Tuesday, 20th May, 2008:
The Committee of European Securities Regulators
(CESR) has published a third extract from its database of enforcement decisions taken by EU national supervisors of financial information that participate in the European Enforcer Co-Ordination Sessions (EECS). EU national supervisors monitor and review the financial statements of issuers and consider whether they comply with IFRS and other applicable reporting requirements, including relevant national law.
The EECS is a forum in which all EU/EEA national supervisors of financial information, whether CESR members or not, meet to share the reasons underpinning their accounting enforcement decisions, canvas members’ views on issues currently being dealt with and to identify issues which do not appear to be covered by financial reporting standards or which may be affected by conflicting interpretations for referral to standard setting or interpretive bodies such as the IASB or IFRIC.
CESR has developed a confidential database of enforcement decisions taken by individual EU national supervisors as a source of information to foster appropriate application of IFRS. All decisions submitted to the this database are considered as appropriate for publication, unless:
Similar decisions have already been published by CESR, and publication of a new one would not add any substantial value to the fostering of consistent application;
The decision deals with a simple accounting issue that, even having been considered a material infringement, does not in itself have any accounting merit;
There is no consensus in the EECS to support the submitted decision.
A particular EU National Enforcer, on a grounded and justified basis, believes that the decision should not be published;
In response to concerns about confidentiality and privacy laws, which vary between EU jurisdictions, extracts do not, usually, include the name of the issuer or the enforcer or any other details that would enable the issuer or its jurisdiction to be identified.
The Irish Auditing and Accounting Supervisory Authority (IAASA) is a member of the EECS and the Head of Financial Reporting Supervision is also a member of the EECS’ Agenda Group. Accordingly, in addition to contributing to the Group’s plenary meetings, IAASA has a direct input to, and involvement in:
the review of emerging cases and decisions as tabled by Member States’ enforcement authorities with a view to assessing those which should be afforded priority for consideration and discussion at the plenary; and
the review of enforcement decisions taken by EU accounting enforcers with a view to determining whether they should be published.
Note: In some EU jurisdictions national supervisors may provide an opinion on a particular accounting issue before an issuer’s accounts have been finalised and published. This is not the case in Ireland. These “pre-clearance” decisions are made on the basis of information and assumptions supplied by an issuer to the relevant national enforcer. Pre-clearance decisions are identified as such in the CESR publication.
The most recent material published by CESR can be accessed here