World is waiting as US dithers over IFRS

ICAS PRESIDENT Sir David Tweedie has raised concerns over the impact of further delays in the US’ decision over whether or not to adopt IFRS.

Speaking at a joint ICAS and AICPA event in New York, Tweedie (pictured) warned that if a decision is delayed beyond the US elections it could lead to an unravelling of convergence.

“The US has the key to international standards in its hands. The world is waiting,” Tweedie said.

“The danger is it’s delayed, the election comes along…we end up with regional variations and it takes another ten years to put it all together again.”

Tweedie was joined by at the event by Bob Herz, former chair of FASB, and Sir Paul Cherry former chair of the Canadian AcSB.

IFRS went live in Canada in 2011. Paul Cherry said it was the right decision for Canada rather than US GAAP. “The Canadian board adopted standards to be responsive to the business community,” he said. “There were some speed bumps but the world did not come to an end. We’re still out and about.”

Bob Herz was challenged as to whether he could have done more to achieve convergence.

He said “I think we have taken it the right way. It is up to the SEC and the political process, but we need clarity on where the US is going.”

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