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Banks must pull up their socks, says ICAI's Amarjit Chopra
March, 11th 2010

The newly elected President of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India, Amarjit Chopra said he is expecting amendments to the Companies Act and feels the banking sector needs to pull up its socks.

"The banking sector will have to work more. They will have to take a call, particularly the Reserve Bank, as to what extent they want to continue with prudential norms. Banks may have to change software. The problem is that it will take six months before they have to implement International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS)," Chopra said in an exclusive interview.

He is awaiting amendments to the Companies Act for IFRS convergence. "The IFRS rollout should be in phases for corporates to be prepared." However, he was quick to add that insurance companies are well prepared. ICAI, he added, is studying the impact of IFRS on telecom, power, oil & gas sectors and feels the exemptions from IFRS convergence should be absolutely minimal.

ICAI, he said, is likely to come out with a guidance note on accounting standards for the oil sector soo. "We need higher disclosures in related-party transactions."

According to him, it is important to improve the perception on ICAI's disciplinary mechanism. He said CA registrations grew 8-9% in 2009 with 10,000-13,000 members added annually.

Speaking on ICAI's investigation into the Satyam scandal, Chopra says it will wind up investigations by June. "The ICAI council would meet next week on the second Satyam draft report." He does not see any impact of the Securities Exchange Board of India's rejection of Price WaterHouse consent application on ICAI.

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