Accounting Standards Board supports IASB/FASB extension of convergence
timeline to permit increased stakeholder participation

TORONTO, June 10 /CNW/ - The Accounting Standards Board (AcSB) applauds the joint announcement of the International Accounting Standards Board (IASB) and the US Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) to extend their convergence timeline beyond June 2011, allowing for greater public participation and ultimately higher quality accounting standards.

The IASB, the FASB and the G20 had originally agreed on the June 2011 deadline, with the goal of driving towards a single set of high-quality accounting standards. The convergence program is focused on major areas of accounting, such as revenue recognition, leases, financial instruments and financial statement presentation. Stakeholders have informed the Boards that the original timetable would not permit them to provide the comprehensive and thoughtful comments on the Boards' proposals that are essential in the development of standards.

"The Boards' decision puts the focus on creating high-quality standards and thorough consultation, rather than simply meeting a deadline," said Tricia O'Malley, AcSB Chair. "This extension of the deadline ensures that when the standards are finalized they will have benefited from extensive discussion and debate. We welcome the continued co-operation of the IASB and the FASB. We also welcome the US's commitment to a single set of high-quality global standards. Mary Shapiro, the Chair of the US Securities and Exchange Commissions (SEC) stated that time for stakeholders to consider proposals and give both Boards quality feedback would be well invested. In addition, Ms. Shapiro sees no reason that the adjusted timeline would affect the SEC's work plan for determining whether to incorporate IFRSs into the financial reporting system for US issuers."

In Canada, all publicly accountable enterprises and government business enterprises are required to adopt International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRSs) for fiscal years beginning on or after January 1, 2011.

Canadian companies adopting IFRSs should be well along in implementing their transition plan and should not be distracted by this change to the convergence plan of the IASB and the FASB. All IFRSs that apply to the Canadian transition have already been finalized and adopted into the CICA Handbook - Accounting. The AcSB notes that the standards to be completed in 2010, 2011 and thereafter are unlikely to be completed in time for quality implementation even if early adoption is permitted. The AcSB will continue to work with the IASB and stakeholders to manage the few outstanding issues affecting Canada's transition to IFRSs.

The Accounting Standards Board establishes financial accounting and reporting standards for use by Canadian companies and not-for-profit organizations. It participates in the development of internationally accepted accounting standards. The Board sets its financial accounting and reporting standards after an extensive process of consultation with organizations and individuals that are interested in or affected by the standards. The standards contribute to enhanced decision making by continually improving the quality of financial and other information about organizational performance reported by Canadian entities. www.ascbcanada.org

SOURCE Accounting Standards Board (AcSB)

For further information: For further information: or to arrange an interview, contact: Lisa Pretty, Communications Manager, Standards, 416-204-3482, Lisa.Pretty@cica.ca

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