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Institute of Singapore Chartered Accountants

Member | Established: 1963 | Member since 1977

The ISCA was established in 1963 and is recognized under the Singapore Accountancy Commission Act. ISCA’s responsibilities include: setting auditing standards to be applied in Singapore, setting ethical requirements to be observed by its members, administering the Singapore Chartered Accountant Qualification, establishing CPD requirements for its members, and administering its investigative and disciplinary mechanism. ISCA also administers a voluntary quality assurance review mechanism that members are encouraged to participate in to ensure quality of work conducted. Membership with ISCA is mandatory to register as a public accountant and to practice as an auditor in Singapore. Membership is voluntary for all other professional accountants. In addition to being a Member of IFAC, ISCA is also a full member of the ASEAN Federation of Accountants.

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Statements of Membership Obligation (SMO)

The Statements of Membership Obligations form the basis of the IFAC Member Compliance Program. They serve as a framework for credible and high-quality professional accountancy organizations focused on serving the public interest by adopting, or otherwise incorporating, and supporting implementation of international standards and maintaining adequate enforcement mechanisms to ensure the professional behavior of their individual members.

Last updated: 08/2023
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SMO Action Plan

Status of Fulfillment by SMO

  • SMO 1: Quality Assurance

    The responsibility for quality assurance (QA) reviews in Singapore rests with the Public Accountants Oversight Committee (PAOC), operating under the authority of the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA).

    Under the Accountants Act, all public accountants and public accounting entities are subject to mandatory QA reviews under the ACRA’s Practice Monitoring Program (PMP). For inspections of audits of non-PIEs, the PAOC delegates review responsibilities to ISCA. The PMP is aligned with the requirements of SMO 1.

    ISCA fully supports the implementation of QA reviews in Singapore. In addition to the PMP, ISCA has also established a Quality Assurance Review (QAR) program which is voluntary for its members. The QAR Program involves the review of the public accountant’s engagement files for compliance with the Singapore Standards on Auditing, adherence to SSQMs (which are based on ISQMs) and adherence to Ethics Pronouncements as issued by ISCA. Upon completion of the QAR Programme, a QAR report which includes the findings and proposed action plans will be provided to the public accountant.

    ISCA publishes technical guides and articles on SSQM for its members. Additionally, it offers continuing professional development (CPD) courses on topics related to quality management and findings from PMP, and regularly reviews its CPD programs to evaluate whether they continue to meet members’ needs.

    To support SSQM implementation, ISCA has undertaken the following activities:

    • Panel discussions at ISCA’s Practitioners Conference 2021 and SMP Symposium 2022;
    • Development of the ISCA quality management toolkit comprising possible quality risks, suggested policies and procedures, implementation help tips, practical examples, forms and templates;
    • Quality management workshops and webinars; and
    • Audit bulletins to provide guidance on common practical challenges with regard to quality management.

    Current Status: Sustain

  • SMO 2: International Education Standards

    In Singapore, the Accountants Act and the Singapore Accountancy Commission Act establishes initial professional development (IPD) and continuing professional development (CPD) requirements for public accountants. The entities that are responsible for the implementation of IPD and CPD are the Singapore Accountancy Commission (SAC), the Accountant and Regulatory Authority, and the ISCA.

    ISCA administers the Singapore Chartered Accountants (CA) Qualification program. The institute works with the SAC to ensure that the requirements of the CA qualification are in line with the IES and ISCA reports that overall, the program incorporates IES (including revisions & updates). The Singapore CA Qualification adopts a learning-outcome approach, taking into consideration the requirements of the revised IES (2, 3, and 4) and inputs from stakeholders within the accountancy industry. The practical experience and examination requirements (IES 5 and 6) were also updated in 2017 based on the revised IES, where candidates are required to demonstrate additional competences mapped to revised learning outcomes. ISCA reported that a review of its educational programming was conducted in 2021 to align with industry developments and reciprocity agreements with ICAEW, ICAS and Chartered Accountants Ireland and confirms that it is aligned with the latest IES.

