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International Outreach to Foreign Standard-Setters Extends to Asia and Europe

The FASB is winding down the 12 years of work it did on accounting convergence with the IASB, and the U.S. board is stepping up its outreach to foreign standard-setters to replace the work it once did with the IASB. Board officials are planning meetings with standard-setters in Japan, Canada, China, and Korea during an October trip.

As the FASB winds down the 12 years of work it did on accounting convergence with the IASB, the U.S. board is stepping up its outreach to foreign standard-setters.

The accounting board’s annual trip to meet with Accounting Standards Board of Japan is scheduled for October and being extended to include stops in China, Korea, Canada, other large capital markets, and markets where U.S. GAAP is still used. Despite Canada’s adoption of IFRS in 2011, U.S. GAAP is still employed in industries like utilities that lack an applicable standard in IFRS.

FASB Chairman Russell Golden told the Financial Accounting Foundation (FAF) on August 19, 2014, during the foundation’s quarterly meeting in New York, that he’s finalizing plans for the trip that will include FASB members Thomas Linsmeier and Daryl Buck.

The international outreach effort is “very important,” FAF Chairman Jeffrey Diermeier said.

“It will help us in terms of developing our standards,” Diermeier said. “We know that you’ll be respectful of the global environment that we operate in. The broader the soup that we are able to stir so that we can develop better standards, the better off we’re all going to be.”

“It’s important that when we improve U.S. GAAP that we understand how it’s implemented in our capital markets and how it’s implemented in other capital markets that use U.S. GAAP,” Golden told Accounting & Compliance Alert . “That’s why it’s important that we go, and we meet with companies, and we meet with standard-setters in those countries.”

In June, FASB Vice Chairman James Kroeker told a Los Angeles conference that the FASB “envisions a long-term, global standard-setting environment in which the FASB, the IASB, and other major capital market standard-setters collaborate, cooperate and coordinate as peers.” Kroeker said that as part of this effort, the board has been reaching out to national standard-setters in Japan, Canada, the UK, Germany, France, Italy, and other countries.

“Our goal is to facilitate an ongoing dialogue regarding how we might work more closely together to share our collective experiences, wisdom, and insight in the pursuit of making accounting standards more globally comparable – even as we recognize that one size may not always fit all,” Kroeker said.

As part of the effort, Golden and Linsmeier represent the FASB on the IASB’s Accounting Standards Advisory Forum (ASAF), which the international board formed to fill the gap in its cross-border outreach created by the ending of the joint work with the FASB.

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