The growth of international business activity in Atlanta is requiring certified public accountants to become more familiar with international accounting and tax procedures, according to Bo Jackson, chairman of the 1998 International Business Conference of the Georgia Society of CPA’s.

      The second annual conference held Sept . 30 at the Cobb Galleria focused on issues such as setting up overseas subsidiaries, the U.S. taxation of foreign nationals working here, compensation and payroll for international assignments and cross cultural communications.

      Mr. Jackson, who is a member of the local CPA firm The Jackson Group, told GlobalFax during an interview at the conference that the Society’s members, who are in-house accountants for companies, especially larger firms, already have had to deal with international issues.

       More surprisingly, he added that accountants who provide services to small- to medium-sized companies also have found that their clients are more active internationally.

      Citing a nationwide grassroots survey by the New York-based American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA), the CPA’s leading professional association, Mr. Jackson said the local developments are similar to those that have been found throughout the country.

      We’re seeing more CPAs specializing in these areas and that’s something that we didn’t see four or five years ago, he added.  The role of CPAs also is changing.  We are now becoming more information managers and are more involved in business planning and consulting on behalf of our clients.

      There were some 65 attendees at this year’s international business conference.  Mr. Jackson said that he expects twice the number at next year’s conference which will be presented by the society and the Georgia Department of Industry, Trade and Tourism and the International Law Section of the State Bar of Georgia.

      Mr. Jackson may be reached by calling (770) 451-1720.  The AICPA may be reached by calling (212) 596-6200; fax, (212) 596-6213.