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State Board Report

December 2014

While AICPA Past Chair Olivia Kirtley was welcomed as the new president of the International Federation of Accountants, she was not the best known speaker at the 19th World Congress of Accountants (WCOA), held November 10-13 in Rome, Italy. Pope Francis received the participants of the WCOA at an audience in the Vatican. He called on the accountants “to make choices that foster the social and economic well-being of the whole of humanity, offering everyone the opportunity to realize his own development.” Pope Francis urged the accountants “to act always responsibly…addressing with courage especially the problems of the weakest and the poorest.”

The WCOA’s plenary sessions covered: businesses thriving in disruptive times; enhancing government transparency and accountability; and integrated thinking. President Kirtley told the World Congress: “The groundswell for integrated reporting and integrated thinking is rising quickly.” At the closing session organized by the CGMA, Ms. Kirtley told the accountants that finance is increasingly taking the driver’s seat in businesses worldwide.

The WCOA reported attendance at the event by continent: 1,592 from Africa, 789 from Asia, 1187 from Europe, 343 from America, and 45 from Oceania. The largest number of representatives from any single country was 1,145 from Nigeria. The United States had 120 in attendance. Professionals from more than 100 countries participated. The 19th World Congress was hosted by the Italian Institute of Accountants and IFAC.

In 2018, the 20th WCOA will be held in Sydney, Australia, with the support of the Certified Practicing Accountants of Australia, the Institute of Chartered Accountants Australia, Business Events Sydney and the New South Wales government.

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