This article was first published in the September 2016 China edition of Accounting and Business magazine.

In late June, ACCA announced our strategic alliance with Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand (CA ANZ). I’m really excited by this bold development, as it will offer real value to our respective members.

It’s through inclusive partnerships that ACCA is able to extend the range of services and recognition available to members. Our alliance with CA ANZ will respect the strong heritage and values of both organisations while bringing value to our combined body of members and students across the world – 788,000 in total – and the alliance marks the initial step in a valuable long-term relationship.

Our announcement came when many around the world were trying to comprehend the next steps for the UK and the European Union, where a referendum vote narrowly decided the UK’s departure from the EU. A sense of alienation blamed on globalisation was identified as one of the possible reasons for the Brexit vote. 

Globalisation is a force that cannot be denied. In our research Professional accountants – the future, many respondents saw this as one of the main drivers of change. It requires local and international knowledge of emerging trends in business, technology and society; corporate governance and risk management frameworks; diverse cultures and business practices; and of course an understanding of multiple languages. Globalisation is about seeing the bigger picture and understanding where you fit in.

Our alliance with CA ANZ is all about seeing this bigger picture. It adheres to our values of accountability, diversity, innovation, integrity and opportunity. I was reminded while in Singapore for the inaugural ASEAN Conference 2016 that the profession is truly global and thrives by working together with partners. The event, attended by more than 500 delegates, was themed ‘Transforming the face of accounting and finance talent’. I was honoured to speak at the event and welcome guests from ACCA’s Council and the ASEAN Federation of Accountants, as well as local and regional members, guests and partners. I spoke about the need for people and business to work together for the benefit of society. I said that over the years we have had many transformations, and there will be more to come. After all, as the UK Brexit vote has shown, we live in uncertain, complex and ambiguous times. It’s my belief that stability can be achieved by forging strong working relationships and partnerships. Indeed, ACCA’s growth has been achieved because we have forged strong partnerships with other bodies, employers and learning providers.  

ACCA is deeply committed to its many partnerships around the world. They are what make the profession thrive and they are always entered into with members and student value at their heart. Together, we work to grow the profession so that these partnerships will continue to transform the face of accounting and finance talent. We are a global family, and we can and do transform societies. 

As I hand over the reigns of presidency after what has been an amazing year, despite the turbulent times we live in, I want to thank members for their fantastic support and for sharing their stories with me of how ACCA has changed their lives. I am proud to have served you.

Alexandra Chin runs her own practice in Sabah, Malaysia