On April 19, 2020 (Baisakh 7, 2077), the members of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI) received an email from the recently elected President of the Institute, CA. Atul Kumar Gupta under the subject-line “ICAI – Recent Initiatives for Students & Members”. The email outlined recent progress made by the ICAI for its members and students along with updates and suggestions on the COVID-19 pandemic.
There are 13 points outlined in the email. However, for most of the Nepalese CA fraternity point no. 11b came as an interesting news. The point simply said:
“11 b. Approval of MRA with ICA Nepal.”
To see the full email click here: https://pr9.netcoresmartech.com/icaimmsmt/preview.php?nc=vm&m=1640&u=AwQIAQdQVlY=
CAMUNCHNEPAL.COM contacted the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nepal (ICAN) to seek details of the MRA. On an email response to our query CA. Sanjay Kumar Sinha, Executive Director for ICAN confirmed that MRA has been approved at the ICAI’s end. However, he said that the signing of the MRA is still pending.
CAMUNCHNEPAL.COM was also able to contact the ICAI. According to Mr. Nitin Grover, Assistant Secretary (International Affairs) for ICAI, the MRA between ICAN and ICAI to mutually recognize the Qualification and admit the Members in good standing by prescribing a bridging mechanism between the two institutes, has been approved by the Union Cabinet of India. He further added that the ICAN and ICAI aim to establish a mutual co-operation framework for the advancement of Accountancy profession in the region.
As per the email response, under the terms of the MRA, ICAI members will be eligible to apply for ICAN membership subject to passing the ICAN’s Corporate Law and Taxation examinations. The MRA allows the ICAI membership to appropriately qualified ICAN members subject to passing of Corporate Laws and other Economic Laws, Direct Tax Laws & International Taxation and Advanced Indirect Tax Laws.
Though we could not establish when the MRA will be signed by the two parties, we have been told it is expected to be signed soon. Taking into account the global pandemic of COVID-19 sweeping across the globe, that has also heavily affected India and Nepal and there being currently lockdowns in both the countries, we expect that the MRA will be signed only after India and Nepal has a measurable control over the pandemic, which may take a couple of months at the very least.
There has been speculations going around in certain news portals in Nepal that the MRA is discriminatory on the Nepali side because ICAN members who are Nepali citizens can only be able to get membership of the Indian institute but no Certificate of Practice (CoP) but members of ICAI will be able to be partners of Chartered Accountants firm in Nepal in which Nepali citizens have at least 51% ownership. However, CAMUNCHNEPAL.COM was not able to confirm these reports from either the ICAN or the ICAI.
The Nepali citizens who are members or students of ICAI and who do not currently have the membership of ICAN are however elated and relieved that the MRA would mean that the current provision of One Year Articleship to get ICAN’s membership will be slashed. CA. Sanjay Kumar Sinha however said that the signing of MRA by both the institutes is still pending, so existing provision of internship is still valid.
For more updates, please visit http://www.camunchnepal.com