Australia harmonises standards with IFRSs, New Zealand

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16 May 2011

Further to our earlier story about Australia-New Zealand convergence, the Australian Accounting Standards Board (AASB) has released a number a standards to give effect to 'Phase 1' of the joint harmonisation programme being undertaken by the AASB and the New Zealand Accounting Standards Review Board (ASRB).

The new Standards are:

  • AASB 1054 Australian Additional Disclosures (link to AASB website, PDF 245k) sets out the Australian-specific disclosures that are additional to IFRSs in areas such as compliance with Australian Accounting Standards, the nature of financial statements (general purpose or special purpose), audit fees, imputation (franking) credits and the reconciliation of net operating cash flow to profit (loss)
  • AASB 2011-1 Amendments to Australian Accounting Standards arising from the Trans-Tasman Convergence Project (link to AASB website, PDF 94k) makes amendments to a range of pronouncements, deleting various Australian-specific guidance and disclosures from other Standards and more closely aligning the wording used to that adopted in IFRSs. The 'true and fair override' is introduced into AASB 101 Presentation of Financial Statements (equivalent to IAS 1), but its application in the Australian context is limited by an additional 'Aus' paragraph
  • AASB 2011-2 Amendments to Australian Accounting Standards arising from the Trans-Tasman Convergence Project – Reduced Disclosure Requirements (link to AASB website, PDF 48k) establishes reduced disclosure requirements for entities preparing general purpose financial statements under Australia's revised differential reporting framework.

In August 2009, the Prime Ministers of both countries released a Joint Prime Ministerial Statement of Intent and the Single Economic Market Outcome Proposals. The completion of Phase 1 of the convergence programme is expected to open the way for the relevant government agencies to remove the burdens associated with regulation affecting financial reporting by branches, subsidiaries and sub-consolidations in both countries.

The revised requirements are required to be applied for annual reporting periods beginning on or after 1 July 2011 (except AASB 2011-2, which is effective from 1 July 2013).

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