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November 14, 2008

News briefs

US IFRS road map released… ICAEW and Indian institute enter agreement…Governance code moves a step closer in the UK…

REGULATIONUS IFRS road map released

The US Securities and Exchange Commission has released for public comment its long-awaited road map proposing the use of IFRS by US issuers. The 165-page proposal, which was initially announced in August, provides more detail on moving the world’s largest economy from the use of US GAAP to international accounting standards by 2014. The SEC said it would make a decision in 2011 on whether to proceed with mandatory adoption for all companies. As many as 110 qualifying companies could opt to begin using IFRS in fiscal years ending after 15 December 2009 – estimated to be about 14 percent of US market capitalisation.

STRATEGYICAEW and Indian institute enter agreement

The Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales and the Institute of Chartered Accountants in India have agreed to allow members to gain reciprocal membership subject to qualification requirements. Under the agreement, appropriately qualified and experienced members of either institute will be able to join the other by receiving credit for their existing accountancy qualification and, where relevant, recognition for their existing work experience. The two institutes combined have more than 280,000 members.

REGULATIONGovernance code moves a step closer in the UK

An Audit Firm Governance (AFG) Working Group, established by the ICAEW, is seeking public feedback to help shape a governance code for UK firms that audit public interest entities. The consultation paper asks 20 questions on a range of topics from risk management and governance structures to issues of scope, implementation and monitoring.

The governance code is one of the key recommendations in last year’s Financial Reporting Council (FRC) Market Participants Group report.

One requirement of the code being mooted is that firms introduce independent non-executives on a governance board and that independent non-executives form part of board committees covering audit, remuneration and nomination matters. Some firms already reflect this requirement in their current governance structures. AFG project director Robert Hodgkinson said that during the first half of 2009 the group will prepare a draft code for further consultation.

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