Date
18 December 2017
Hong Kong's accounting firms must diversify their income sources amid possible regulatory changes in mainland China, says Ronald Kung. Photo: HKEJ
Hong Kong's accounting firms must diversify their income sources amid possible regulatory changes in mainland China, says Ronald Kung. Photo: HKEJ

Accounting industry urged to seek more non-audit business

Hong Kong’s accounting firms must seek more consultancy business and look for new clients to protect themselves against possible adjustments in China’s regulations, an industry representative said.

Ronald Kung Yiu-fai, a council member and vice president of the Hong Kong Institute of Certified Public Accountants (HKICPA), issued the call as China’s finance ministry had proposed to restrict auditing work for mainland-listed companies to domestic accounting firms.

Chinese authorities will unveil the consultation results next year that should clarify some of the concerns that Hong Kong accountants have, Kung said.

Although the policy is unlikely to shut the door to mainland businesses for Hong Kong accounting professionals, the industry should develop more non-auditing services such as consulting, Kung said. 

“The Shanghai-Hong Kong Stock Connect is an example of the convergence of the boundaries between mainland China and Hong Kong,” Kung noted.

“The past situation where Hong Kong firms obtained contracts from mainland clients and outsource some of the tasks to other ally firms has reversed.”

Kung, who is a contender in the HKICPA presidential election, had earlier resigned from all public posts due to discontent over the Hong Kong government’s ruling style.

“If I have to choose I would prefer conscience over the role of president,” Kung added.

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VW/JP/RC

Freelance journalist

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