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FAQ - IBFD Advanced Professional Certificate in International Taxation

General

What is the IBFD Advanced Professional Certificate in International Taxation (APCIT)?

The IBFD Advanced Professional Certificate in International Taxation is a structured training programme from IBFD that grants a unique qualification for tax professionals who wish to be recognized as experts in international taxation. Participants who meet the requisite standards at the end of the programme will be awarded the certificate by IBFD.

What will I learn in the programme?

The programme is available only in online format, and consists of 3 online courses, 15 recorded webinars, a live webinar, 2 case study-based assignments and the final assessment.

In terms of tax topics, the programme covers tax treaties (OECD/UN Model, 2017 Updates and OECD MLI), international tax planning (BEPS, EU ATAD and all new developments) and transfer pricing (post-BEPS and 2017 OECD Transfer Pricing Guidelines).

After registration, participants will receive access to all on-demand webinars and online courses that are part of the curriculum. The programme has to be completed in 6 months, but access to the materials is available for 12 months.

The programme is divided into three phases, followed by the final assessment. 

Phase 1: Fundamentals (basic level) consists of three online courses and one case study-based assignment. This phase will develop the core international tax skills of participants. It will cover the basics of tax treaties, tax planning techniques and the 2017 OECD TPG. Participants will be introduced to international taxation and given a solid foundation on which to build their career. The case study will help students put into practice what they have learned from the online courses.

Phase 2: Current issues (intermediate level) consists of 15 recorded webinars and 1 case study-based assignment. This phase will cover the most pressing issues of international taxation, such as the 2017 update to the OECD and UN Model; OECD MLI; tax planning concerning permanent establishments; substance requirements; transfer pricing involving financing, business restructuring, services and IP issues; EU ATAD; the new EU mandatory disclosure rules; and tax treaty issues related to passive income, the indirect transfer of assets, and holding and IP companies. The case study will help participants put into practice what they have learned from the webinars.

Phase 3: Practical considerations (advanced level) consists of one live webinar. This phase will focus on the practical application of the curriculum studied over the course of the programme. Participants will receive a complex assignment they need to work on over an extended period.

Final assessment: case study-based assignment.

What are the skills I will obtain after following the Certificate programme?

After following the certificate programme, a tax professional will be able to:

  • meaningfully contribute to a company’s international tax strategy
  • translate a global or regional tax strategy into domestic jurisdictions where business is conducted
  • undertake tax planning responsibilities in a wider geographical area and propose tax-effective business structures and operations
  • identify, address and control tax and transfer pricing risks arising from selected cross-border transactions
  • understand the implications of recent international tax developments in the post-BEPS era
  • prepare impact assessments and ensure that a business’s corporate structure, position and transactions are BEPS proof
  • proactively support the business functions and business line managers from a tax and transfer pricing point of view, and assist CFOs, directors, accountants and other peers in respect to the tax implications of business structures and transactions 
What are the benefits for companies or organizations who sign their employees up for this programme?

The IBFD certificate programme is a time and cost-effective solution for organizations that wish to equip their employees with expertise in international taxation from a reputable international organization.

After following this programme, the employee(s) will acquire the skills to effectively manage the organization’s operations in international taxation, as well as to understand and translate the latest developments into their daily tax management.

This certificate programme guarantees the organization that the employee(s) will gain the required knowledge upon completion, as participants must meet the requisite study standards, including an assessment at the end of the study programme.

What kinds of study materials will I be able to access?

Participants will receive access to all webinars and online courses that are part of the curriculum, and also to any additional reading materials and case study assignments along with model answers.

How can I obtain the IBFD certificate at the end of the programme?

To receive the IBFD certificate, you need to follow 80% of the programme, submit the case study-based assignments as well as successfully pass the final assessment (or the resit). If you fail the exam and the resit, you will need to repurchase the programme and successfully complete it again to obtain the certificate.

How does the certificate compare with a professional affiliation (e.g. ACCA)?

The certificate is not the same as a professional affiliation and thus does not regulate the participants’ professional conduct. The certificate is an acknowledgement from IBFD that the holder has completed a rigorous learning programme in international tax, has passed the assessment and has met the requisite standards as an expert in this field.

How does the certificate compare with a university qualification (e.g. LLM)?

In contrast with academic qualifications, the certificate provides a business-driven, professional qualification. The programme is designed for busy tax professionals who may not have the time to commit to a full-time LLM programme at a university, but they still wish to improve their skill set in international taxation and their career prospects in the tax world.

Prerequisites

Who will benefit from the IBFD Advanced Professional Certificate in International Taxation?

The programme is suitable for busy professionals who wish to become recognized experts in international taxation and gain a competitive edge in the job market.

What sort of qualification do I need in order to register for the programme?

