OUR THOUGHTS ON:

Tracking the Implementation of International Standards

IFRS|International

By Todd Lucas

The IFRS Foundation is undertaking an initiative to document and track how the various countries adopting International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) are progressing. The IFRS Foundation recently completed the first phase of the initiative, which includes assessment of for all G20 countries as well as 46 other countries (including the United States) that responded to the Foundation’s survey of national and regional governing agencies with responsibility for accounting standards within their country.

Overall observations from the survey were categorized as follows:

• Commitment to a single set of global accounting standards
• Commitment to IFRS
• Adoption of IFRS
• Scope of use of IFRS
• Few modifications
• Auditor’s report
• IFRS for SMEs

Of the 66 countries included in the first phase, 95% publicly support IFRS as the single set of financial reporting standards suitable for global application. Additionally, almost 80% have already required all or nearly all publicly traded companies to adopt IFRS.

For countries that have already adopted IFRS, most of have done so with very few modifications. Most of the changes are considered temporary and are associated with standards where International Accounting Standards Board is already working on updates.

Michel Prada, Chairman of the IFRS Foundation trustees, said, “Although different countries are at different stages along the path to IFRS adoption, the direction of travel is clear and the momentum is unstoppable.”

A second phase is of the initiative is under way with the goal of providing profiles for most countries by the end of 2013.

The country profiles are available at www.ifrs.org.

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