Budget 08: Government IFRS switch delayed a year

The Treasury will delay adoption of IFRS until 2009/10 following a select
committee meeting last week in which it was revealed that two of the
government’s largest departments – the Ministry of Defence, and Health – were
not ready for the switch.

KPMG public sector audit director, Greg McIntosh said the key to successful
implementation of IFRS lay in preparation.

‘Certainly, our experience of the introduction of IFRS into the private
sector was that the companies that started the earliest fared the best.

‘The extra year will be important in enabling central government to prepare
thoroughly and to restate the previous year’s accounts for comparative purposes.

‘It will be important, though, that momentum is not lost and that this
deferral does not result in the foot being taken off the gas in the movement
towards IFRS reporting. A year is not a long time in financial reporting, and
there is still very little room for slippage,’ he said.

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