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  • National Accounting Standard Setter (No Website): Cuban Accounting Standards Committee (Comité de Normas Cubanas de Contabilidad)

Financial Reporting Framework in Cuba

The information below is based on an essay titled La Regulacion Contable cubana en el periodo revolucionario: Apuntes para una historia (PDF 327k) written by Professor Abel Sarduy Quintanilla (and others) from the Central University 'Marta Abreu' (Universidad Central 'Marta Abreu'). Here is the Web Link to the Essay.

The Cuban accounting framework has been through three different stages:

First Stage: 1959 to 1976

The first stage was from 1959 (Revolution) to 1976, when the 'Direction and Planning System for the Economy' - Sistema de Direccion y Planificacion de la Economía (SDPE) - was implemented. It was characterised by the implementation of several accounting systems derived from the enormous transformations that occurred in the political, economic, and social environment in that period of time.

Second Stage: 1976 to 1993

The second stage was from 1976 to 1993. The first accounting framework in this stage was called 'National Accounting System' (Sistema Nacional de Contabilidad), which was in force from 1976 to 1986. On 1 January 1987, it was replaced with a new 'National Accounting System', which remained in force from 1987 to 1992. These two systems were extremely rigid, with a mandatory chart of accounts, prescribed format for financial statements, and accounting policies. Both systems adopted the concepts and terminology of the accounting system of the Soviet Union.

Third Stage: 1993 to the Present

The third stage is from 1993 to the present. It has had three different accounting systems:

  • In 1993, the 'National Accounting System' that had been adopted in 1987 was amended by the 'General Standards of Accounting' (Normas Generales de Contabilidad, or NGC). Those standards were in force from 1993 to 1996. They eliminated the rigidity of the previous system by allowing entities to adopt a more flexible framework to reflect their specific conditions. It also provided for more flexible financial reporting to entities' foreign partners.
  • In 1997, the government put in place new 'General Standards of Accounting' that modified some aspects of the 1993 standards. Specifically the new standards were established in four components:
    1. General Accepted Accounting Principles, mandatory for every company in the country, both public and private;
    2. Standards of Measurement and Disclosures, mandatory for every company in the country, both public and private;
    3. Set of Accounts, mandatory for public companies, optional for private companies; and
    4. Financial Statements, mandatory for every company in the country, both public and private. However, the standards for financial statements specify different financial statement formats for public and private companies.
    Items a, b, and d also existed in the prior accounting systems but were modified by the 1997 system. Item c did not exist previously.
  • In January 2006, the Cuban government issued through the Cuban Accounting Standards Committee (Comité de Normas Cubanas de Contabilidad) the Cuban Financial Information Standards (Normas Cubanas de Informacion Financiera, or NCIF). The NCIF are composed of eight sections:
    1. Background and general information, including a preface to the NCIF, the purpose of the Cuban Accounting Standard Committee, and the conceptual framework related to the preparation and presentation of the financial statements.
    2. Cuban Accounting Standards, including measurement and disclosure standards, general standards, specific standards, and accounting interpretations.
    3. Standards relating to disclosure of forecasted activity (budget).
    4. Account descriptions.
    5. Deals with governmental accounting.
    6. Deals with governmental accounting.
    7. Cuban standards for cost accounting.
    8. Glossary.
    The measurement and disclosure standards and general standards in Section 2 are generally harmonised with International Financial Reporting Standards. The specific standards in Section 2 address economic issues not covered by the general standards that are unique to the local economic activity. Harmonisation of the Cuban Accounting Standards (Section 2) wss based on the policy of the United Nations that national accounting standards should harmonise with IFRSs. In summary, currently Cuba is working to harmonise its accounting standards with IFRSs.


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