Somerset tax expert Paul Aplin, who is half-way through a year as national president of the ICAEW (Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales), has had time to gather two prestigious awards during official duties that have recently taken him to Australia, Singapore, Malaysia, Botswana, Hong Kong, Dubai, Mauritius and Cyprus.
He has just been awarded the Geneva Group International (GGI) International Excellency Award for Exceptional Services, presented at Chartered Accountants Hall in London by GGI’s Global Chief Executive Officer Michael Reiss von Filski (photo shows Michael Reiss von Filski on the left with Paul Aplin). GGI, based in Switzerland, is an international alliance of professional firms with over 800 offices worldwide. Past recipients of the award include H.E. Benita Ferrero-Waldner, formerly Austria’s Secretary of State and Minister of Foreign Affairs and Dr Włodzimierz Cimoszewicz, former Prime Minister of the Republic of Poland.
Paul Aplin, who is a tax partner with AC Mole & Sons based in Taunton and the first ICAEW president from the South West in 138 years, also features for the sixth year running on the Accountancy Age Financial Power List of people who influence tax and financial policy in the UK, which has just been announced.
He says: “It has been an amazing few months. Technology has made it possible to keep on top of the day job back in Taunton, by keeping in touch with clients via Skype and email and reading my scanned post every morning, whether I have been in London, Canberra or Singapore. I even gave a business breakfast analysis of the 2018 Budget to an audience at Taunton Racecourse by video link from Sydney.
“Talking with business leaders around the world has given me a new perspective on the way the UK is seen and on the task ahead of us in the post-Brexit world. It has reinforced my view that we need to invest more in training and more in technology to reinforce the UK’s skills-base and boost productivity.”
No stranger to plaudits, Paul Aplin was named Tax Personality of the Year in the 2007 UK Tax Awards for the part he played in persuading the government to reverse its decision to shorten the tax return filing deadline. In 2009 he was awarded an OBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list for public service and services to the accountancy profession. In the 2013 British Accountancy Awards he received the Outstanding Industry Contribution Award. He received an award from HMRC at 11 Downing Street to mark his contribution to improving tax administration.
Away from the office he is a keen hill walker, climber and photographer. At home on the Somerset Levels he and his wife Sharon keep ducks and enjoy walking their border collie.
You can read more about Paul’s experience and reflections as ICAEW president on the Moorgate Place blog on the ICAEW website and on Twitter @PaulAplinOnTax.