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Are Ukrainian accountants in love with International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS)?

February 18, 2005.

    *** The answer may well be yes as more than 400 people applied to attend the end of project conference of the European Union TACIS project ‘Accountancy Training in Ukraine’ due to start in Kyiv on St. Valentine’s Day, 14th February 2005.
    The conference will be the conclusion of a highly successful two year project which began in January 2003. The conference will be held from 14th to 17th February 2005 and will involve more than 260 delegates and many distinguished Ukrainian and International speakers.
    The main objective of the project, for which the European Commission provided ?2,600,000, has been to promote accounting within the private enterprise sector that is compliant with IFRS and assist Ukraine in the development of the accounting profession. This objective was split into three main components:
    ° Dissemination of IFRS Knowledge and Skills, achieved through training seminars, distribution of training materials, an IFRS Manual, a comprehensive compendium of accounts, study tours, the establishment of the Accounting Resource Centre as an information and training centre.
    ° Accounting and Tax Reform; providing support to the project beneficiary, the Ministry of Finance, on the process of accounting reform.
    ° The development of Professional Accounting Bodies; giving support to all the main Ukrainian Professional Accounting Bodies to promote their further development and international recognition.
    There can be little doubt that if Ukraine is to achieve market economy status and World Trade Organisation recognition that the accounting profession will have a huge responsibility in helping reliable and transparent financial statements to become the norm for Ukrainian enterprises. Over the last two years this project has made a significant contribution towards this end. (see next page for more details).
    A press conference will be held at the European Commission on Friday 18th February
    For further information please contact Ms Anje Schubert, Press and Information Officer
    Dissemination of IFRS Knowledge and Skills: As the title of the project suggests, the core activity of the project was aimed at helping to promote a wider understanding of the role IFRS compliant financial statements and reports can play in improving an enterprise's efficiency and its capacity for effective budgeting and assessment of strategic opportunities.
    A team of 16 trainers were selected and trained by the project; these trainers have between them delivered a total of 52 training seminars in 13 different cities throughout Ukraine, attended by 725 accountants, 223 non-financial managers and 664 university students.
    As with the conference, supply exceeded demand and the project could have continued to hold training seminars for many months more for all three of the target groups.
    In addition to producing high quality training materials for these seminars, the contractors have also produced a comprehensive combined IFRS and Management Accounting Manual and a Compendium comparing financial statements produced under UAS and IFRS, both of which are available in hard copy and on CDROM. It is anticipated that these publications will become useful works of reference for many Ukrainian accountants. Over 2000 copies of the manual and CD have already been circulated and a further 2000 copies are being printed to meet the demand.
    To further promote a better understanding of IFRS and related issues, four study tours comprising groups of non-financial managers, accountants and representatives of the Ministry of Finance were taken to London. Among the well established institutions that these study tours visited were the London Stock Exchange, Lloyds of London (the insurance capital of the world), the Inland Revenue (the UK Tax Authority), Companies House (where every UK company is registered) and the IASB (International Accounting Standards Board).
    The Accounting Resource Centre (ARC) was established by the project as an information and training centre in Kyiv. Many of the project’s training seminars have been held here and it has also acted as the administrative base of the project as well as hosting talks with the Professional Accounting Bodies, other aid projects and Ukrainian and International accountants. The EU Delegation is currently considering a suitable means of securing the sustainability of the ARC in order that further training programmes may be provided after completion of the project.
    Accounting and Tax Reform: Outputs delivered to the main project beneficiary, the Ministry of Finance of Ukraine, have included providing a detailed analysis and comparison of Ukrainian Accounting Standards (UAS) and IFRS together with recommendations to narrow the differences between them; recommendations on amendments to the Law on Accounting to make it more compatible with the application of IFRS which has become a requirement for an increasing number of Ukrainian enterprises; recommendations on the drafting of new UAS and a comparative analysis of the main differences between UAS and tax reporting together with recommendations as to possible amendments in order to make accounting and tax legislation more readily reconcilable. These recommendations have been discussed by the Accounting Methodology Council and have contributed to the Ministry’s move towards accounting reform.
    Professional Accounting Bodies: Meetings with all the main Ukrainian professional bodies have regularly taken place throughout the two years of the project; round table talks were held in Kyiv with representative of International Accounting Bodies and project representatives have spoken at several seminars and conferences organised by both local and international accounting organisations, all with the aim of assisting in the development of a strong independent accounting profession within Ukraine. Five of the Ukrainian professional bodies will speak at the conference.

Supported by Eurasia Foundation Supported by Eurasia Foundation

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