IMA Senior Leaders Visit MENA Region in Support of the Management Accounting Profession

Dubai, UAE; 10 March, 2016 – Senior leaders from IMA® (Institute of Management Accountants) Jeff Thomson, CMA, CAE, president and CEO; and Jim Gurowka, CAE, senior vice president of business development, visited the MENA region on an eight-day trip spanning Cairo, Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Riyadh, and Amman. During this trip, Thomson addressed professionals and highlighted the importance of advancing innovation by enabling, creating, and measuring it.

Senior finance and accounting professionals need to get comfortable with supporting, managing, and leading innovation in their companies to continue to remain relevant in today’s challenging economy. As a professional association supporting the profession, IMA plans on assisting these organizations through their experience and expertise.

The visit to Cairo lasted two days, where the CMA® (Certified Management Accountant) Job Placement Forum took place and attracted 30 companies with more than 700 CMA-certified professionals, allowing employers to meet with prospective candidates. A live television interview with Thomson was held on CBC Extra on how accountants can help drive economic growth in Egypt.

The UAE visit included seminars hosted by the Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) in Dubai and the local IMA chapter in Abu Dhabi. On both occasions, Thomson delivered a presentation about the value of innovation at the workplace and introduced the IMA research book, “Advancing Innovation: Galvanizing, Enabling & Measuring for Innovation Value”!

In Riyadh, the IMA delegation visited King Saud and Al Faisal Universities. A Memo of Understanding was signed with King Saud University. At Al Faisal University, Thomson presented to more than 270 attendees about transitioning from an oil-based economy to a knowledge-based one.

In a separate meeting with the Saudi Organization for Certified Public Accountants (SOCPA), Thomson and the IMA delegation discussed the upcoming 4th IMA Middle East Conference http://www.imamiddleeastconference.org, taking place April 1314, 2016 in Riyadh, KSA.

The topic of innovation was also the highlight of the visit to Amman. A roundtable discussion led by Thomson and organized by the local IMA-affiliated chapter, JAMA (Jordanian Association of Management Accountants) hosted 30 CFO’s from major industries and sectors.

In the evening, Thomson had the opportunity to meet with IMA members and CMA graduate during an event hosted by JAMA.

Commenting on the trip, Thomson said: “For nearly a decade, IMA has experienced unprecedented growth in the Middle East region, particularly for our CMA certification. Looking at the numbers of new CMAs and CMA candidates, we’ve seen a clear uptick in this part of the world, evidence of the high demand for skilled management accounting professionals.”

“As the economy of the Middle East continues to expand and the importance of a knowledge-based economy gains momentum, we expect this trend to continue. IMA is clearly committed to this region, and our staff offices in Dubai and Cairo are empowered to serve our members, potential members, and partners with local relevance,” Thomson added.

For more information on IMA’s activities in the Middle East and the CMA certification program, visit www.imamiddleeast.org.