Report recommends enhanced governance arrangements for IPSAS

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03 Mar, 2015

The IPSASB Governance Review Group has published it's final recommendations on the future governance of the IPSASB. The Review Group concludes that the International Public Sector Accounting Standards Board (IPSASB) should continue to operate under the auspices of the International Federation of Accountants (IFAC). At the same time, however, the group recommends that a new governance body, the Public Interest Committee, should be established to ensure that the public interest is served by the standard-setting activities of the IPSASB.

The final report is the result of a public consultation that was conducted from 17 January to 30 April 2014 and discussions held at the Review Group's meetings on 31 May 2013 and 22 September 2014. Among the questions asked in the consultation paper was whether the needed strengthening of the monitoring and oversight of the IPSASB would best be served by moving it under the auspices of the IFRS Foundation, whether it should be established as a standard-setter in its own right or whether the IPSASB could continue to work under the auspices of the IFAC if the governance arrangements were enhanced.

The Review Group's final report contains the following recommendations:

  • The IPSASB should continue to operate under the auspices of the IFAC.
  • A new governance body (Public Interest Committee) should be established to ensure that the public interest is served by the standard-setting activities of the IPSASB.
  • The Committee should be independent from IFAC and distinct from the existing governance bodies overseeing the IFAC's private sector standard-setting activities.
  • The Committee would review and advise the IFAC and the IPSASB on the terms of reference, the nomination and appointment of members, and the procedures for formulating the strategy and work plan and development of IPSAS of the IPSASB.
  • The Committee should not have a direct role in the development, adoption, and implementation of accounting standards.
  • The Committee should conduct a first review of the terms of reference, nomination procedures, and standard-setting arrangements no later than the first semester of 2015.
  • The Committee should meet at least annually thereafter to review progress against the recommendations following from their review.
  • The initial membership of the Committee should include individuals with expertise in public sector financial reporting and an interest in promoting high-quality and internationally comparable financial information. Members should not be compensated and serve for a limited period (not longer than three years).
  • The functioning of the Committee should be defined in public Terms of Reference.
  • The Committee will receive reports from the IFAC and the IPSASB regarding procedures and progress against goals.
  • The IFAC should establish a separate Consultative Advisory Group (CAG) for the IPSASB.
  • A further public consultation on the improvements to the IPSASB's governance arrangements should be undertaken no later than 2020.

Please click for access to the full report on the IFAC website. It also contains an appendix with suggested Terms of Reference for the Public Interest Committee.

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