need for public entity accountants to embrace international accounting standards which include the International Accounting Standard Board (IASB), and the International Public  Sector Accounting Standards (IPSAS).

The ISSB standards are designed to provide reliable information to investors.

The standards help companies communicate how they identify and manage the sustainability-related risks and opportunities they face over the short, medium and longer term. They go hand-in-hand with financial statements.

On the other hand, IFRS are a set of accounting standards issued by IASB that are used by companies and organisations to prepare financial statements. The two-day convention was held under the theme:

“Sustainable Economic Growth through Accountable Resource Management,” and was attended by ICAZ executives, representatives from the Pan African

Federation of Accountants (PAFA) and senior officials from the Auditor General’s Office.

Herald

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