The Professional Accountants in Business (PAIB) Committee of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Pakistan (ICAP) organized CFO Conference 2021 “CFO in the world 2.0 – 3600 perspective” on May 24, 2021 virtually through state-of-the-art online events platform. This year the CFO conference was held virtually with high-profile experts and corporate leaders from across the globe to discuss the pertinent topics related to global, economic and technological dimensions of the world post Covid 19. The virtual event provided an opportunity to thousands of ICAP Members and business and finance leaders from all over the world to attend the much anticipated CFO conference.
Mr. Iftikhar Taj, President ICAP welcomed all the international and national delegates. He said that ICAP is the premier body of Pakistan, recognized throughout the world. The CFO conference provides a platform to learn about the solutions of the challenges faced by finance experts in the new normal. The digital economy is rapidly developing worldwide and it is one of the most important drivers of innovation, competitiveness and growth. The advancement and adoption of digital technologies and business models will enable companies to achieve greater scale, penetrate new markets more swiftly, and understand their customers better.
Mr. Alan Johnson, President, International Federation of Accountants (IFAC) speaking on the Global Dimension – Anticipation and preparation for the Next uncertainty said that finance leaders should plan for the world where both globalization and anti-globalization pressures remain enduring features of the business environment. In this new decade, technological advancements have the capability to redefine economic activities and government services. The developments in technology have impacted employment, creating alternative job opportunities. Daily life and businesses are increasingly becoming digital and the pandemic has greatly accelerated this trend. IFAC and ICAP working relation is of more than 40 years based on integrity and trust. He added that ICAP members have made commendable contribution in various IFAC boards and committees.
Dr. Reza Baqir, Governor State Bank of Pakistan, speaking on the occasion congratulated ICAP for organizing CFO Conference 2021 and also appreciated ICAP contribution towards the Pakistan economy. He said that the challenges for the developing countries in the new normal are unprecedented, causing economic, social and sustainable development concerns. The pandemic has pressed the reboot button of economies globally with long lasting impacts including lower investment, erosion of human capital to lower productivity, limited income growth and structural transformation in countries across the world. Efforts need to be made to grow Pakistan’s GDP in next 5 years and we have all the capabilities to achieve this target. We have been able to increase our gross and net reserves. We need to diversify our exports base as other nations have done, he further added.
Mr. Khalilullah Shaikh, Council Member ICAP & Chairman, Professional Accountants in Business Committee, shared the Conference objectives and the Institute’s contribution towards the economic development of Pakistan. CFO conference is the flagship event of the Institute. This Conference provides an opportunity to finance professionals to discuss and share the latest trends impacting the finance professionals. He also highlighted various initiatives like National Finance Olympiad, Mentorship program, Industry Specific Guidelines, Ethics Dilemma App, CA Toastmaster Club, Finance Transformation Series, Professional Excellence Award and Corporate Advisory Forum taken for the benefit of members of ICAP.
The lineup of speakers for the conference included Joerg Steinhaeuser (Executive Vice President Finance at Siemens Gas & Power GmbH & Co KG), Tania Aidrus (Former Special Assistant to PM Digital Pakistan), Mr. Ashfaq Yousuf Tola FCA, Vice President ICAP, Jehan Ara (Startup Ecosystem Expert, Member of the PM’s Taskforce on IT & Telecom), Ali Khizar (Head of Research at Business Recorder), Dr. Amjad Waheed (CEO NBP Fund
Management Ltd), Salim Ghauri (Founder & CEO Netsol Technologies), Mazhar Hasnani FCA (CFO Engro Corp), Imran Batada (Founding Director Center for Information & Communication Technology IBA), Samiullah Siddiqui FCA (Finance Director Oxford University Press), Sumair Sayani FCA (Founder, Pathos AI), Dr. Shahid Qureshi (Associate Professor & Program Director-CED, IBA) and Muhammad Faisal FCA (COO, KIA Motors) who shared their expect views with the audience.
Adding a fresh motivational touch to the conference there was an inspirational session organized, titled Winning with Wasim Akram by the Sultan of Swing himself and a light hearted session – Rekhta with the Legend by Mr. Zia Mohyeddin. The conference provided a platform to leading industry experts and business professionals to discuss, debate and seek pragmatic solutions of emerging business and finance issues.