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An Executive Guide to IFRS: Content, Costs and Benefits to Business by Peter Walton

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Transition

The working assumption among the IASC leadership was that IOSCO would indeed this time endorse the standards, and consequently the standard-setter should prepare itself for the next phase of life as the provider of standards to the international capital markets. As early as 1996 the Board agreed to set up a Strategy Working Party to review the functioning of the IASC and make recommendations for its future organization. A discussion paper was issued in December 1998. The future structure of the institution was hotly contested, and remains a matter that some constituents would like to see changed.

Many participants noted that when the IASC Board met, although there were only about 15 members, each delegation consisted of several people, and there were several official observers as well. The result was that usually more than 50 people sat down together to make decisions, and sometimes the numbers rose to perilously near 100. The organization was based on geographical representation with an overlay of interested organizations such as the SEC and European Commission. This contrasts with the US standard-setter, which at the time had seven members.

In effect these are the two competing models that different people favoured: either a geographically representative organization or a small professional committee. If it were a geographically representative body, there was also the question of whether it should represent the countries with the major capital markets, or the countries ...

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