Education Session: Introduction to International Valuation Standards

Date recorded:

This was an educational session, and no decisions were made.

Representatives of the International Valuation Standards Committee (IVSC) provided some background information about the organisation and then highlighted the following key issues:

  • IVSC standards are intended to apply internationally. To date, members of the IVSC have operated under the members' code which requires compliance with these standards except where local legislation may require something different. In those cases, members would take into account the local requirements but ensuring that they comply with the overall principles of the IVSC standards. The IVSC does not have the authority or ability to enforce its standards but does not permit members to claim compliance with IVSC standards where they have not complied with all of them.
  • The point was made about the growing influence of the IVSC's standards which initially dealt with property, plant, and equipment and had now expanded to other types of assets including intangibles.
  • The IVSC made the point to the IASB, of the importance of establishing a clear and unambiguous concept of fair value as it applies to all types of assets (and businesses) from which valuation experts can work. To date, the inconsistent guidance within specific IFRS standards had resulted in confusion amongst preparers and users. Some of the inconsistencies have resulted from not knowing whether to apply the going concern assumption, or not, and whether fair value is based on the 'highest and best use' concept which takes into account alternative uses of the same asset.

The IASB indicated that the intention of fair value is to base that measurement on highest and best use taking into account all alternative uses, but acknowledged that IFRSs are not always clear in this regard. In addition, the IASB indicated that fair value should always reflect market assumptions.

The Board discussed the IVSC's overall views on the FASB Fair Value Measurement proposals (the IVSC made it clear that they had not yet had the opportunity to study the FASB's latest position following the redeliberations phase). IVSC indicated its broad support for the FASB's conclusions and pointed out the differences with the current IFRS literature that would remain if the IASB did not take on a similar project.

The IVSC pointed out that, from experience, users of IFRS literature did not believe that the IAS 39 fair value guidance was applicable to other areas. The IASB noted that the IAS 39 fair value guidance was its latest position on fair value measurement and should ideally be applicable to all fair value measurements, highlighting the need to expedite its fair value measurement project that would apply to all fair value measurements.

The Board asked the IVSC to input as soon as possible its views on the latest FASB positions in order for them to be considered in finalising the FASB document. This would allow the IASB to work from a base that is as comprehensive as possible. In addition, the IASB asked to IVSC to consider and inform the IASB of any inconsistencies within IFRS that could be corrected via the IASB's technical corrections policy particularly where the IFRS did not state the IASB's intentions with respect to fair values.

The IASB raised the issue of emerging economies where fair value measurement is considered problematic. The IVSC representatives indicated to the IASB the existence of a white paper included as part of its published standards dealing with emerging economies and setting out best practices.

In concluding, the IASB noted the appreciation expressed by the FASB for the IVSC's involvement in their fair value project. Both the IVSC and the IASB expressed their wish to work closely in the future in developing both the IVSC's standards and IFRS as global standards.

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