Africa suffers an accounting skills deficit. This limits countries' ability to deliver public services effectively, and it impedes private sector growth. Training that would help prevent corruption, misappropriation, and waste is in short supply -- training in areas like internal controls, audits, and similar functions.
To take on this challenge, the FMUP supports the Foundational Accounting and Financial Management Skills Enhancement (FASE) program. FASE takes aim at the skills deficit by improving accounting standards and offering training and support for African accounting talent.
There are two key ways in which FASE is supporting countries to build skills in accountancy.
First, we work with five Francophone countries in Africa on designing or revising accounting technician qualifications. The project includes strengthening working relationships between professional accounting organizations (PAOs) and training institutions, and strengthening the PAOs' infrastructure and capacity to implement the qualifications.
The countries involved in this are Burkina Faso, Côte d'Ivoire, Morocco, Senegal, and Tunisia.
Second, we have developed an Accounting Technician Qualification for Africa to be made available for rollout in African countries in partnership with the Pan African Federation of Accountants (PAFA). The project includes designing or revising accounting technician qualifications/certificates, strengthening working relationships between PAOs and training institutions, and strengthening the PAOs' infrastructure and capacity to implement the qualifications.
Recent work has included research to identify the greatest skills-development needs for accounting technicians, and we are acting on the insights that study yielded to develop and roll out qualification guidelines and learning opportunities.
- FASE completed a regional study that is informing design and content of the accounting technician qualification for the five countries involved with FASE. FASE is now supporting implementation.
- A report on capacity-building initiatives offered to PAFA is underway. We benefit from the active involvement of the PAFA CEO, who serves on the FASE advisory committee.
- FASE facilitated two knowledge-sharing sessions for accounting technicians that benefited PAFA members and involved the participation of PAFA officials. One was a virtual session in June 2022 while the other was a hybrid session in October 2022, which was held in Morocco and physically attended by 60 delegates from Burkina Faso, Côte d'Ivoire, Morocco, Senegal, and Tunisia.
- A session was held at the Africa Congress of Accountants, a major annual conference, held in Côte d'Ivoire in May 2023. We also used the opportunity to consult with program participants to assess efficacy of our initiatives.