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IFRS Standards: the Year Ahead

2018 was another eventful year for the IFRS Foundation and the International Accounting Standards Board. We completed a major project on the Conceptual Framework in Financial Reporting, and made good progress on several other projects which will be our focus in the year ahead.

First, we will continue supporting implementation of IFRS 17, the new insurance contracts standard, by speaking at and organising events and producing educational materials that can be accessed on our website. Stakeholders will be allowed further time to submit additional implementation questions to the Transition Resource Group for IFRS 17, which was set up in 2017 and comprises experts directly involved in implementing the Standard.

Having carefully listened to our stakeholders and to feedback, the IASB proposed in November 2018 a oneyear deferral of the effective date for IFRS 17 from 2021 to 2022. The discussions will continue this year, and we are now looking at whether to make any minor changes to the standard. The proposed deferral and any other further potential clarifications will be consulted publicly before the IASB makes any changes.

This year, we will continue working on improvements to the effectiveness of financial statements as part of the Better Communication in Financial Reporting initiative: our Primary Financial Statements project and the Disclosure Initiative
are on the IASB agenda for 2019, as is the topic of broader financial reporting. We will work on updating the 2010 IFRS Practice Statement 1 Management Commentary. To support this work, we established the Management Commentary Consultative Group in 2018. Its aim is to provide the IASB with practical experience and expertise in developing, implementing and using management commentary regimes, and advise us as we develop proposals for updating the practice statement.

We are also looking into goodwill and impairment. As a consequence of adopting IFRS 3 Business Combinations in 2004, the amortisation of goodwill was abolished in favour of the impairment-only approach. During the July 2018 meeting however, the IASB decided to include a comprehensive analysis of the accounting for goodwill in our upcoming discussion paper. The document will include a discussion on the possible improvements in disclosures and the possible reintroduction of amortisation. We will have many further discussions about goodwill this year.

In addition, there are a few smaller projects on the IASB agenda for this year, about which you can find out more on our website under the IASB Work Plan. Stakeholders will have many opportunities to share their views on our work in the year ahead. I encourage you to take those opportunities to help us create the highest-quality standards we can.

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