BusinessDay

Nigeria’s financial reporting language to be ready by 2023 – FRC

The Financial Reporting Council (FRC) of Nigeria says the development of its ongoing extensible Business Reporting Language (XBRL) will be ready by 2023, hoping that the language will lift the gridlock that has been hovering over the financial sector for years.

Shuaibu Adamu Ahmed, Executive Secretary/Chief Executive Officer of FRC, expects that this development will aid transparency, high automation, faster analysis, cost savings, utilization, and better quality of information for insights and decision making.

Ahmed, in his keynote speech at an event organized by the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) in collaboration with FRC with the theme, ‘lFRS in a Changing World’, highlighted the importance of XBRL.

“The benefits of XBRL cannot be overemphasized because it plays a key role in easing financial reporting,” Ahmed said.

According to the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB), XBRL is an Extensible Mark-up Language (XML) similar to Hypertext Markup Language (HTML), but without predefined tags to use standard for tagging business and financial reports to increase the transparency and accessibility of business information by using a uniform format.

Ahmed stated that the XBRL provided the financial community a standard to prepare, publish, exchange, and extract financial statements through defined taxonomies (electronically and automatically).

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He noted that the areas of judgment and sources of key estimation in financial reporting were deepening and widening, pointing out that, “international financial reporting standards, in its entirety, must be forward-looking.”

The event also provided insights into the ever-changing world of financial reporting and its standardization.

It was in the light of that Maggie McGhee, Executive Director; Strategy and Governance at ACCA, advised that financial reporting should be in international standards for corporate reporting.

“There are very clear benefits that come from account completeness and disclosures which lead to global comparability between different entities across the world,” she said.

Thomas Isibor, Head, ACCA Nigeria, in his opening remarks, emphasized the need for more collaboration for the growth of the financial sector.

“One of the things which Covid-19 has precipitated is the need for more collaboration and to work closer,” he said, adding, “regulators as well as organizations should come together to ensure that standards are delivered and that core values of economic growth happen in the process.”

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