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|The International Public Sector Accounting Board (IPSASB) held its third meeting of the year from September 19-22 in Toronto.
1. Social Benefits
The IPSASB approved Exposure Draft (ED) 63, Social Benefits, which will be issued at the end of October with the consultation period running until March 31, 2018. ED 63 proposes the obligating event approach, in which liabilities are recognized when the eligibility criteria for the next benefit (including being alive) is satisfied. The ED also includes an optional insurance approach and stipulates that entities are required to disclose projected cash flows for schemes for the next five years.
2. Cash Basis IPSAS
The IPSASB approved a revised standard, Financial Reporting under the Cash Basis of Accounting (the Cash Basis IPSAS). The revisions, which are intended to make implementation of the Cash Basis IPSAS easier, recast as encouragements rather than requirements: the preparation of consolidated financial statements, disclosure of information about external assistance, and payments made by third parties. The revised Cash Basis IPSAS will be applicable from January 1, 2019 with early adoption encouraged.
3. Strategy and Work Plan Consultation
The IPSASB discussed a firstdraft of its consultation document forthe Strategy and Work Plan 2019–2023, which it expects to issue in January 2018. The consultation document was informed by outreach and engagement with constituents, the IPSASB’s oversight body the Public Interest Committee, and the IPSASB Consultative Advisory Group. The IPSASB plans to hold regional roundtables in the first half of 2018 to ensure broad engagement with constituents on the consultation document.
For measurement of concessionary leases, the IPSASB decided that the lessor’s underlying asset should be measured in accordance with the relevant IPSAS. The IPSASB directed staff to further analyze three options of accounting for the subsidized component of concessionary leases by lessors. The three options are to recognize the subsidized component of a concessionary lease (i) as a liability (unearned revenue), (ii) directly in net assets/equity, or (iii) not to recognize the subsidized component. Under options (i) and (ii), an expense for the subsidized component would also be recognized by a lessor, while an expense for the subsidized component would not be recognized under option (iii).
5. Public Sector Measurement
The IPSASB decided that measurement of heritage and infrastructure assets should be addressed in the Public Sector Measurement project and has directed the Task Force and staff to develop a consultation paper that includes a preliminary exposure draft. This exposure draft will propose an approach to measurement and will include advice on addressing public sector-specific needs, as well as the extent to which IFRS 13, Fair Value Measurement, should be drawn upon.
6. Infrastructure Assets
The IPSASB agreed upon an approach for the Infrastructure Assets project, which involves further research to determine the difficulties preparers encounter when applying IPSAS 17, Property, Plant and Equipment. After this research phase, a final project proposal will be presented with envisaged outputs. Staff will update the CAG and IPSASB on the progress of the research at the December 2017 meeting.
7. 2017 Handbook Available for Download
The 2017 Handbook of International Public Sector Accounting Pronouncements is now available for electronic download on the IPSASB website. The 2017 Handbook includes the new standards IPSAS 39, Employee Benefits and IPSAS 40, Public Sector Combinations. Hard copy editions will be available for purchase in November.
8. Meeting Podcast
A podcast highlighting key points of the September 2017 meeting is now available.
9. Next Meeting
The next meeting of the IPSASB will be in Toronto from December 5-8. The Consultative Advisory Group will hold its second meeting of the year in Toronto on December 4. For more information, or to register to attend a meeting as an observer, visit the IPSASB and CAG websites.
10. Upcoming Dates
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