Agencies bracing up to meet IFRS deadline

Written by Neha Pal | New Delhi | Updated: Aug 19 2009, 05:00am hrs
With the deadline for international financial reporting standards (IFRS) implementation coming closer, various agencies have taken the lead in helping companies transit to the new standard. Listed companies and public interest entities in the country are required to transit from the Indian accounting standards to IFRS by April 1, 2011.

The Corporate Executive Board (CEB), which is of one of the largest business advisory platform has launched a paid implementation support portal, IFRSPortal.in, which would aid Indian companies in making smooth transition towards international financial reporting standards compliant regime.

Consulting firm KPMG has also come up with a web-based IFRS institute to create awareness and enable companies converge from Indian GAAP to IFRS. The web-based platform contains all updates and information on the IFRS implementation in India.

According to experts, the resources provided through the portal would enable the companies to save on the auditor and consultants spend, upgrade their IFRS transition teams and avoid costly pitfalls that face transitioning companies.

Kruti Bharucha, director of CEB India's finance practice said, "We have seen globally that the transition for a firm can take anywhere between 12 to 36 months, but hundreds of CFOs in India have not yet realised the magnitude of effort and risk involved. The time is ripe to invest in extensive IFRS transition planning."

"The IFRS training given to the corporates in India is expected to improve Indian companies access to overseas capital by making their financial statements comparable internationally as several other nations including Australia, Canada, US," said Shaurav Sen, managing director and country head at CEB India.

With not much time left for convergence to IFRS, the high-powered core group on IFRS set up by the ministry of corporate affairs has decided to accelerate efforts to engage more stakeholders in this process. In a meeting held at Mumbai at Sebi bhavan, the core group discussed the implementation challenges with regards to convergence with IFRS and also expressed confidence in the issuance of the road map at an early date for convergence to enable adherence to target date of 2011.

The accounting regulator, Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI) also said that their convergence project to IFRS is at an advanced stage of completion. ICAI had recently presented the details of a comprehensive capacity building programme which the institute is carrying on to prepare the CA profession for this transition and stated that a large number of professionals have undergone training and the process is being accelerated.