State Board Report

August 2011

From August 15-September 30, the Comptables Agréés du Québec (the provincial society of the Canadian Institute of Chartered Accountants (CICA)) is holding information sessions throughout the province to familiarize its members with the details of a proposal for the unification of the accounting profession in Quebec. This is being done at the invitation of the Quebec’s Office des Professions. While all of the Canadian Chartered Accountants and Certified Management Accountants are contemplating unification (see sbr 6/11), CGA-Canada is also being considered in Quebec’s unification discussions. If the members approve the merger, Quebec would be the first province to implement the change as early as April 2012, CICA leaders have said. Approximately 20 percent of Canada’s accountants are in Quebec.

Asked why merging the organizations is being considered, the Canadian groups explain: “We have come to believe that a united profession would be more efficient and effective than the status quo; more relevant, both at home and abroad; better able to enhance the support and services it provides to all members, candidates and registered students; and better able to protect and serve the public interest.”

At first, the existing CA, CMA, CGA designations would be combined with the new “CPA,” Chartered Professional Accountant. Then after a transition period, estimated at about 10 years, just CPA would be used. When asked why “Chartered Professional Accountant” is being used instead of “Certified Public Accountant,” the institutes responded: “Today the CPA and CA are the most recognized designations around the world. Using the word ‘Chartered’ within the CPA would allow the new designation to be aligned with both of these designations. Finally, the use of ‘Chartered Professional’ would serve to distinguish the Canadian CPA from the CPA in the United States.”

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