International standard-setters this month agreed to the name change in a bid to distinguish new international accounting rules from existing ones.
But the European Commission’s head of financial reporting and company law, Karel van Hulle, has objected to the plans.
Talking to IAS Board chairman Sir David Tweedie at a Paris conference last week he said: ‘Commercially it is not very good to throw away a brand. I will have to change lots of things and tell lots of people about the name change. Why change it?’
Last year the European Commission threw its weight behind the development of a single set of global standards when it announced that all European listed companies will have to adopt IASs by 2005 at the latest.
Sir David argued that the name change is crucial to plans to move forward and that it had happened in the UK when FRSs took over from SAAPs. ‘It did not cause any problems then,’ he said.
However, during his keynote speech at the conference, run by the IAS Board and KPMG, Sir David clearly acknowledged the value of brands when he criticised a US accounting rule.
‘In Europe we have brands like Johnnie Walker and Champagne that are older than America. I’d sooner write off America than any of those brands,’ he said.
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