Launching Australian tax professionals onto the world stage

By the time you read this month’s President’s Report, the exciting news about the Chartered Tax Adviser designation will have broken. It was my great privilege, together with Anthony Thomas, the immediate past president of the Chartered Institute of Taxation (CIOT), to make the announcement on Tuesday, 29 May 2012. Because the standards of our members match those of the CIOT, all of our members who are presently Fellows of The Tax Institute gain the Chartered Tax Adviser designation.

This achievement recognises the status and standing of our senior members in their tax advisory skills. Of course, responsibility accompanies status and recognition, and members who take up the new designation will be required to maintain higher levels of professional development activity than other members.

Our younger members often travel and live internationally to gain knowledge and experience. In future, their status as a Chartered Tax Adviser will bring them immediate recognition in the United Kingdom, Ireland and Europe as possessing superior tax skills and will favourably impress employers. It is expected that that recognition will extend to most other desirable employment destinations before too long, so that Chartered Tax Adviser will become a truly global designation and will be recognised as a hallmark of high levels of tax competence.

The advantages of Chartered Tax Adviser status are not limited to youth. Australian employers will soon come to recognise the skills and value that a Chartered Tax Adviser can bring to the role, and members of the public will learn to look to a "CTA" to manage their interface with the tax system. The opportunities presented by the new designation are almost endless.

Achieving the agreement with the CIOT has taken 12 months of hard work on both sides and, for this, we are indebted to our Chief Executive Officer, Noel Rowland, and to the CEO of the CIOT, Peter Fanning. Servicing the ongoing relationship between our Institute and the CIOT and the other tax bodies which join will be a very important job and I know it will be in safe hands with Noel.

It is important for members to recognise that this is an early step in The Tax Institute becoming a more outward-looking body internationally. International tax affairs have become commonplace, not just at the “big end”, but also in the experience of the bulk of our members in SME tax practices. The National Council is establishing an international committee to steer our present and future relationships with international bodies. In my opinion, the role of this committee will grow enormously in the future.

Ken Schurgott

Ken Schurgott is President of the National Council at The Tax Institute.

The Tax Institute is Australia’s leading professional association in tax. Its 13,000 members include tax agents, accountants and lawyers as well as tax practitioners in corporations, government and academia.


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