IPSASB calls for comments on public sector conceptual framework

  • IPSASB (International Public Sector Accounting Standards Board) (mid gray) Image

16 Dec, 2010

The International Public Sector Accounting Standards Board (IPSASB) has released for comment an exposure draft (ED) and two Consultation Papers related to its project to develop a Conceptual Framework for the general purpose financial reporting of public sector entities:

  • Conceptual Framework Exposure Draft 1 (CF-ED1) Conceptual Framework for General Purpose Financial Reporting by Public Sector Entities: Role, Authority, and Scope; Objectives and Users; Qualitative Characteristics; and Reporting Entity proposes that the objectives of financial reporting should be to provide information for accountability and decision-making purposes and should extend beyond the traditional financial statements to include more comprehensive financial and non-financial information
  • Consultation Paper Elements and Recognition in Financial Statements identifies alternative asset and liability-led and revenue and expense-led approaches to financial statements and considers the key characteristics of assets, liabilities, revenue and expenses
  • Consultation Paper Measurement of Assets and Liabilities in Financial Statements considers the measurement bases that may be appropriate for the elements that are recognised in financial statements, discussing historical cost, market value, replacement cost and deprival value.

Many of the IPSASs currently on issue are based on IFRSs to the extent that the requirements of those IFRSs are relevant to the public sector. However, development of the IPSASB's Conceptual Framework is not an IFRS convergence project, and the purpose of the IPSASB's project is not to interpret the application of the IASB Framework to the public sector.

The development of a conceptual framework for public sector accounting standards is an important step towards their widespread adoption in various jurisdictions and may see some countries move to base public sector, and possibly not-for-profit, accounting standards on IPSASs (for instance, the New Zealand Accounting Standards Review Board is currently considering the viability of adopting IPSASs in New Zealand).

Comments on the documents are requested by 15 June 2011. Click for IPSASB press release (link to IFAC website).

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