Both the private and public sector entities will have their Financial Reports assessed for this year’s Financial Reporting (FiRe) Award ceremony to be held on 17th December 2021 in recognition of the best performing entities.
The FiRe Award, which is aimed at reviewing financial reporting compliance levels among corporate entities, launched its 19th edition of the Excellence in Financial Reporting, today, at the Serena Hotel, Nairobi.
Some of the areas that will be evaluated in this year’s Award include governance, environmental and sustainability reporting, compliance with applicable accounting standards and overall presentation of Annual Reports and Financial Statements.
The National Securities Exchange Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and Chairman of the FiRe Award Executive Committee, Mr Geoffery Odundo, said that this year’s event focuses on how the Covid -19 pandemic, has affected businesses and livelihoods.
“The heightened turmoil in global financial markets, precipitated by the ongoing pandemic calls for a sound reporting and disclosure framework,” he observed.
He added that this will ensure investment decisions, are based on accurate and timely information that enhance confidence in the capital markets, while also lowering barriers to access capital for issuers.
“The event will also highlight strategies adopted by organizations to remain profitable and deliver services to their clients,” Odundo added.
The Retirements Benefits Authority (RBA) is the new addition to the list of promoters of the FiRe Award which include among others, the Institute of Certified Public Accountants of Kenya (ICPAK), Public Sector Accounting Standards Board (PSASB), Nairobi Securities Exchange (NSE) and the Capital Markets Authority (CMA).
RBA CEO, Mr. Nzomo Mutuku, said that the Institution is delighted to join the FiRe Award promoters to upscale the financial reporting of registered Retirement Benefits Schemes (RBSs).
“We hope that through this partnership, RBA will strengthen its regulatory role and enhance financial disclosure by RBSs, which control over Sh.1.2 trillion worth of assets,’’ he said.
Following RBA’s move to join the FiRe Award, Mutuku stated that all registered RBSs can now participate by submitting their latest financial statements for evaluation and award in the “Pension Schemes Category.
PSASB CEO, Fredrick Riaga, said that FiRe Award is an indispensable event for improving entities’ compliance, with International Public Sector Accounting Standards (IPSAS), reporting framework for transparency and accountability.
He added that the adoption of International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) by entities, has boosted business efficiencies, enhanced comparability and better communication with stakeholders.
Mr. Riaga noted that the adoption of IPSAS and IFRS, has largely been positive in reducing investment risks and attracting capital.
“Disclosure of financial information has also helped in fostering financial prudence and public participation in financial management,” he said, adding that it has contributed to the enhancement of accountability and transparency of public funds.
Meanwhile, the CMA CEO, Wycliffe Shamiah, said that Covid-19 still possesses risks to regulated entities, but the relaxation of the containment measures has resulted in positive signs of economic recovery, that is expected to lead to improved profitability for the listed and regulated entities.
“The capital markets have remained resilient, and we are optimistic that the projected economic growth, will support a steady recovery of the market,” he observed.
Further, the ICPAK CEO, Edwin Makori, said that the pandemic has greatly revolutionized accounting in the country.
“The pandemic has significantly changed how financial reporting is done. Over the years, our focus has been on the requirements of the standards,” he noted.
Under this year’s theme of ‘Promoting Financial Reporting Excellence in an Uncertain Global Economy’, the entities have been given up to the 30th October, to submit their financial reports for assessment.
Last year, FiRe Award attracted 244 entities from the public sector and 50 from the private sector, with similar numbers or more expected this year, as the public sector deepens participation.
By Michael Omondi