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Definition of a business

Date recorded:

Following the post-implementation review (“PIR”) of IFRS 3, several projects related to IFRS 3 were added to IASB’s research agenda. At their joint meeting in September, the IASB and FASB discussed their respective projects related to their Business Combinations Standards, and how the boards could work together on these projects. At this meeting, the IASB started its discussions of two of these projects: (1) definition of a business and (2) goodwill and impairment.

Definition of a business (Agenda Paper 13)

The purpose of this session was for the IASB to agree whether and how to amend IFRS 3 and to decide how to proceed. The FASB also has a project on this topic, and plans to issue an exposure draft soon. The staff recommended that the IASB should propose changes to IFRS 3 that are the same as the amendments proposed by the FASB, and issue an exposure draft rather than a discussion paper. The aim of the project is not to develop new or substantially amended concepts, but to improve the drafting of the existing definition of a business and the related application guidance.

IASB Discussion

After a very brief discussion where a few IASB members clarified their understanding of several points, all IASB members agreed with the staff recommendations to propose changes to IFRS 3 that are the same as the amendments proposed by the FASB, and to issue an Exposure Draft rather than a Discussion Paper.

One Board member asked if these proposals would address the matters discussed by the IFRS Interpretations Committee. The Board agreed that it would be helpful to keep the Committee informed of its decisions.

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