8 November 2022

Public accountants who wish to renew their certificate of registration for 2023 (2023 PA renewal) are to submit their applications for renewal via BizFile+ portal from 1 December 2022.  

Renewal Criteria 

2.          Public accountants must satisfy all criteria for renewal before their registration can be renewed. This includes compliance with the Continuing Professional Education (CPE) requirements, orders of the Public Accountants Oversight Committee (PAOC) and payment of amounts outstanding to ACRA.   

CPE Requirements 

3.          Public accountants are required to obtain at least 120 CPE hours in each 3-year rolling period, of which at least 90 hours must be in structured learning and at least 20 hours must be acquired through structured learning in each calendar year. The relevant 3-year rolling period for 2023 PA renewal is from 1 January 2020 to 31 December 2022 and is only applicable for public accountants who are registered before 2021. 

4.          As set out in Practice Direction 1 of 2021: Revised Continuing Professional Education Syllabus and Requirements for Registration as a Public Accountant and Renewal of Certificate of Registration (176KB, PDF), the following revised CPE requirements will apply from 2023 PA Renewal: 

a.          Information Technology (IT) (Category 5) is included as a core expertise area and all public accountants are to obtain at least 9 structured hours in this category in each 3-year rolling period starting from 1 January 2022.  Public accountants can consider courses such as Robotic Process Automation, Data Analytics, Data Interpretation and Visualisation, Business Analytics and Reporting, Blockchain and Artificial Intelligence as Category 5; and 

b.          The minimum hours required in Ethics and Professionalism (Category 2) is now 6 hours. 

5.          When completing the 2023 PA Renewal form, public accountants need to enter the hours acquired in Category 5 under “Others” and indicate “Cat 5” in the field under “State relevance and objective of course for hours classified under “Others”.  Please refer to this link (122KB, PDF) for the illustration. 

6.          Public accountants who have been issued orders by the PAOC under the Practice Monitoring Programme to acquire additional CPE hours should not include these additional hours as part of the CPE requirements for the renewal of their registration. 

7.          ACRA will conduct sample checks on the public accountants’ compliance with the CPE requirements. Enforcement actions (including disallowing the renewal of registration) will be taken against public accountants who have made false declarations.  

8.          Please refer to the publications available under the Download section at this link for the key observations arising from the past compliance checks and the clarification and guidance relating to CPE compliance. Application for Exemption from CPE Requirements 

Application for Exemption from CPE Requirements

9.          Application for exemption from the CPE requirements should be submitted via BizFile+ before the renewal exercise ends on 31 December 2022. Public accountants who have applied for exemption from CPE requirements should wait for the outcome before submitting their PA renewal applications. 

10.       Public accountants are required to provide the following when applying for exemption from CPE requirements: 

a.          the duly completed template (17.4KB, XLXS) providing details of their CPE shortfall such as the extent of the shortfall and the CPE category to which the shortfall relates;

b.          detailed reasons for not meeting the CPE requirements;

c.          details of CPE hours acquired in 2022, in the format set out in Appendix IV of the CPE Syllabus  (225KB, PDF);  

d.          evidence of participation of structured CPE hours acquired in 2022; and

e.          details of courses the public accountant has signed up to make up for the CPE shortfall. 

Please note that incomplete applications will not be processed.  

11.       If the application for exemption is approved, the PAOC may require the public accountant to make up for the CPE shortfall and acquire additional CPE hours within a certain timeframe as a condition for allowing the public accountant to renew his certificate of registration. If the application for exemption is rejected, the public accountant will have to cease practising as a public accountant after his certificate of registration expires on 31 December 2022. 

Renewal Fee 

12.       The fees payable for 2023 PA Renewal are as follows: 

a.          A fixed sum of $600; and

b.          A variable sum as set out in the table below:  

Number of listed corporations audited by the accounting entity from 1 January to 31 December 2022
Fees payable by the public accountant in respect of each accounting entity in which he is practising as at 1 January 2023 
 0  $150
 1-10  $250
11-100  $650
 >200   $1050

Public Accounting Entity in which the Public Accountant is practising

13.       Public accountants should ensure that the relevant particulars of the entities in which they are practising as a partner or director or employee are kept up to date.  Public accountants should notify the Registrar of Public Accountants of changes in the position they are holding in the entities by filing a change in particulars of the entities via BizFile+ prior to applying for renewal.  

14.       Under the “Public Accounting Entity in which the Public Accountant is practising” section, public accountants are required to indicate the number of clients which they and the entities in which they are practising have audited during the year. 

15.       For the purpose of the renewal application, public accountants declaring the number for “Clients which are public listed entities on the Singapore Exchange (SGX)” should cover the period from 1 January to 31 December 2022.  For the remaining categories of clients, the number declared can be based on the period from 1 January 2022 up to the date of the renewal application submitted in December 2022.  

16.       Public accountants submitting their applications for renewal via BizFile+ should avoid launching multiple login windows or tabs concurrently, to prevent any conflict in the transactions that they are submitting through the BizFile+ portal. 

Important Timeline 

17.       The timelines for the 2023 PA renewal are as follows:  

 Date  Activity
 1 Dec 2022 to 31 Dec 2022  Public accountants to submit renewal applications via BizFile+
 1 Jan 2023 to 31 Jan 2023  Public accountants who fail to file the renewal applications by 31 Dec 2022 may apply for extension of time via BizFile+ and submit their renewal applications in the same transaction.
 1 Feb 2023  Public accountants who fail to file their renewal applications by 31 Jan 2023 will be notified of the removal of their names and particulars from the Register of Public Accountants (Register). 
 1 Feb 2023 to 21 Feb 2023 Public accountants whose names and particulars have been removed from the Register may apply via BizFile+ to be reinstated to the Register.   

More details

18.       Please refer to the following links for more details:

19.       If you require further clarification, please send your enquiries through our feedback form.

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