Reciprocity Between ICAI and IMA

If a person is a member of the ICAI (Institute of Chartered Accountants of India), he or she can apply for the CMA (US) membership provided the person has a valid ICAI certificate. Visit the IMA page here.

Conversely, if a person is a CMA, he or she can become a member of the ICAI. However, the person must take the CMA program outside of India. As long as the person takes the examination in test centres outside of India, he or she is fine. For more details, read this document.

IMA Member Profiles from India

According to the IMA Global Salary Survey of March 2016, IMA members of Indian origin have an average salary of USD35,800 per year and a total compensation of USD38,300 per year. The median of this survey is low, indicating that there are a few professionals who earn high salaries, and this increases the mean salary amount. Indian IMA members work for 48.6 hours a week on an average—the longest after the Netherlands.

(figures in USD) Mean


Salary 35,793


Total compensation 38,307



Considering the IMA members from Asia (mostly China, and to an extent India), 51% of them are CMAs, whereas the rest 49% are pursuing the certification. 91% of them have undergraduate degrees, and 31% of them have advanced degrees. The median age is 34, which makes them the youngest among all the members of the IMA. 52% of these members are in lower-level management, 14% in middle-level management, 19% in top-level management, and 14% in academia. Compared to the 40% in top-level management among their peers in the USA, it shows that Asian IMA members are younger and the CMA (US) establishment and spread are more recent in the Asian continent.

CMA v/s Non-CMA Salary in Asia

It is observed from the IMA Global Salary Survey that the salary and total compensation of CMAs in Asia are 62% more and 67% more, respectively compared to non-CMAs. This gap keeps on increasing year after year.

Furthermore, 68% of these CMAs testify that their negotiation power with employers is strengthened due to the certification. Also, 85% feel that the CMA (US) certification has significantly improved their chances of moving across all areas of business, thus bettering employment and pay prospects.

Becoming a CMA in India

Any person can pursue the CMA (US) certification from India itself, without having the need to travel or work in a foreign country. The eligibility criteria for the examination is simple—an undergraduate degree and a 2-year work experience, which can be gained from working in any part of the world, or India itself.