Extractive activities — Comprehensive project


Extractive activities are the exploration for and discovery of minerals, oil and natural gas deposits, developing those deposits and extracting the minerals, oil and natural gas. Extractive activities are excluded from the scope of several otherwise relevant standards, and thus there is no specific guidance. This has resulted in diversity in accounting practice.

This project was carried over from the IASC. The IASC had a project on 'extractive industries', led by an IASC Steering Committee on Extractive Industries, which considered a broad range of issues including reserves and resources estimation, historical and valuation based concepts of measurement of resources related assets, treatment of removal and restoration costs, impairment, revenue, inventories and arrangements to share risks and costs.

The IASB undertook a short-term project on the accounting for exploration and evaluation expenditures, designed to make limited improvements to accounting practices without requiring major changes that might be reversed in any comprehensive project on extractive activities. This short-term project led to the issue of IFRS 6 Exploration for and Evaluation of Mineral Resources in December 2004.

In addition to these steps, a project team of national standard-setters from Australia, Canada, Norway and South Africa has undertaken a research project on extractive activities. This project has had a narrower focus, dealing with the nature of the unique assets arising in the extractive process (rights and access to, and information about, possible mineral or oil and gas resources).


Current status of the project

The IASB published a discussion paper prepared by the national standard-setters project team in April 2010 and received an analysis of the comments received in October 2010.

In December 2012, the IASB deactivated the project. However, in September 2019, the IASB reactivated it and discussed an overview of how changes to IFRSs and other documents, and other developments since the discussion paper was published may affect the issues and conclusions in the discussion paper.


Project milestones

Date Development Comments
30 November 2000 Summary of Issues: Extractive Industries published by IASC Comment deadline 30 June 2001
10 August 2009 Staff draft of Discussion Paper Extractive Activities released Comments not requested
6 April 2010 Discussion Paper DP/2010/1 Extractive Activities published Comment deadline 30 July 2010
December 2012 Project discontinued in favour of a broader intangible assets project
September 2019 Project reactivated

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