Reports Presented at AGM 2020

Presidents Report 2019-20 – The 24th Year

The Year 2020 has been a year like no other in our lifetimes.  Like the rest of the world, the Institute in its 24th year, having been incorporated in 1996, was significantly impacted in its operations both in Australia and internationally.

Within Australia our administrative office has been effectively closed since March, 2020 and our staff and Council have adapted to the new COVID-Normal mode of working.

Pre-Pandemic – Hall of Fame awards and conferences – Australia & International

The Institute started its 24th year, having been incorporated in 1996, focused both on consolidating membership services and laying the groundwork growth both in Australia and internationally in new Asian Markets. The focus within Australia was on the continuing professional development of our Australian members via webinars and symposiums; and through improving the quality of our website and our publication ‘On Target’. The focus overseas was the continuing professional development of our overseas members via symposiums and conferences; and venturing into new Asian Markets.

After the last AGM (and prior to the Pandemic) the Hall of Fame inductions; professional symposiums and seminars and international conferences that were held in Australia and Internationally are listed below:

  • The Accounting Hall of Fame® and the Management Accounting Hall of Fame® awards were presented in Melbourne on 20th November 2019. The inductees in Australia were:
    • Adele Ferguson
    • Samer Shahin
    • Ronald Pitcher, AM
  • The Frontiers of Accounting Symposium was held on 21st November, 2019 – The Keynote speakers were: Prof Damminda Alahakoon; Prof Paul Mather; Prof Carol Tilt; Prof Paul De Lange; Prof Nava Subramanium and ICMA President Prof Brendan O’Connell. Prof John Miller, AO, Patron ICMA gave the Welcome Address.
  • The Inaugural Global Accounting Hall of Fame Induction Dinner was held at on Friday, 29th November 2019, at Suntec Singapore International Convention & Exhibition Centre. Prof Janek Ratnatunga attended and made a presentation on the occasion. The inductee was:
    • Dr Gerard Ee Hock Kim
  • The International Management Accountant (IMAC) 2019 and Management Accounting Hall of Fame® Awards were held on 2nd December, 2019 in UK Petra Surabaya. Prof Janek Ratnatunga and Dr Chris D’Souza attended and made presentations at the conference. The inductee was:
    • Professor Slamet Sugiri
  • The Strategic Management Accounting Forum 2019 was held in Manila, Philippines on 7th December, 2019. Prof Brendan O’Connell, Prof Janek Ratnatunga & Dr Chris D’Souza attended and made presentations at the conference. The Accounting Hall of Fame® and the Management Accounting Hall of Fame® inductions were also done at the event. The inductees were:
    • Jeffrey C. Lim
    • Noe G. Quiñanola
  • The IMAC 2020 to be held in Hongkong on Dec 10th 2019 was cancelled due to the unrest and political situation in Hong Kong.
  • The Management Accounting Hall of Fame® Awards award 2019 and CMA Australia Grand Conference 2019 titled “Frontiers of Accounting – Maximizing Firm Value” were held in Hanoi, Vietnam, on Dec 14th, 2019. Prof Brendan O’Connell, Prof Janek Ratnatunga & Dr Chris D’Souza attended and made presentations at the conference. The inductee was:
    • Nguyen Thi Hong Thuy
  • The International Management Accountant (IMAC) 2019 and the Inaugural Indian Management Accounting Hall of Fame® induction was held in Kolkata, India on Dec 16th, 2019. Prof Brendan O’Connell, & Dr Chris D’Souza attended and made presentations at the conference. The inductee was:
    • Rev Dr Felix Raj

The profiles of Hall of Fame awards winners can be seen on the website:


As can be seen from above activities, we had a crowded program scheduled for the 2019 – 2020 year many in countries across Asia and the Middle East. We managed to complete our programs scheduled in from June 2019 to early March 2020, till the lockdowns brought all our traditional markets to a standstill.

As the Pandemic rapidly spread across the world, we had to cancel all our face to face programs from the middle of March. Prof Janek Ratnatunga and Prof Brendan O’Connell returned to Australia safely in February.

Dr. Chris D’Souza was in Dhaka in Bangladesh delivering a program early March when India shut its borders and so his program was rescheduled to deliver a program at SMU in Singapore. However, the day before he could reach Singapore, they shut their borders as well. After some frantic travel rescheduling, ICMA managed to get him back to Australia just before the borders closed and airline flights dried up.

