THE British-based Chartered Institute of Management Accountants is promoting management accounting in China to overcome differences in the accounting practices of China and the West. Institute president Allan McNab said: 'The fundamental difference will be the differences in concepts of accounting, and that really results from the fact that China has been a planned economy. Profit was not the bottom line.' He said there was a great need for promoting management accounting in China because many of the institute's Hong Kong members now worked on the mainland. 'European members of our institute are beginning to work in China in joint ventures with large companies,' he said. Mr McNab said China's state-owned enterprises had a similar concept of Western management accounting, but there were differences. Management accounting, designed to aid decision making and planning, makes use of financial accounting records. The institute has liaison offices in Shanghai and Guangzhou and plans one for Beijing. The liaison offices, supported by the chambers of commerce in Shanghai and Guangzhou, would provide training and support to members and explain Chinese accounting practices. International affairs director Helen Brand said it had few mainland members because the educational structure was inadequate. She said management accounting was taught in China but practices did not meet institute requirements, adding: 'We are not interested in recruitment for recruitment's sake.'