It is hardly surprising to state that in running our practices we concentrate more on the business and technicalities than on the less discernible ethical considerations.  It is also indisputable to say that the three elements carry equal weight in the risk management function of our practices.  It is not difficult to understand that a business or technical decision that goes wrong will have a more limited impact on our fortunes than an ethical accident.  The latter is more likely to produce lasting damage to the reputation, credibility and trustworthiness of a practice not to mention possible severe financial repercussions.  We ignore ethics in our practices at our own risk.  We will however also be harming our clients and the wider society.

There is never enough said about the importance of ethics in the Accountancy Profession.  This is manifested in the lengthy code of ethics which is a dynamic document and standard continuously under development in order to stay in line with the perils and complexities of modern business and professional and regulatory demands.

Our session will deal with practical application of several important elements of the code of ethics. However, we do not only find ethical content in the code but also in the standards which we adopt in our work. Accordingly, we will search and extract ethical elements from the standards initially perceived as being purely technical and detect that ethics are prevalent in all our authoritative guidance and not reserved only to specific areas.

This session is generally of interest to practitioners in every discipline of the accountancy profession, every size, clients and stakeholders wishing to know more about value creation of their service providers.

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Mario P Galea is a certified public accountant holding a warrant to practice both as an accountant and as an auditor.  Currently practising as a business advisor providing governance oversight and advisory services to businesses and corporations.  Serves as an independent non-executive director on the boards and audit committees of various listed companies in the financial and commercial sectors.  Mentor and advisor to family businesses. Founder, managing partner and chairman of accountancy and audit firm EY in Malta until retirement in 2012.  Specialised in auditing and assurance which he has practiced for 35 years in Malta and abroad.  Lectured in auditing, assurance and professional and business ethics and led several training courses.  Speaker at various business and professional conferences in Malta and abroad.  Assisted businesses in several areas particularly relating to governance, accounting and systems of control.  Served as President of the Malta Institute of Accountants and for many years formed part of the Accountancy Board which is the accountancy profession regulator in Malta.  Served on various professional committees in Malta and abroad such as the council of the Federation des Experts Comptables (FEE) in Brussels (now Accountancy Europe).  Member of the Ethics and Regulatory committees of the Malta Institute of Accountants in Malta.

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