The entry requirements are the following:

  • Demonstrated education in tax, international tax, finance, economics, law, accounting or any relevant, related field
  • At least 2 years of relevant work experience in tax or fiscal affairs in either the private or governmental sector
How do I find out more information about whether I am suitable for the programme?

Participants can contact us to request more information regarding their individual case. IBFD’s international tax experts involved in the certificate programme will be available to provide further guidance and information.

Commitment and time frame

When can I register for the programme?

You can register for the programme here:

IBFD Advanced Professional Certificate in International Taxation

When exactly does the programme start?

We provide two entry dates (classes) a year: March and October. Both classes will run for 6 months. Start dates of the programme are fixed and cannot be deferred.

How much time do I have to complete the programme?

The programme must be completed in 6 months. Please note that the webinars and the online courses will still be accessible for another 6-month period after the end of the programme.

Do I have to do all three phases of the programme within the 6-month period?

Yes, the different phases cannot be separated and must be taken at once.

How much time do I need to commit to successfully complete the programme within the allocated time frame?

The amount of time required to complete the programme depends on the experience of the participant. On average, you need to dedicate approximately 2 hours a week to finish the programme within the allocated time frame.

Assessments and accreditation

Why are assessments incorporated into the programme?

An assessment is incorporated at the end of the programme to ensure that only participants who meet the requisite standards will be awarded the certificate.

How many assessments are there in the programme?

There is one online, case study-based assessment at the end of the programme. Participants have to complete at least 80% of the programme to have access to the final assessment.

What are the assessment requirements?

The final assessment consists of a practical, real-life case study. Participants are expected to complete the final assessment online in 2 hours. In this time, participants have to write a short essay to illustrate their understanding of the issues at stake. Participants who achieve an average grade of at least 50% will be awarded the certificate.

When can I take the final assessment?

The final assessment will be administered online on a specific day after completion of the third phase.

Who will be marking the final assessment?

IBFD international tax experts will be the assessors in this programme.

Can I take the final assessment earlier?

Dates for each component of the programme are fixed. Deferring the date of the assessment will not be possible.

Can I retake the assessment if I fail?

You can retake the final assessment once for free. If you fail the final assessment and the resit, you need to register again for the programme and successfully complete it to obtain the certificate.

What will be the content of the resit?

The resit will involve new questions in a new assessment.

Can I choose to do the programme without the assessment?

Participants are free to do the programme without the assessment. However, in this case participants will not be awarded the certificate.

Can I obtain CPE (continuing professional education) credits?

Subsets of the IBFD Advanced Professional Certificate in International Taxation programme are eligible for CPE points with many professional accrediting bodies (see the whole list here). For each online course and webinar, participants will receive a certificate of completion that includes the recommended CPE credits. Participants should submit this certificate and any other information required to their relevant professional bodies to obtain CPE credits.

Course fees and payment

How much does the programme cost?

For pricing information, see the course description:

IBFD Advanced Professional Certificate in International Taxation

What does the fee cover?

The fee covers the online courses, the webinars, the case study assignments, the final assessment and one resit for the final assessment.

When do I have to make the payment?

The fee is due at the time of registration, but before any material is accessed. You can only pay by credit card. Payment must be made in full at the time of registration; there is no option for instalments.

Will I get a refund if I withdraw from the programme without completing it?

The fees are due at the time of registration, and no refund will be given if participants choose to withdraw from the programme once it has already started. Participants are encouraged to commit to the 6-month time frame to complete the programme.

Can I transfer the registration to another person?

Since the certificate provides a personal qualification, a registered participant cannot be replaced by another person.

Can I postpone my registration to another class of the certificate programme?

Registration to a class or class attendance cannot be postponed or pushed forward to another class.

Maintenance of the certificate

For how long will the certificate remain valid?

The certificate is awarded with a date of completion. As such, the value of the certificate may diminish over time.

Cancellation policy

Can I cancel the programme after payment?

A registration can be cancelled without any penalty within 1 month following the registration, but before any materials are accessed. After that, in the case of a cancellation, the full price must be paid.

Copyright and disclaimer

Copyright

All course materials of IBFD International Tax Training, IBFD Asia Sdn. Bhd. and IBFD (Beijing) International Taxation Consulting Co. Ltd. are copyright protected, and it is not permitted to record, reproduce or distribute any part of the courses or related materials.

Disclaimer

The information supplied during courses provided by IBFD International Tax Training, IBFD Asia Sdn. Bhd. and IBFD (Beijing) International Taxation Consulting Co. Ltd. is not intended to be advice on any particular matter. IBFD International Tax Training, IBFD Asia Sdn. Bhd. and IBFD (Beijing) International Taxation Consulting Co. Ltd. will not be liable for any direct or consequential damages arising from the use of such information or from any decision based thereon.

For technical assistance, please contact IBFD Customer Support. For questions regarding the content, please contact the IBFD Online Training team.