Find Accountancy, Audit and Tax expertise in Antigua and Barbuda
There is recognisable accountancy activity to be found in Antigua and Barbuda: local member firms of the international accountancy network of two major global players are settled in Antigua’s capital city St. John’s – PWC and KPMG. The country has seen increasing efforts to enhance accounting and auditing standards. In 2012 several workshops took place in Antigua aimed at developing accountants’ capacity to provide training in the use of the International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS). The standards have been adopted by the Institute of Chartered Accountants of the Eastern Caribbean (ICAEC) as local GAAP (Generally Accepted Accounting Principles). In 2006 the World Bank completed a report on Standards and Codes on the quality of accounting and auditing infrastructures and practices in the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS). As a result of this the World Bank approved a grant of US$455,000 to help to address the issues identified, and the ICAEC was given a mandate to deliver three core aims before 2013. In the World Banks’ Ease of Doing Business Index (2011) Antigua and Barbuda placed 81st in the world (out of 183 countries) for resolving insolvency, in comparison to St Lucia at 58th, Grenada at 119th and Trinidad and Tobago at 133rd.
Higher education and professional experience are both required to qualify as an accountant. Students can study accountancy at the Antigua State College Undergraduate department, and undertake a recognised accountancy qualification, such as a CAT, CGA, ACCA or CPA programme. The Institute of Chartered Accountants of the Eastern Caribbean (ICAEC), established in 2004, has a local Antigua and Barbuda branch and represents the local accountants. No one may classify themselves as a chartered accountant unless they have been registered as a member of the Institute and possess a valid certificate issued by the Council which entitles them to be in public practice. The ICAEC was founded by accountancy bodies previously active in the region, including the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Antigua and Barbuda, and is additionally a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of the Caribbean.
The corporate tax rate of the country is 25% and, since 1 March 2012, benefits and allowances are also taxed on the islands. The income tax is progressive, rising from 10% for incomes up to $144,000 to 25% for those over this amount, and the income of non-residents is taxed at a flat rate of 25%. The sales tax is 15%. The country is a popular location for offshore businesses, as they are exempt from all direct taxes in respect of international trading or investment. The offshore sector allows the establishment of tax-efficient IBCs or trusts. It is involved in numerous Tax Information Exchange Agreements (TIEA). In the Ease of Doing Business Index Antigua and Barbuda was placed 135th in the world for paying taxes, a relatively low position for a Caribbean nation, although coming substantially above Jamaica at 172nd.
|Accountancy, Audit and Tax organisations in Antigua and Barbuda|
|C.A.S. Hewlett & Co., Chartered Accountants||
|Derrick & Watt||
|Financial Services Corp.||
|Keith Ford M E & Associates||