The month of April saw the revenue of ICMA significantly reduce and this reduction continued into May. Even June was much below the previous year. This revenue decline made ICMA eligible for Job Keeper and cash flow boosts from the Federal Government and some more grants from the Victorian Government. This boost provided the management a cushion to survive the COVID-related depletion in its revenues.

ICMA Reviews, Responds, Reimagines and Recovers 

I am glad to report that in the months following the outbreak of the pandemic, ICMA reviewed, reimagined and recreated its operations by delivering seminars, webinars, membership evens over Zoom.

As a direct result of the proactive adaptation by our executive, our revenues have recovered to within 5% of previous years. The flip -side of this is that we are no longer eligible for the Job Keeper allowance. Though membership numbers are challenging, we are working on strategies to address this.

The following are some of the Webinars delivered internationally from Australia:

  • April 23rd, 2020 – Why Audit Opinions are ‘Untrue’ and ‘Unfair’ – Prof Janek Ratnatunga.
  • April 30, 2020 – Drivers of Corporate Success Post COVID-19 – Dr Chris D’Souza
  • May 6, 2020 – The Rising Importance of Integrated Reporting, Climate Change Reporting & Environmental Management Accounting – Prof Brendan O’Connell
  • May 22, 2020 – Webinar – Information Session – How to become a Certified Management Accountant – Dr Chintan Bharwada and Chris Perera
  • May 30, 2020 – The Social CRM: Taming the Wild Child of Big Data and CRM – Prof Janek Ratnatunga.
  • June 4, 2020 – Post-COVID Opportunities for Businesses and How Senior Finance Professionals Can Help – Prof Brendan O’Connell
  • June 10, 2020 – Visionary Leadership – Driving Post COVID-19 Success! – Dr Chris D’Souza
  • June 24, 2020 – Costing Life: Air, Water and Food – Prof Janek Ratnatunga.
  • July 2, 2020 – Finance Leadership during a Crisis: Respond, Recover and Reimagine – Prof Paul Mather
  • July 22, 2020 – Sustainable Marketing – No longer just a “green” word, but a strategic mindset – Dr Chintan Bharwada
  • Aug 20, 2020 – 50 Shades of ‘New Normal’ (Part 1): Whipping Companies to Embrace an Alternate Societal Lifestyle – Prof Janek Ratnatunga.
  • Sep 3, 2020 – Webinar: 50 Shades of ‘New Normal’ (Part 2): The Emergence Of ‘Crazynomics’ – Prof Janek Ratnatunga.
  • Sep 10, 2020 – 50 Shades of ‘New Normal’ (Part 3): The Clash of Global Interconnections – Prof Janek Ratnatunga.
  • Sep 16, 2020 – What organisations do in times of Crisis – What they should do – Prof Brendan O’Connell
  • Oct 22, 2020 – Information Session – How to become a Certified Management Accountant – Dr Chintan Bharwada & Prof Janek Ratnatunga.
  • Nov 19, 2020 – Digital Marketing and Business Growth – Dr Chintan Bharwada
  • Dec 9, 2020 – Valuation and Distress Analysis in the Post COVID Era — Prof Janek Ratnatunga.

The following are some of the CMA Programs were delivered Zoom from Australia:

  • March 20th to 23rd, 2020 – 4 day Zoom training for Strategic Business Analysis conducted for SMU University Singapore. – Prof Janek Ratnatunga. & Dr Chris D’Souza.
  • June 6th to 8th, 2020 – 3 days Zoom training for Strategic Cost Management conducted for SMU University Singapore. – Prof Janek Ratnatunga. & Dr Chris D’Souza.
  • July 11th to 14th, 2020 – 4 day Zoom training for Strategic Business Analysis conducted for SMU University Singapore. – Prof Brendan O’Connell, Prof Janek Ratnatunga & Dr Chris D’Souza.
  • Aug 21st/22nd & Aug 28th/29th, 2020 – 4 day Zoom training for Strategic Business Analysis conducted in Dhaka Bangladesh. – Dr Chris D’Souza.
  • Sept 12th to 14th, 2020- 3 days Zoom training for Strategic Cost Management conducted for SMU University Singapore. – Prof Janek Ratnatunga. & Dr Chris D’Souza.
  • Oct 2nd to 5th, 2020- 4 day Zoom training for Strategic Business Analysis conducted for SMU University Singapore. – Prof Brendan O’Connell, Prof Janek Ratnatunga & Dr Chris D’Souza.

