International administration of the Uniform CPA Examination will be offered during the month of August in Japan, Bahrain, Kuwait, Lebanon, and the United Arab Emirates, the American Institute of CPAs, the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy and Prometric announced on Tuesday.
The U.S. CPA exam is being offered internationally for the first time as a service to foreign nationals in response to rapidly escalating international demand for U.S. CPA licensure. In 2010, more than 10,000 international candidates traveled to the U.S. to take the U.S. CPA exam, a 22 percent increase from 2009. Nearly one-third of international candidates came from Japan.
“We are very pleased to be able to offer this program in Japan and several countries in the Middle East,” said AICPA vice president for examinations and continuing professional education Craig Mills. “We believe the international administrations will provide additional opportunities for individuals who want to become U.S. CPAs. As we gain experience in international administrations, we are looking forward to expanding the program to other countries where there is interest.”
The international exam, which will be offered in English, is the same as the U.S. exam administered by the AICPA, NASBA and Prometric in the United States. Future testing months during which the exam will be administered in Japan and the Middle East will be November 2011 and February, May 2012. Licensure requirements for international candidates are the same as for U.S. CPA candidates. Along with passing the Uniform CPA Examination, international candidates must meet educational and experience requirements as mandated by U.S. state boards of accountancy.
"It makes excellent sense to extend the benefits of the U.S. state-based CPA examination and licensure processes to an international audience,” NASBA executive vice president and COO Ken L. Bishop. “We’re looking forward to implementing international CPA Examination administrations so that we may bring the examination to candidates who would like an opportunity to qualify as U.S. CPAs."
In the United States, state boards have governmental legal authority to award the U.S. CPA license. Registration for the international exam will begin on May 1, and applications may be made through certain U.S. state boards of accountancy offering eligibility for international candidates. A list of participating state boards and information about fees will be posted on the NASBA Web site in April at www.nasba.org.
Testing in the new international locations will be open to citizens and long-term residents of the countries in which the exam is being administered. In the Middle East, citizens of Egypt, Jordan, Oman, Qatar and Saudi Arabia may take the exam in one of the Middle East locations. U.S. citizens living abroad are eligible to test at any location.
The organizations are hoping that recent turmoil in the Middle East will not affect the timing of the exams. “The exam, regardless of where it’s administered, provides opportunities for personal growth and contributes to economic prosperity,” Mills said. “We continue to plan for an August administration in the Middle East and are hopeful that the local conditions will allow us to provide this service to the citizens of the region.”
Initially the exam will be offered internationally during a one-month testing window per calendar-year quarter. An international testing FAQ sheet is available at the AICPA Uniform CPA Examination Web site at www.aicpa.org/cpa-exam.
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