Global Progress of IFRS Noted by IASB’s Hoogervorst

At the IFRS Conference in Singapore, Hans Hoogervorst, chairman of the International Accounting Standards Board (IASB) commented on the progress of IFRS around the world in a speech titled ‘Charting progress towards global accounting standards’.

In the speech, Hoogervorst outlined the current use of IFRS around the world, particularly across Asia. Jurisdictional profiles published by the IASB that show that IFRS is now required for use by more than 100 jurisdictions worldwide. Hoogervorst emphasised that the use of IFRS is no longer concentrated in Europe. The spread of IFRS in the Americas, Asia and Africa is such that the combined GDP of non-European jurisdictions using IFRS is over US$23 trillion, more than the combined EU-GDP of US$17 trillion.

Hoogervorst also discussed elements of the IASB’s current work programme. In particular, he spoke about the significance of the upcoming standard on leasing, discussing a recently prepared effect analysis of the standard on 12,000 listed companies in Europe, Asia and North America. Hoogervorst noted that only a minority of companies will be significantly affected by the leases standard, and that roughly 50% of companies will not be affected at all since they currently do not have material operating leases.

Hoogervorst also pointed out that the use of leases is heavily concentrated in less than 10% of companies. He argues that in the economic sectors where leasing is prevalent, such as transportation, the leases standard will greatly enhance comparability and improve insight into the true leverage of the companies affected.

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