Tuesday, 3 March 2015

‘IFRS Has Increased Investor Confidence in Nigeria’

Chief Executive Officer of the Financial Reporting Council (FRC
The Chief Executive Officer of the Financial Reporting Council (FRC), Mr. Jim Obazee has attributed the growth in foreign investments recorded by Nigeria in the past few years to implementation of the International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS).
Obazee, also said the IFRS also contributed significantly to Nigeria becoming the number one investment destination in Africa.
The federal government had on July 28, 2010 accepted the recommendation of the committee on the roadmap to the adoption of IFRS in Nigeria. It had then stated that adopting the global accounting standards would be in the interest of the Nigerian economy for reporting entities in the country to adopt globally accepted, high-quality accounting standards with the IFRS, using a phased transition, effectiveJanuary 1, 2012.
Obazee stated at weekend that the “implementation of IFRS increased the assurance and comfort of both local and foreign investors, in the financial statements that are issued by companies in Nigeria.
“The International Accounting Standards Board classified Nigeria as an IFRS-based country and even sent their priced officials to come and run a three-day ‘train-the-trainer’ workshop on IFRS for SMEs.”
He also pointed out that as a result of the adoption of the IFRS by the country, the Accountant General of the Federation and his colleagues in other states in the country have been working tirelessly to ensure that they prepare their financial reports to comply with the International Public Accounting Standards (IPSAS), of which his agency is overseeing its implementation in the country.
In addition, the FRC regulates financial reporting and corporate governance in both public and private sector in Nigeria.
The essence of that, according to the FRC boss, is to mitigate corruption and promote accountability, transparency and good governance.
A number of inspection and compliance monitoring had been initiated and carried out by the FRC.
“Nigerians can see that professionals who engage in the financial reporting process of entities (in both public and private sectors of the economy) have to mandatorily register with the FRC. They also attest and take responsibility for the accuracy and reliability of the financial reports issued by such entities.
“Nigeria is the first country of the world to require this. Had this been the global practice, Arthur Andersen (chartered accountants) will still have been in existence today, as only the registered professionals would have been punished for the fraudulent reporting of Enron.
“Nigeria also saw that public institutions such as the Central Bank of Nigeria and the Bank of Industry were investigated for fraudulent financial reporting. This is also the first time that federal government institutions are subjected to this level of inspection,” Obazee added. THISDAY

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