The Faculty of Business Administration & Economics at Haigazian University, in collaboration with the Azusa-Pacific University – California, organized a symposium titled “The Future of the Accounting Field – Trends and Challenges”, which took place on Thursday the 7th of March 2019, in the University’s auditorium.
The half-day conference brought together experts and scholars from the financial and audit sectors, who debated and exchanged ideas on the present and future trends of Accounting, Taxation and Audit fields.
The conference opened with the welcoming note of the Dean of the Faculty of Business Administration & Economics, Dr. Fadi Asrawi, who shared with the audience the major trends and transformation in the field of Accounting, namely the emergence of new concepts and practices, such as, Cloud Accounting, Automation and Blockchain Technology, Collaborative Accounting, and Outsourcing.
In his address, University President Rev. Dr. Paul Haidostian put particular emphasis on the “human balance and the ethical assets of the Accounting”, pointing out to values such as “attention to detail, precision, truthfulness, consistency, high sense of responsibility, and accountability”.
First to speak was the Head of VAT Audit & Tax Refund Department at the Lebanese Ministry of Finance, Dr. Manal Abdel Samad, on “Lebanon and Financial Flows”. Abdel Samad tackled the issue illicit financial flows associated with money laundering, terrorist financing, customs violations, tax evasion and tax avoidance, compliance management, and risk measurement and management.
In his presentation entitled “US New Tax Laws & International Tax – US Expats Living Overseas”, the Chair of the Department of Accounting, Economics and Finance School of Business and Management at Azusa Pacific University – California, Mr. Vasken A. Kederian, gave a general overview of the US tax system, presenting different taxation strategies, tax parameters and tax brackets in the US system. Kederian highly valued the notion of “ethics” in the Accounting fields, sharing with the audience the ever increasing importance and need of ethical and trustworthy accountants.
Haigazian alumnus, Mr. Ara Fermanian, currently a partner at the Price Waterhouse Coopers (PWC), introduced the field of audit, sharing with the audience his career path at the company. He namely inspired students to join the audit profession, given the benefits the audit firms have to offer. Fermanian stated that such firms are strongly committed to train and invest in their employees, develop their leadership, communication and negotiation skills, and expose them to a wide range of different industries of the economy.
For his part, Mr. Farid Massoud, Partner at Deloitte, presented the topic of “International Financial Reporting Standards”.
Last to speak was CMA Director and Tax Consultant at Ernst & Young, Ms. Zenna Frenn on “the Lebanese Income Tax”. Frenn gave a general overview on taxation of various types of commercial companies, as well as of individuals.
All sessions were moderated by Faculty Member Mrs. Vera Karageuzian. An interactive Q & A followed each speaker, allowing the audience to share their thoughts and questions regarding the topic.
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