Thursday, 19 September 2019

Questions (61)

Noel Rock


61. Deputy Noel Rock asked the Minister for Finance if his attention has been drawn to the fact that Irish banks implemented an illegal version of accounting standard IAS 39 in the period 2005 to 2018 (details supplied); and if his attention has been further drawn to the fact that an organisation confirmed that its advice on IAS 39 as used by a company is inconsistent with the law. [38025/19]

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Written answers (Question to Finance)

I am aware that the Clerk of the Joint Committee on Finance, Public Expenditure and Reform, and Taoiseach had written to the Secretary General of the Department of Finance, drawing his attention to statements made to that Committee on 28 May 2019 relating to accounting standards and I understand that a reply has issued to the Committee.

Statutory requirements and international rules for accounting standards are the responsibility of my colleague, the Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation. Her Department has policy responsibility for the transposition and implementation of the EU Audit Directive and Regulation, the Companies Acts, and also for the Irish Auditing and Accounting Supervisory Authority (IAASA).

In relation to the accounting standards for banks, these have been changed by the introduction of International Financial Reporting Standard (IFRS) 9 to replace International Accounting Standard (IAS) 39.  The adoption of IFRS in the EU requires the presentation of a true and fair view of the financial position of the bank. IFRS 9 specifies how an entity should classify and measure financial assets, financial liabilities, and some contracts to buy or sell non-financial items. It introduces a new regime for impairment provisioning and imposes an Expected Credit Loss approach to provisioning as opposed to the incurred loss approach that was required by IAS 39.

In relation to the cited legal opinions, I am not in a position to comment on UK legal opinions of its statutes.