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Saudi Organization for Certified Public Accountants (SOCPA)

Who we are?

We are a Saudi professional membership organization, comprising over - members. Through our technical knowledge, skills and expertise, we provide insight and leadership to the accountancy profession in Saudi Arabia.

Our members provide accountancy and financial knowledge and guidance based on the highest professional, technical and ethical standards. We develop and support individuals, organizations and communities to do business with confidence and help them achieve long-term, sustainable economic value.

What we do?

Saudi Certified Public Accountants’ Regulations issued under Royal Decree No. M/12 dated 13.05.1412H (1992 G) entrusted SOCPA to promote the accounting and auditing profession and all matters that might lead to the development of the profession and improve its status, through realization of the following objectives:

  • Review, develop and approve accounting standards.
  • Review, develop and approve auditing standards.
  • Establish the necessary rules for fellowship certificate examination (CPA exam.) including professional, practical and scientific aspects of audit profession and applicable regulations.
  • Organize continuous education programs.
  • Establish an appropriate quality review program in order to ensure that Certified Public Accountants implement professional standards and comply with the provisions of Certified Public Accountants Regulations and relevant by-laws.
  • Conduct special research work and studies covering accounting, auditing and other related subjects.
  • Publish periodicals, books and bulletins covering accountancy and audit related subjects.
  • Participate in local and international committees and symposiums relating to the profession of accounting and auditing.

Key Factors about Socpa

Name: SOCPA (Saudi Organization for Certified Public Accountants)

Founded: 1992

Headquarters: Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

Offices: Jeddah, Dammam

Members: Approximately 5000 members

Governance

The Organization have a General Meeting consisting of all full members who already paid their annual subscriptions. The General Meeting of the Organization shall have the following powers:

  1. Approve the Organization's internal structure 2. Approve the Organization's annual budget and its final accounts for each year; appoint an auditor for its accounts and determine his fees.
  2. Approve both the annual working plan submitted by the Board and the annual report of the Board on the Organization's activity
  3. Elect the members representing Certified Public Accountants on the Organization's Board of Directors.
  4. Discuss all items on the General Meeting's agenda covering matters that fall within the scope of the affairs or interests of the Organization.

The Board of Directors shall manage the affairs of the Organization and practice the powers needed for realizing its objectives. Specifically, the Board shall be empowered to:

  1. Propose amendments it sees fit to the Certified Public Accountant's Regulations; and the rules and decisions necessary for its implementation and any other regulations and rules relating to the accounting and auditing profession.
  2. Review, develop and approve accounting and auditing standards.
  3. Establish the financial and administrative rules for the Organization and determine its fiscal year.
  4. Develop the internal structure of the organization.
  5. Determine membership subscription fees and the method of their collection.
  6. Organize the fellowship certificate examinations to cover the professional, practical and theoretical aspects for the practice of auditing and other related subjects.
  7. Organize programs and courses of continuous education.
  8. Form technical committees such as Accounting and Auditing Standards, Quality Review, Examinations, Nomination, Continuous Education, Professional Ethics Committees etc. and lay down the rules and procedures for the performance of their functions.
  9. Appoint the Secretary General of the Organization and his deputy provided they are Saudi Nationals who satisfy the conditions prescribed for granting the license to practice but are not in practice.

The Board of Directors shall determine their duties, responsibilities, rights and the method of their financial remuneration.

Committees

Technical committees prepare general rules organizing the profession, including establishing and developing accounting and auditing standards, professional ethics, organizing SOCPA fellowship exam, practice monitoring programs. These committees are formed from experts and members of high specialization; University staff, practitioners from companies and government departments. The following table shows the names of committees concerned and their constitution:

Assessments on the members and how to collect.
Name of Committee Professional Academic Government Companies Total
Accounting Standards 4 4 2 3 13
Auditing Standards 4 4 2 1 11
Professional Ethics 3 3 1 2 9
Examinations 3 4 - 1 8
Quality Review 4 3 - 2 9
Training 3 3 1 1 8
Public Relations 3 1 2 4 10
Consulting Services 3 2 1 2 8

Vision, mission and values

Our vision is forSOCPA to be acknowledged as leading the accountancy, audit and finance profession in Saudi Arabia, so people can do business with confidence. We will achieve this by fulfilling the objectives set out in our Certified Public Accountants’ Regulations.These are to:-
  • Review, develop and approve accounting standards.
  • Review, develop and approve auditing standards.
  • Establish the necessary rules for fellowship certificate examination (CPA exam.) including professional, practical and scientific aspects of audit profession and applicable regulations.
  • Organize continuous education programs.
  • Establish an appropriate quality review program in order to ensure that Certified Public Accountants implement professional standards and comply with the provisions of Certified Public Accountants Regulations and relevant by-laws.
  • Conduct special research work and studies covering accounting, auditing and other related subjects.
  • Publish periodicals, books and bulletins covering accountancy and audit related subjects.
  • Participate in local and international committees and symposiums relating to the profession of accounting and auditing.

We believe in acting responsibly, in the best interests of our members and the general public. We act with integrity, creating effective partnerships with organizations and communities worldwide to ensure the highest technical, professional and ethical standards.

History

By the mid of the 14th Hijri century (1930) the accounting and auditing profession acquired the attention of the authorities in Saudi Arabia. The Commercial Business Regulation issued by Royal Decree No. 32, dated 15.01.1350H, stated that accounting records should be maintained. Company Regulations issued by Royal Decree No. M/6, dated 22.03.1385H, required companies to prepare financial statements to be audited by a licensed CPA. It also included provisions that govern the assignment of a CPA and a definition of the scope of his responsibilities. The resolution of H.E Minister of Commerce No. 422, issued in 1388H (1968), specified certain requirements that should be complied with in order to practice auditing in the Kingdom. This resolution was in force until issuing CPA Regulations in 1395H (1974), which was the first foundation stone, lay to organize the profession in the Kingdom. A higher committee for certified public accounting was established, in accordance with the Regulation, to supervise and monitor the profession. By the early years of the last century, many parties started to develop the profession in order to keep it in pace with the peculiar jump witnessed by the Kingdom in many fields. In 1401H (1981), King Saud University commenced to hold a series of symposiums about accounting development methods in Saudi Arabia, in order to reach suitable recommendations for resolving out any obstacles that may hinder the development of the profession. In 1401H, the Academic Board allowed King Saud University to establish Saudi Accounting Association. The purpose of the Association is to promote accountancy thoughts, exchange of ideas and academic productions, consultation and conducting studies.

(1400H/1980 – 1401H/1981): Comparison Study of the Profession in a Number of Countries

The Objective of this study was to determine the experience of those countries in the profession development in order to consider such experience in the development of the profession in the Kingdom.

The U.S.A, West Germany and Tunisia were selected for the comparative study.

(1402H / 1982 – 1406H / 1986): Preparation of Conceptual framework and some selected subjects

After careful consideration of the output of the previous study, the Ministry of Commerce approved the following:

  • Objectives of financial accounting.
  • Concepts of financial accounting.
  • Standards of presentation and general disclosure.

(1412/1992) : Establishment of SOCPA

The efforts made by the Saudi Ministry of Commerce culminated in the issue of Royal Decree No. M/12 dated 13.05.1412H (1992 G) authorizing the passage of the new CPA Regulations. Article (19) of these Regulations stated that an Organization shall be established under the name of (Saudi Organization for Certified Public Accountants “SOCPA”). It shall operate under the supervision of the Ministry of Commerce in order to promote the accounting and auditing profession and all matters that might lead to the development of the profession and improve its status.