International


 The International Accounting Standards Board (IASB) issued a minor amendment to IFRS 1, First-time Adoption of International Financial Reporting Standards.

 

The amendment relieves first-time adopters of IFRS from providing the additional disclosures introduced in March 2009 in an amendment to IFRS 7, Improving Disclosures about Financial Instruments. It thereby ensures that first-time adopters benefit from the same transition provisions that amendments to IFRS 7 provide to current IFRS preparers.

 

The additional disclosure requirements included in amendments to IFRS 7 were part of the IASB’s response to the financial crisis; they require enhanced disclosures about fair value measurements and liquidity risk.

 

Additionally, the amendment to IFRS 1 clarifies the IASB’s conclusions and intended transition for amendments to IFRS 7.

 

The effective date of the amendment Limited Exemption from Comparative IFRS 7 Disclosures for First-time Adopters (Amendment to IFRS 1) is July 1, with earlier application permitted. The document is available at iasb.org.

 

 The International Public Sector Accounting Standards Board (IPSASB) published a new International Public Sector Accounting Standard (IPSAS) that covers the accounting for and disclosure of intangible assets. The IPSASB is an independent standard-setting board that operates under the International Federation of Accountants (IFAC).

 

IPSAS 31, Intangible Assets, fills a gap in the IPSASB literature and adds some guidance on public-sector-specific issues, including intangible heritage assets. IPSAS 31 is primarily drawn from the IASB’s IAS 38, Intangible Assets. It also contains extracts from the IASB’s Standing Interpretations Committee Interpretation 32 (SIC 32), Intangible Assets—Web Site Costs, adding application guidance and illustrations that have not yet been incorporated into the IAS. At this point, IPSAS 31 does not deal with uniquely public-sector issues, such as powers and rights conferred by legislation, a constitution, or by equivalent means; the IPSASB will reconsider the applicability of the standard to these powers and rights in the context of its conceptual framework project, which is currently in progress.

 

IPSAS 31 is available for free at web.ifac.org/publications.

 

 The IPSASB also published three new standards that cover all aspects of the accounting for and disclosure of financial instruments.

 

The standards are primarily drawn from IFRS, but address a number of public- sector-specific issues:

 

  • IPSAS 28, Financial Instruments: Presentation, primarily draws on IAS 32 and establishes principles for presenting financial instruments as liabilities or equity, and for offsetting financial assets and financial liabilities.
  • IPSAS 29, Financial Instruments: Recognition and Measurement, primarily draws on IAS 39, establishing principles for recognizing and measuring financial assets, financial liabilities, and some contracts to buy or sell nonfinancial items.
  • IPSAS 30, Financial Instruments: Disclosures, draws on IFRS 7 and requires disclosures for the types of loans described in IPSAS 29. It enables users to evaluate the significance of the financial instruments in the entity’s financial position and performance; the nature and extent of risks arising from financial instruments to which the entity is exposed; and how those risks are managed.

 

These standards address some key public- sector issues, including financial guarantee contracts provided for nil or nominal consideration and concessionary loans.

 

IPSAS 28–30 are available for free at web.ifac.org/publications.

 

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