    ISCA is also responsible for establishing CPD requirements for its members. Eligible members are selected at random for CPD audits as part of monitoring compliance. The institute regularly offers seminars, courses and conferences for its members. As reported on its website, ISCA is promoting “Capability Development” to enhance firms, and accounting and finance personnel in companies through technology, human capital development, business, and management development and quality assurance. ISCA reports that it offered 406 CPD courses in 2022. In 2022, ISCA reviewed its offerings to include “bite-sized” learning content.

    Current Status: Sustain

  • SMO 3: International Standards on Auditing

    Under the Accountants Act, the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA) is responsible for approving auditing standards to be applied in Singapore. ACRA oversees the entire standard-setting process for auditing standards through its Public Accountants Oversight Committee (PAOC).

    The International Standards on Auditing (ISA), as issued by the International Auditing and Assurance Standards Board (IAASB) are adopted as Singapore Standards on Auditing (SSA), with modifications to reflect national requirements where appropriate, by ISCA’s Auditing and Assurance Standards Committee (AASC). SSA are issued following the review of the ISCA Council and the approval of the PAOC. As reported by ISCA in 2023, the SSA are aligned with the requirements in the 2021 Handbook.

    ISCA maintains an ongoing process to ensure the SSA are up-to-date and incorporate the latest ISA. ISCA contributes to implementation of the standards by offering training workshops and seminars and the preparation and issuance of guidance to its members. Continuing professional development courses are offered on the standards and other related topics, and courses are reviewed periodically to ensure that they include the latest information. ISCA monitors the IAASB work program for changes and keeps members updated by publishing material on the ISCA’s Audit & Assurance webpage, in the monthly ISCA Journal, and in its bi-weekly e-newsletter.

    Other than adopting international standards issued by the IAASB, ISCA’s AASC also develops the following:

    • Authoritative Statements of Auditing Practice (SAP) on matters of relevance in Singapore, not covered by the international standards
    • Non-authoritative Audit Guidance Statement (AGS (AGSs are reviewed and updated as and when needed)) to provide interpretive guidance and practical assistance to auditors, such as on the application of data analytics in a risk-based audit model, sample independent auditor’s reports; and
    • Non-authoritative Auditing Bulletins that are informative/educational publications issued to highlight emerging topical issues for consideration by professional accountants in public practice.

    ISCA also provided CPD courses under the ISCA SMP Learning Roadmap, which was developed to serve the needs of the various levels of audit professionals in SMPs. ISCA offers courses on practical audit workshops, practical application of ISCA Audit Manual, overview of SSAs on auditing and technical updates.

    ISCA also actively contributes to the development of international standards through regular submissions of comment letters in response to consultations by the IAASB. ISCA also participates in roundtable discussions – for example, a recent roundtable jointly organized by IFAC, the IAASB and ASEAN Federation of Accountants (AFA) on the proposed ISA for LCEs.

    Current Status: Sustain

  • SMO 4: Code of Ethics for Professional Accountants

    In Singapore, both the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA) and ISCA are responsible for establishing ethical requirements for professional accountants. Under the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority Act, ACRA is responsible for setting ethical requirements for public accountants and public accountants are required to comply with ACRA’s Code of Professional Conduct and Ethics for Public Accountants and Accounting Entities.

    The ISCA issues the ISCA Ethics Pronouncement (EP) 100 Code of Professional Conduct and Ethics (the ISCA Code), and members of the institute (both public accountants and non-public accountants) are required to adhere to the ISCA Code. This Code is developed in line with the 2022 IESBA Code of Ethics and encompasses any Singapore provisions to reflect the local legal and regulatory environment. ISCA plans to issue a revision to EP 100 based on the IESBA’s final pronouncements with an effective date of December 15, 2022. The revisions include Revisions to the Code Relating to the Definition of Engagement Team and Group Audits

    The ISCA Ethics Committee (EC) is responsible for the entire due process when updating the Code. If there are changes which involve sensitive or material matters impacting public accountants, the EC will consult ACRA’s PAOC on the appropriate course of action. At the end of the process, the EC will recommend revisions to the ISCA Council for approval.

