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  • President of the Private Sector Organisation of Jamaica (PSOJ), William Mahfood, is urging accountants to help in improving tax compliance in the island.
  • Mr. Mahfood said the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Jamaica and its members can play a very strong role in this regard.
  • He said through better audit and enforcement measures, more people will be brought into the tax net, including companies, professionals and individuals.

President of the Private Sector Organisation of Jamaica (PSOJ), William Mahfood, is urging accountants to help in improving tax compliance in the island.

Mr. Mahfood, who delivered the main address at a media briefing in Kingston, on February 9, to announce activities planned to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Jamaica (ICAJ), said the institute and its members can play a very strong role in this regard.

“The country was way below its revenue targets up until December, especially in the areas of corporate tax and personal income tax,” Mr. Mahfood noted.

He said through better audit and enforcement measures, more people will be brought into the tax net, including companies, professionals and individuals.

Mr. Mahfood said he has had discussions with the Minister of Finance, Dr. the Hon. Peter Phillips, about lowering tax and duty rates, which will also help to bring more people into the tax net.

The President congratulated the ICAJ on its 50th anniversary and lauded the Institute for upholding integrity and values.

“When I think about the values of the ICAJ, they speak to the tremendous professionalism of your membership; the integrity of the profession and the accountability, something that is sometimes lacking in Jamaica,” Mr. Mahfood said.

Meanwhile, President of the ICAJ, Dennis Chung, informed that the Institute has an ongoing programme which is used to educate high school students on the importance of tax compliance.

“We actually have a programme with the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) in the high schools,” he noted.

He said the ICAJ has produced a number of outstanding members in its 50 years and urged the current 1,200 members to continue to uphold the integrity of the institution.

“We must continue to be at the forefront of integrity and support the development of Jamaica,” Mr. Chung said.

The ICAJ’s golden anniversary is being observed around the theme: ‘Building on our gains…Charting our future’.  The celebrations began with church services last month.  Last weekend the Institute also held its annual workshop on International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) at the Jamaica Conference Centre, which focused on changes to national accounting standards.

Other activities will include an outreach project dubbed Nesta’s rock on February 21, in honour of the late Hon. Robert Nesta Marley. The event will be held at the Phillip Sherlock Centre for the Creative Arts at the University of the West Indies, Mona, and will benefit the Sunbeams Children’s Home and the Elsie Beman Home for Girls.

During the year the ICAJ will also highlight 50 Acts of Kindness carried out by members of the institute over the years and also launch a commemorative 50th anniversary Scholarship. There will also be presentations to service organizations, universities and targeted high schools to promote the profession and encourage students to choose that career.

The Institute will also celebrate, for the first time, Chartered Accountants Week from July 5-11, which will be used to recognize distinguished members in business, benefactors, collaborators and past presidents of the ICAJ.

Additionally, an anniversary business conference is planned for October, and in December the Institute will host its golden Gala Awards under the patronage of Governor General, His Excellency the Most. Hon. Sir Patrick Allen.

The ICAJ was established on January 18, 1965 and formally incorporated under the Public Accountancy Act (1968). The Act regulates the practice of accountancy in Jamaica.

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