The reference to 'equivalence' relates to a study currently underway within the European Commission to assess whether US GAAP, Canadian GAAP, and/or Japanese GAAP are 'equivalent' to IFRSs and, therefore, should be allowed for non-European companies in European capital markets. An excerpt from Commissioner McCreevy's press release:
I very much welcome the constructive approach the SEC is taking to moving these critical issues forward. We will work closely together to promote the closer alignment of IFRS and US GAAP and towards the elimination of US GAAP reconciliation requirements for foreign private issuers. These are major steps towards high-quality global accounting standards, which the European Union strongly supports. Clearly there is much to do all round, but the bandwagon has now started. International accounting standard setters, preparers, issuers, auditors and regulators must now accelerate their efforts to seize this unique opportunity. They must set clear goals and deliver the necessary convergence, consistency and enforcement required. I will be pressing all concerned in Europe to play their part.