Syme Business School

When one door closes another one opens. After the closing of the TEQSA door the Pandemic opened the door for Syme Business School to organise Zoom programs some of which are listed above and below.

As a result of this, ICMA is happy to announce that Syme Business school made a profit for the first time during the financial year 2019-20 and is continuing to operate profitably. Consequently, they managed to repay the entire loan of $130,000 taken from ICMA prior to the close of the Financial Year.

The following micro-credentialling certifications were delivered to ICMA members, in association with the Academy of Finance Australia (AFMA) and Mercu Buana University, Jakarta.

  • Certified Analyst in Project Management (CAPM)
  • Certified Analyst in Project Finance (CAPF)
  • Certified International Business Analyst (CIBA)
  • Certified Enterprise Risk Analyst (CERA)
  • Certified Business Analyst (CBV)
  • Certified Digital Marketing Specialist (CDMS)

Publications, Research and Library


The eNewsletter On Target continued to be published and the web-analytics indicates that it gets on average 5,000 visits and 6,000-page views per month.

Management Accounting Frontiers (MAF) continued to be published in 2019.

The Journal of Applied Management Accounting Research (JAMAR) which changed editorial direction in 2017 to publish peer-reviewed practice oriented applied papers for the management accounting profession, continued to publish two issues in 2019.



Research and professional development also continued in the two organizations set up by the ICMA:

  • The Institute of Certified Carbon Analysts and Auditors (ICCAA) and
  • The Institute for the Advancement of Corporate Reporting and Assurance (IACRA).


The Library now has over 12,200 texts and professional and academic publications, and has now one of the best libraries in Australia in the professional areas of management accounting and risk management.

Committees & Boards

The ICMA has a number of Committees and Boards for its Governance.

Education Committee

  • Education Advisory Board
  • Professional Education Sub-Committee
  • Continuing Education Sub-Committee
  • Academic Education Sub-Committee

Membership Committee

  • Membership Advisory Board
  • Membership Services Sub-Committee
  • Industry and Government Engagement Sub-Committee
  • Ethics Sub-Committee

Finance Committee

  • Finance, Audit & Risk Advisory Board

The Council thanks all who voluntarily served on these Committees and Boards for their time and dedication.

Services Provided by the Secretariat.

  • Providing Continuing Professional Education (CPE) to members via Calwest University in the USA and the Academy of Finance and Management Australia (AFMA). Special arrangements were made with these two organisations to provide education programs at discount prices to members due to COVID-19 restrictions.
  • Maintaining the corporate website that is in keeping with the enhanced international profile of ICMA
  • Maintaining a Member’s Only area on the website.
  • Emailing monthly the Members Update, and Publishing in pdf format 6 copies of the On-Target
  • Increasing the holdings of the library by over 200 texts and professional and academic publications during the year.
  • Having a world-class Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system to handle the membership, invoicing, examinations and accounts.
  • Conducting examinations in all Branch locations and in over 20 countries where students undertake the CMA program online.
  • Continue with the CEO Blog, with links to Facebook and Twitter


  • My colleagues will agree that the input of our CEO and Education Committee Chairman, Prof Janek Ratnatunga, our Treasurer, Dr Chris D’Souza; and our Editor of On Target Direct, Dr. Chintan Bharwada.
  • The Editors and the international panel of referees for their work in publishing Management Accounting Frontiers (MAF) and Journal of Applied Management Accounting Research (JAMAR).
  • Special thanks also go to:
  • Prof Michael Tse, our Global Chairman
  • David Cartney, our Vice-President
  • Hans Ferdinand, our Secretary
  • Jehan Ratnatunga, our webmaster
  • Chris Perera, our Executive Officer
  • Finally, a vote of thanks to our auditor Ben Kaplan who has once given his time to discharge his duties very professionally.

