ACCA calls for IFRS simplification

International Financial Reporting Standards have become so complex that many managing directors can no longer understand the accounts of their own businesses, the chief executive of ACCA, Allen Blewitt, has said.

Link: IFRS update 2 – a management briefing

Speaking at a conference in London, Blewitt said: ‘ From talking to our members working in business around the world, it is clear that the length of the standards and complexity of the concepts represent a very real problem in many countries.

‘The standards have been described to me as a major turn-off and disincentive for accountants in commerce and industry. People who initially qualified as accountants and are now principals and managing directors resent that they can no longer understand the accounts of the business that they helped to build.’

Blewitt re-asserted his enthusiasm for the IFRS process, but said the International Accounting Standards Board needed to instigate a ‘shift in emphasis’ towards the concerns of countries who were trying to adapt IFRS to their national circumstances and to help smaller, non-listed companies.

He said that because IFRS had essentially been designed for listed companies, it was not entirely appropriate for the great majority of businesses and therefore the IASB’s ‘Small and Medium-Sized Enterprise’ project was urgently needed.

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