The Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI) plans to familiarise its members, especially the partners of small auditing firms, with the best transfer pricing methods to help them take up larger audit assignments involving companies that have overseas businesses.
“Transfer pricing is gaining ground each day. In the years to come, it is going to become far more important. The small and medium practitioners’ committee that we have set up will have to do lot of work in this direction to see how we can empower small practitioners,” said ICAI president Amarjit Chopra.
According to him, the institute will have to engage in capacity building for small and medium practitioners. “One is that you promote networking deals, mergers and de-mergers but more important to my mind is the creation of enabling circumstances to make them operate at low costs by having access to the technical information at a much lower cost,” Chopra said.
Understanding transfer pricing audit involves knowing the pricing systems of foreign markets, the kind of methods used there and how they are applied.
But these information are not freely available. Most of the times, accountants need to spend around Rs 3 lakh to access such information. So, unless small practitioners are sure of their returns, they are not willing to keep themselves update on such matters.
Chopra said ICAI would join hands with the vendors and procure transfer pricing software for the members who can access it cheap. This will be a very important source of professional opportunity in the years to come.