Membership Committee Chairman’s Report

The Membership Committee Chairman John Donald was unable to come for the AGM and Dr. Chris D’Souza presented the report. Membership was significantly impacted by Covid19.  The second half of the year saw a fall in membership renewals as well as new memberships.

We had a 2% decrease in CMAs and a much higher -40% decrease in the lower levels of membership (CAT/RCA/GMA) – overall financial membership declined by +3% . The new Membership Designation of University Student Membership should enable us to have a feeder group for future growth in Memberships.

Although membership growth is not a KPI of ICMA, which instead aims for quality by positioning itself as the only specialist professional body for senior executives with education programs at the master’s degree level, members represent the lifeblood of the Institute.

The overall membership of the ICMA now stands at approximately 8,208 members in 60 countries.

Education Committee Chairman’s Report

Prof Janek Ratnatunga, the Education Committee chairman provided an overview of the Education Program of CMA Australia:

Education Program of CMA Australia:

The Program has Nine Levels:

  • Certified Accounting Technician (CAT)
  • Registered Cost Accountant (RCA)
  • Registered Business Accountant (RBA)
  • Graduate Program (For School Leavers) – GMA & AMA
  • Graduate Conversion Program (For Non-Accounting Graduates/ Professionals) – GMA& AMA
  • CMA Program (For Accounting Graduates/Professionals) –CMA
  • CGBA – For Non-accounting Graduates
  • MBA, CMA program for Global Leaders
  • DBA, CMA program for Applied Research

The Program can be undertaken via:

  • University Degree (Undergraduate/Masters)
  • Recognised Provider Institution
  • Corporate In-House

Prof Ratnatunga also reported that to facilitate its educational objectives in addition to its own nine-level CMA education program, the Institute has accredited several universities which have master’s degree subjects that are equivalent to the CMA program. Some of these universities also provide in-house training and examinations of the CMA program. Accounting graduates can do CMA accredited units at these universities to qualify for CMA status.  The details of these universities and the subjects accredited are listed on the CMA Website.

CMA Australia also has Recognised providers in Australia and in many different countries the details of which are listed on our website.

Certificates of Proficiency

The following Certificates of Proficiency Programs were designed and offered in 2019-2020.

  • International Financial Reporting Standards
  • Risk Management (online)
  • Islamic Banking and Finance
  • Family Business.
  • Foreign Exchange Management
  • Transport and Shipping
  • Supply Chain Management
  • Project Management (online)
  • Project Finance (online)
  • Takaful (Islamic) Insurance
  • International Business Analysis (online)
  • Logistics Management
  • Wealth Management
  • Telecommunications Pricing
  • Company Secretarial Practice
  • Crisis Management
  • Forensic Accounting and Auditing
  • Human Resource Management
  • Sustainable Procurement
  • Cross-Cultural Negotiations
  • Performance Budgeting
  • VAT Law & Practice (UAE)
  • Performance and Valuation
  • Accounting Practice (Vietnam)
  • Performance & Valuation
  • Business Valuation (online)
  • Digital Marketing (online)

Membership Pathways

The Institute of Certified Management Accountant (ICMA) offers a number of membership pathways as follows:

  • University Graduates in Accounting
  • University Graduates in Finance
  • MBA Degree Holders
  • University Graduates with Non-Accounting Degrees
  • Diploma and Advanced Diploma Holders in Accounting
  • Members of Other Professional Accounting Bodies
  • Members of Other Professional Non-Accounting Bodies
  • Part Qualified Students of Other Professional Accounting Bodies
  • School Leavers
  • Academics
  • Distance Education Scholarship Program
  • Emerging Professional Scholarship Program

Treasurers Report

Dr Chris D’Souza presented the Treasurer report. Despite the Pandemic we are pleased to report that in its 24th   year your Institute substantially improved its Financial position, largely due to the government assistance which offset the Pandemic setback to our operations.

We also overcame last year’s setback to Syme Business school and successfully implemented some new strategies which saw SBS earn revenue and start recoup its losses – it made a Profit of approx. 50K in 2019-20 and paid off the entire load of $130K to ICMA and continues to be profitable in the current year as well.

During the Financial Year 2019-20, the Membership Income of the association grew by 6% over previous year and total Income grew by 4% over previous year.

Professor Brendan O’Connell, FCMA

President, ICMA Australia