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Former IFRS Advisory Council Chair reflects on Canada's changeover to IFRSs

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13 Aug 2014

In an article in the 'CPA Magazine' made available on the CPA Canada website, Paul Cherry, former Chairman of the IASB's IFRS Advisory Council reflects on Canada's changeover to IFRSs eight years after the Canadian Accounting Standards Board (AcSB) decided to adopt international reporting standards in Canada.

In his article, Mr Cherry discusses whether there was an alternative to IFRS in Canada (for example adopting US GAAP), the common North American perception that the IASB is a European-dominated institution, the current regionalisation trend with the development of new regional infrastructures, and forward-thinking on issues likely to affect the evolution of financial reporting.

He also comments on the unlikeliness of the United States requiring IFRS for domestic issuers in the near future but concludes:

IFRS remains appropriate for Canada regardless of what the US decides. That said, the US is not immune to the economic reality of the global markets and so the pressure will continue unabated on it to adopt global financial reporting standards.

Mr Cherry believes that Canada's experience was positive. Although some people originally worried about the loss of control over standard-setting domestically when the decision was made to adopt IFRS, he states that Canada has gained rather than lost because it can now help shape the global accounting standards used not only in Canada but also in more than 100 other jurisdictions. He states:

The question is not whether Canada can influence IASB, but whether Canadians are prepared to continue to contribute as global citizens – to work with IASB and AcSB for the standards we believe will best serve the global capital markets.

Please click to access Mr Cherry's article Reflections on Canada’s changeover to IFRS on the CPA Canada website.

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