Adopted at first reading on 12 March 2002 with a view to the adoption of European Parliament and Council Regulation (EC) No ..../2002 on the application of international accounting standards
THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT AND THE COUNCIL OF THE EUROPEAN UNION,
Having regard to the Treaty establishing the European Community, and in particular Article 95(1) thereof,
Having regard to the proposal from the Commission1,
Having regard to the opinion of the Economic and Social Committee
Acting in accordance with the procedure laid down in Article 251 of the Treaty
(1) The Lisbon European Council of 23-24* March 2000 emph·sised the need to accelerate completion of the internai market for financial services, set the deadline of 2005 to implement the Commission's Financial Services Action Plan and urged that steps be taken to enhance the comparability of financial statements prepared by publicly traded companies.
(2) In order to contribute to a better functioning of the internai market, publicly traded eompanies must be rÈquired to apply a single set of high quality international accountirig rules for the preparation of their Consolidated financial statemerits. Furthefmore, it is important that the financial reporting rules applied by European eompanies participating in financial markets are accepted internationally and are truly global standards. This implies an increasing convergence of accounting standards and rules currently used internatiÚn„lly with the ultimatÈ objective of achieving a single set of global accounting standards.
(3) Council Directive 78/660/EEC of 25 July 1978 on the annual accounts of certain types of eompanies4, Council Directive 83/ 349/EEC of 13 June 1983 on Consolidated accounts5, Couricil Directive 86/635/EEC of 8 December 1986 on the annual accounts and Consolidated accounts of banks and other financial institutions6 and Council Directive 91/674/EEC of 19 December 1991 on the annual accounts and Consolidated accounts of insurance eompanies7 are also addressed to publicly traded EU eompanies. The reporting requirements set out in the se Directives cannot ensure the high levei of transparency andPage 257 comparability of financial reporting from ali publicly traded EU companies which is a necessary condition for building an integrated capital market which operates effectively, smoothly and efficiently. It is therefore necessary to supplement the legal framework applicable to publicly traded companies.
(4) This Regulation aims at contributing to the efficient and cost-effective functioning of the capital market. The protection of investors and the maintenance of confÌdence in the financial markets is also an important aspect of the completion of the internai market in this ·rea; This Regulation reinforces the freedom of movement of capital in the internai market and helps enabling European companies to compete on an equal footing for financial resources available in the European capital markets, as well as in world capital markets.
(5) It is important for the competitiveness of European capital markets to achieve convergence of the norms used in Europe for preparing financial statements, with international aÁcounting standards that can be used globally, for cross-border transactions or listing anywhere in the world.
(6) On 13 June 2000, the Commission published its Communication on "EU Financial Reporting Strategy: the way forward" in which it was proposed that ali publicly traded EU companies prepare their Consolidated financial statements in accordance with one single set of aÁcounting standards, namely International AÁcounting Standards (IAS), at the latest by 2005.
(7) International AÁcounting Standards are developed by the International AÁcounting Standards Committee (IASC), whose purpose is to develop a single set of global aÁcounting standards. Further to the restructuring ofthe LASC, the new Board on 1 April 2001, as one ofits first decisions, renamed the IASC the International AÁcounting Standards Board (IASB) and, as far as future international aÁcounting standards are concerned, renamed IAS InternationalPage 258 Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS). These standards should, wherever possible and provided that they ensure a high degree of transparency and comparability for financial reporting in the Community, be made obligatory for use by ali publicly traded EU companies as well as by ali EU companies preparing admission to trading of securities.
(8) The measures necessary for the implementation of the present Regulation should be adopted in aecordance with Council Decision 1999/468/EC of 28 June 1999 laying down the procedures for the exercise of implementing powers conferred on the Commission8 and with due regard to the declaration made by the Commission in the European Parliament on 5 February 2002 concerning the implementation of financial services legislation. To adopt an international accounting standard for application in the Community, it is necessary firstly that it meets the basic requirement ofDirectives 78/660/EEC, 83/349/EEC, 86/635/EEC and 911 674IEEC that is to say that its application results in a true and fair view ofthe financial position and performance of an enterprise - this principie being considered in the light of the said Council Directives without implying a strict conformity with each and every provision ofthose Directives; secondly that, in aecordance with the conclusions of the Council of Economic and Finance Ministers ofl 7 July 2000, it is conducive to the European public good and lastly that it meets basic criteria as to the quality of information required for financial statements to be useful to users.
(9) An accounting technical committee will provide support and expertise to the Commission in the assessment of international accounting standards.Page 259
(10) The endorsement...