    In 2021, ISCA has issued the revised EP 100 Implementation Guidance 4 that provided clarification on Financial Institutions Considered as Public Interest Entities. During ISCA Practitioners Conference 2021, ISCA addressed the role of auditors as ethical leaders utilizing the ethics code.

    ISCA raises awareness on developments in ethics and the IESBA Code on its website, through its monthly journal, and by maintaining an extensive webpage dedicated to Standards & Guidance ( on ethics for its members and the public. ISCA supports the implementation of ethics standards on an ongoing basis through training, seminars, guidance publications, and updates to its continuing professional development programs.

    It also actively participates in the international standard setting process by providing comments to the IESBA Exposure Drafts and other public consultations.

    Current Status: Sustain

  • SMO 5: International Public Sector Accounting Standards

    The Accountancy Functions (Consolidation) Act 2022 established the AS Committee and appointed the Accountant-General of Singapore as the legal authority to prescribe public sector accounting standards. Statutory bodies in Singapore are required to apply Statutory Boards Financial Reporting Standards (SB-FRS) and are considered generally consistent with International Public Sector Accounting Standards (IPSAS). Although the Singapore Financial Reporting Standards are the main guiding framework for SB-FRS, individual SB-FRS consider and are modified according to the unique context of the different statutory bodies.

    For its part, ISCA is active in training and strengthening the financial competencies of members working in the public sector as well as the wider public sector finance community. This is done through offering training on accounting and other topics relevant to the public sector, conferences, programs and guidance. ISCA also publishes news related to the IPSAS and IPSASB to share with members.

    Current Status: Sustain

  • SMO 6: Investigation and Discipline

    The responsibility for the investigation and discipline (I&D) of public accountants in Singapore rests with the Public Accountants Oversight Committee (PAOC), operating under the authority of the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority, and the ISCA.

    Under the Accountants Act, the PAOC is responsible for I&D procedures for public accountants, accounting corporations, accounting firms and accounting LLPs. Meanwhile, ISCA’s I&D function covers all its members which do include public and non-public professional accountants. ISCA reports that the enforcement mechanisms are aligned with the requirements of SMO 6.

    ISCA highlights the rules and regulations of the institute to its members and the public by posting information on its website related to initiating a complaint and the complaint process. In addition, disciplinary action and sanctions are also made publicly available.

    Current Status: Sustain

  • SMO 7: International Financial Reporting Standards

    Under the Accountancy Functions (Consolidation) Act 2022, the AS Committee is responsible for formulating accounting standards in Singapore, which comprise a framework of national standards fully converged with the IFRS for listed companies and national standards closely modeled after IFRS and have been modified to contain a small number of country specific requirements.

    Although ISCA is not responsible for the setting of accounting standards, it has taken an active approach to support implementation by ensuring its members are kept up to date on developments on national and global accounting standards and that members have the necessary support to undertake their work. ISCA’s Professional Standards Division provides technical support on accounting matters. In addition, the Division regularly communicates views and insights related to accounting issues to members and the wider accounting community in Singapore. ISCA’s Financial Reporting Committee also frequently initiates and facilitates discussion on emerging accounting issues, issues guidance on local accounting matters (via ISCA’s website – Technical Guidance issued by ISCA Professional Services Division), and reviews and responds to exposure drafts as issued by the IASB by submitting comment letters featuring the perspective from Singapore (on ISCA’s website – IASB EDs and ISCA Comment Letters).

    ISCA also supports its members by offering continuing professional development courses covering the most recent accounting standards and disseminates information on financial reporting standards used in Singapore on ISCA’s website and other publications.

    Current Status: Sustain


IFAC bears no responsibility for the information provided in the SMO Action Plans prepared by IFAC member organizations. Please see our full Disclaimer for additional information.


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