Agenda Consultation — Overview

Date recorded:


In this meeting, the staff updated the IASB on the feedback on the IASB’s Request for Views 2015 Agenda Consultation (the ‘RfV’). There was an overview session, several sessions on individual research projects and a wrap up session.

Agenda Paper 24B (supported by papers 24C and 24D)

In this overview session, the staff presented how the responses received to the RfV are likely to affect the Board’s future work plan.

Most respondents agreed with the five main areas of technical activities identified in the RfV:

  1. research activities;
  2. Standards-level projects;
  3. the Conceptual Framework;
  4. disclosure initiative; and
  5. maintenance and implementation support.

Most respondents thought that the completion of the projects on leases (now completed) and insurance should have very high priority. Furthermore, the Board should focus on maintenance and implementation activities and that it is important that IFRS continue to be principles-based. Also, the disclosure initiative was highly important to most respondents. Some respondents suggested the Board widen its activities to include wider corporate reporting.

As a result, the work plan would have to be rebalanced away from major Standards-level projects to maintenance and implementation of Standards.

As regards the research programme, respondents are unclear what the strategy, objectives and processes of the research programme are, how the Board adds projects to its research programme and how the research programme interacts with Standards-level projects and with related work    on maintenance and implementation projects. Views were mixed about the number of research projects in progress.

The Board will not be asked to make any decisions in this meeting.

Board discussion

The first part of the discussion focused on the ranking by respondents of individual research projects into high, medium or low priority.  One Board member believed that ranking a research project low priority actually meant that the respondents did not want the Board to pursue that project.

Respondents gave the disclosure initiative by far the highest priority with a block of goodwill, debt/equity and primary financial statements following in the second line. To many Board members this ranking was not surprising. However, a Board member cautioned against colour coding, i.e. prioritising projects by popularity. To him, accounting for extractive activities was a high priority project although ranked low by many respondents. A fellow Board member agreed and said it was the same for pollutant pricing mechanisms. The Chairman agreed with both the Board members and said that both projects were extremely important although ranked low.

One Board member strongly urged the Board to seek sound conceptual bases for the issues instead of trying to fix them quickly. Another Board member suggested focusing on user views.

Asked about the next step with regards to the IFRS Advisory Council, the Senior Technical Manager responsible for the staff papers replied that they would provide the Council with a proposed work plan and seek their feedback. When asked about new topics identified by constituents, she replied that there would be a separate session about those at this IASB meeting.

As regards the investor feedback, investors called for more effective disclosures and strong principles. They also would like to see more cohesiveness between the components of financial statements.

One Board member said that some investors were concerned about a large part of the corporate value not being recognised on the balance sheet, e.g. internally-generated intangible assets. The Principal for Investor Liaison replied that this discussion was also linked to the post-implementation review of IFRS 3 and the issues around extractive activities.

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