Amidst an unprecedented economic crisis engulfing the country, which has impacted businesses and citizens alike, the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Sri Lanka (CA Sri Lanka) in its standing as the National Body of Accountants will take the lead to influence Chartered Accountants to push for transformation to help the country successfully navigate through its ongoing predicament.
The National Conference of Chartered Accountants, organised for the 43rd consecutive year by CA Sri Lanka and dubbed as one of the country’s biggest business summits will help delegates including business leaders, entrepreneurs and c-suite executives effect change which will benefit not just the country and the corporate, but also individuals and society.
The 43rd National Conference will be held from 12th to 14th October 2022 at the Monarch Imperial, Colombo on the inspiring theme ‘Transform’ and the three-day event expected to attract over 2000 delegates, with over 20 speakers expected to share their insights on the unprecedented, complex, and the ever-evolving social and economic situation in Sri Lanka, while exploring possibilities to transform for a better self, society, corporate and country.
Speaking at the press conference, President of CA Sri Lanka Mr. Sanjaya Bandara said that today, Sri Lanka is at crossroads, and the fact of the matter is, that the light at the end of the tunnel is far from visible because the economic crisis the country is facing at present is something vastly different from what Sri Lanka has faced in the past. “Many of us in Sri Lanka have faced our fair share of crises ranging from a war to a tsunami to the Easter Sunday Attack. But the ongoing economic crisis is something unique to us all, as it has affected everyone, both rich and poor, as well as big and small,” he said.
He said Chartered Accountants are no longer restricted to traditional number crunching roles. Instead, today, they are identified as co-pilots of a business because they bring a multitude of critical skills to the table ranging from technical to leadership as well as strategic thinking. “Therefore, this time, instead of only being a co-pilot for our company, we need to take one step further and help fly Sri Lanka out of this crisis,” Mr. Bandara said.
He also emphasised that the country cannot come out of this crisis without embracing true transformation, some of which may be unpopular changes among the masses, but without change, Sri Lanka will continue to remain stagnant as a nation.
Chairperson of the National Conference Committee Ms. Anoji de Silva said that for many decades CA Sri Lanka has always strived to promote thought leadership amongst the business community. “This year’s conference is even more significant as we feel we are in sync with what we as Sri Lankans believe. We are ready for real transformation, a transformation that will change the country for the better.”
She noted that the theme and conference content underscore the importance of a multi-faceted transformation, where everyone must transform themselves, their businesses, society, and country. “Without such a multi-pronged transformation, Sri Lanka cannot and will not be restored to its former glory,” Ms. de Silva added.
Staying true to its theme “transform” the conference will also change the format this year, moving away from the traditional panel discussions by incorporating more speakers who will bring different and diverse perspectives apart from concluding the event with a highly inspiring fireside chat.
Chairman of the Technical Committee Mr. Anura Perera reiterated that Sri Lanka has plunged into an unprecedented economic and humanitarian crisis, and while the dynamics are very fluid, the fact of the matter is that the end to this crisis appears to be very blurred. “While we engage in dissecting and analyzing the root causes of this crisis, the Technical Committee of the National Conference thought that we should focus and discuss the way forward in resolving and coming out of this crisis,” he said. According to Mr. Anura Perera the magnitude of the crisis compels everyone to ‘transform’ and not to merely change, and as such everyone must start by taking a critical look at our own perceptions, views, attitudes and comfort zones. “Although there are a number of critical areas that we can look at the country level transformation we have selected four broad areas that have near consensus from the policymakers, private sector think-tanks and society in general. The courage to map out the strategies and convince the stakeholders for transformation is the biggest barrier we face,” he added.