Achieving Global Convergence of Financial Reporting by Parmod Chand,Christopher Patel

By Parmod Chand,Christopher Patel

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For the most part, tertiary education is provided through scholarships under aid agreements with universities in Fiji, Papua New Guinea, Australia, New Zealand, and Hawaii, though the numbers of private students from some countries are also growing. Despite this, evidence shows that the education, training, and experience of many accountants are inadequate (Dixon, 2002, p. 20). Moreover, these South Pacific Island countries do not have wellestablished professional accounting bodies. Even if professional accounting bodies exist (such as in Tonga, Samoa, and Solomon Islands), they tend to lack both financial resources and sufficiently qualified professional accountants.

7 As the external funding diversifies, these South Pacific Island nations are forced to adopt accounting frameworks recommended by the donors for greater transparency and accountability (Asian Development Bank, 2002). The South Pacific Island countries also aim to attract foreign capital. To facilitate this process, Australia proposed the idea of a single currency for the region in 2003. Though the Pacific Islands Forum is yet to formally discuss the proposal, there is considerable debate on the subject of common currency (Jayaraman, 2006, p.

The AASB has also issued a number of interpretations that are equivalent to the interpretations issued by the International Financial Reporting Interpretations Committee (IFRIC). In summary, this analysis of Australia suggests that the following factors may be indicative of a country’s readiness and or suitability to adopt the IFRS with amendments and additions:  a well-established set of accounting standards already prevailing in the country;  a significant number of experienced professional accountants;  well-structured educational and professional training;  a strong presence of the Big 4 accounting firms;  legal as opposed to professional backing for the country’s accounting standards and an independent accounting regulator to facilitate the implementation and enforcement of accounting standards; and  an increasing portion of equity financing in the private sector and largely developed capital markets and stock exchanges.

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