PracticeConsultingTweedie recognises standards burden

Tweedie recognises standards burden

In his last annual report as chairman of the Accounting Standards Board, Sir David Tweedie acknowledged the burden of the increased number of standards rushed through before the end of his tenure.

Following a year of heated debates, the ASB attempted to offset the onus on business from plethora of new standards by staggering the implementation deadlines.

The debate on how to account for share options continues to rage while a new controversial standard on accounting for pensions costs, among others, will be implemented by 2003 at the latest.

The ASB opted to avoid further contentious moves to update standard on items such as leasing in the wake of initial uproar from the sector when it issued a discussion paper in 1999.

Attempts to persuade the leasing sector of its arguments will now be conducted later this year under the leadership of the new ASB chairman Mary Keegan.

‘Because of the complexity of the issues arising and the concerns expressed by some respondents, it will take some time for the board to consider all of the points raised,’ said Sir David of the discussion paper on leasing which proposes to take a single approach to all leases.

Sir David, now board chairman of the revamped International Accounting Standards Committee, also moved to allay fears over the influence that the IASC will have over the UK’s standard setting body.

‘Some may worry that in signing up to promote convergence the Board will lose its influence. I do not think that will be the case,’ he said.

It is also the last report that Sir Sydney Lipworth QC, chairman of the Financial Reporting Council, will have to write. He will be replaced by Sir Bryan Nicholson in July 2001 after more than seven years on the council.Lipworth will however continue to play a pivotal role in standard setting following his appointment as a trustee on the IASC.

‘As an IASC trustee, I shall be working in the global context to further the same broad aims that the FRC, ASB and the [Review] Panel seek to take forward,’ said Lipworth.

The Department of Trade and Industry together with the Bank of England is responsble for appointing the FRC chairman.

Links

Levitt and Keegan welcome IASC board

Big firms in standards control bid

New chiefs for global standards-setter

FRC chairman’s Report

ASB chairman’s Report

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