In the Czech Republic starting from 2002, all listed companies are permitted to prepare consolidated financial statements in conformity with IFRS. For certain listed companies – about a dozen that trade on the main board of the Prague Stock Exchange – IFRS financial statements are now required.

Most Austrian listed companies have already switched to IFRS

12 May 2003

For the past three years, the Vienna stock exchange has required all domestic and foreign companies listed on the A-Market and the Austrian Growth Market (AGM) to submit consolidated financial statements under either IFRS or US GAAP.

Other listed companies have been permitted to use IFRS or US GAAP or the Austrian commercial code. In their 2002 financial statements, nearly all listed Austrian companies have used IFRS. Only a few are now using US GAAP or the Austrian code. Starting in 2005, virtually all listed European companies, including Austrian companies, will be required to use IFRS.

EC will request modifications of IAS for use in Europe

09 May 2003

The European Commission has published its Internal Market Strategy 2003-2006 (PDF 220k), a ten-point plan to make the Internal Market work better.

Point 6 – improving conditions for business – states that the European Commission will request "appropriate modifications" to certain existing IAS before they will be endorsed for use in Europe. An EC Accounting Regulatory Committee has been established for that purpose:

"A recently adopted Regulation requires all EU-listed companies to prepare their consolidated accounts in accordance with International Accounting Standards (IAS) from 2005. This will bring transparency and greater comparability between the consolidated financial statements of EU listed companies, hence better capital allocation and possibly a reduction in the cost of capital. IAS are established by the International Accounting Standards Board, an independent international accounting standard-setting organisation. In order to ensure appropriate political oversight, the Regulation stipulates that IAS to be applied in the EU will also have to be endorsed into Community law. Existing IAS will be endorsed during 2003, provided that, for some of them, the appropriate modifications are made."

Convergence with IFRSs in Japan

09 May 2003

The Accounting Standards Board of Japan (ASBJ) has taken issue with the GAAP Convergence 2002 Report published by the International Forum for Accountancy Development because it classifies Japan among "countries which do not currently intend to converge with IAS".

The ASBJ is concerned that the report "might cause unnecessary confusion about our stance on convergence". In a statement distributed at the 24 April 2003 meeting of the IASB and its liaison standard-setters in London and posted on the ASBJ website, the ASBJ states that harmonisation with international standards is a primary concern and cites several of its recent standards as "similar" to IFRS. Click for the complete ASBJ Statement.

EU approves amended accounting directives

08 May 2003

The European Union's Council of Ministers has approved the amended EU accounting directives (the 4th and 7th Company Law Directives), bringing them into law.

The directives had been approved by the European Parliament in January 2003. The revised directives complement the IAS Regulation, adopted in June 2002, that requires all listed EU companies to use IFRS from 2005 onwards and allows member states to extend that requirement to all companies. The amended directives allow member states that choose not to apply IFRS to unlisted companies to move towards similar, high quality financial reporting, and could therefore affect up to five million companies. Among the changes:
  • All inconsistencies of the old directives and IFRS have been removed.
  • Companies' ability to keep liabilities off the balance sheet by using special purpose vehicles is restricted.
  • Disclosures about risks and uncertainties are required in annual reports.
  • Audit reports are made more consistent across the EU.
Click for EC Announcement (PDF 71k). Go to our Comprehensive Europe Pages.


Day added to IASB May meeting, agenda topics announced

08 May 2003

The IASB will meet at its offices in London from 20-23 May 2003 (starting one day earlier than previously announced).

The Board's preliminary agenda includes the following topics:
  • Business Combinations (Phase II)
  • Convergence
  • Financial Activities: Disclosure and Presentation
  • Financial Instruments (Amendments to IAS 32 and IAS 39)
  • Improvements to IFRS [removed from agenda]
  • Insurance Contracts (Phase II) [removed from agenda]
  • Insurance Contracts (Phase II)
  • Leases
  • The Income Statement (Reporting Performance)
  • Revenue Recognition
  • Share-Based Payment

There's more to convergence than just accounting standards

07 May 2003

In remarks at the Baruch College Conference on Financial Reporting, Jackson M.

Day, Acting Chief Accountant of the US SEC, spoke about international convergence (among other things). He noted that the processes for converging accounting standards are underway and "may be the easiest element of international convergence to make happen. It is the other elements of the global financial reporting infrastructure that need at least equal focus." Those elements include:
  • High quality auditing and auditing standards;
  • Consistent interpretation of accounting standards;
  • Effective oversight of standard setters and auditors;
  • Independence of auditors;
  • Ethics and competence on the part of preparers, auditors, and others;
  • Quality control within firms; and
  • Reviews and enforcement on financial reporting.
Click for the Full Text of Mr. Day's comments.

IFRS of growing importance for U.S. companies

07 May 2003

Deloitte & Touche (US) has published a booklet on International Financial Reporting Standards: Of Growing Importance for U.S.

Companies. The booklet discusses the factors that may influence the importance of IFRS in the United States, the need for global accounting standards, and the implications for organisations that adopt them. Click to (PDF 792k).

IFRS Musterkonzernabschluss (model financial statements in German)

06 May 2003

We have posted the German language version of the Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu model financial statements – (PDF 392k) – prepared in conformity with International Financial Reporting Standards.

These statements reflect the standards in effect as of 31 December 2001. We are working on a disclosure and presentation checklist and plan to update these model financial statements to reflect all IAS/IFRS in effect as of 31 December 2003.

Agenda project summaries are updated

05 May 2003

We have updated our summaries of the following agenda projects to reflect decisions made at the IASB's April 2003 meeting: Amendments to IAS 32 and IAS 39, Financial Instruments Associates and Joint Ventures (new project page added) Business Combinations Phase II Extractive Industries First-Time Adoption of IFRS IFRIC Agenda Projects (Emission Rights) Improvements to IFRS (IAS 16) Insurance Contracts Phase I Share-Based Payment Short-Term Convergence Topics (IAS 12) .

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