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April 14, 2008

Accounting technician course launched in India

The Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI) has introduced an accounting technician qualification. India’s largest professional body said the qualification was developed because the country’s growing economy has driven a great demand for unqualified accountants.

“We have been taking various proactive measures from time to time in alignment with the changing facets of the India economy for continuously raising the standards of the quality of accounting and financial reporting,” ICAI president Ved Jain told The Accountant.

“The ICAI has so far focused on the chartered accountant qualification. We have thought over the last 15 years, after liberalisation, that the horizon of the Indian economy has been changing; it has seen unprecedented growth and has changed significantly, this has resulted in the demand for accountants on the second tier in large numbers.

“To fill in this gap, where the industry and the particular service sector is looking to the second tier of accountant at the operational level, the ICAI thought fit to come out with a course curriculum. That is why the ICAI thought [about introducing the technician qualification] as we have domain expertise in designing and delivering the accounting knowledge.”

The ICAI’s chartered accountancy programme enrols 125,000 students each year. The new technician course is predicted to attract at least 50,000 students and will be split into three stages. The first requires an entrance exam, the second the completion of a technical accounting curriculum including a final exam, and the third stage involves a year of practical work experience.

The  course will comprise of four papers: accounting; law, general commercial knowledge and business communication; cost accounting and financial management; and taxation (direct and indirect).

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