it would be fun to track GFS as it was you know as it was back when and

It would be fun to track gfs as it was you know as it

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[…] it would be fun to track GFS as it was, you know, as it was back when and accounting standards and just watch how they are harmonising . They’re ali gning anyway. And that’s what [we] realised way back when.” (Person A, 18/03/2011) The interview with PE A suggests that the idea of ‘GAAP/GFS harmonisation’ as a policy solution was born in a train between London and Paris in a conversation between an economist and an accountant. While PE A did not remember any more details about the events surrounding this train ride, it seems plausible that they occurred in June 1999. PE A’s description matches the timing of the introduction of the first accrual budget cycle at the federal government level for the financial year 1999/2000 and the OECD’s annual meeting of Senior Budget Officials took place on 3-4 June 1999. The statement is also in accordance with the first written evidence found of the GAAP/GFS harmonisation project. This was in an AASB agenda paper from June 2000 (AASB 2000a). This agenda paper referred to the PSASB
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199 Consultative Group on the GPFR/GFS harmonisation project being briefed about the project in October 1999. Based on the obtained data and in the absence of any contradicting information, it is concluded that the above presentation of events are a plausible explanation of the genesis of the idea of GAAP/GFS harmonisation. The described events show that the PEs used their background ideational abilities to critically reflect on and evaluate public sector accounting issues. Their exposure to both micro-economic accounting and macro-economic statistical financial reporting gave them a deeper understanding of the two accounting frameworks. They realised that the differences were not as big as previously thought and that a ‘harmonisation’ might lead to synergy effects. 7.4 SUMMARY AND CONCLUSION This chapter addressed the first research question: 1. What was the historic institutional context in which the policy idea of ‘GAAP/GFS harmonisation’ was identified? The chapter demonstrated that until 1999, the dual GAAP and GFS reporting regime was not seen as a major issue. At the federal government level, the formal agenda was dominated by issues such as the adoption of accrual accounting and the scope of financial statements and ministerial portfolios. At the standard setting level, the development of accounting standards AAS 27, AAS 29 and AAS 31 dominated the PSASB agenda during the early and mid-1990s. During the late 1990s, a review of these standards in the light of the looming introduction of international accounting standards preoccupied the agenda of the standard setters. While the PSASB was aware of the dual GAAP and GFS reporting regime and pursued a strategy of close consultation with Treasury and the ABS, the
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200 data analysis suggested that the two frameworks were seen as competitive and serving different purposes. Any discussions were focused on avoiding differences where possible and the potential of reconciliation statements. There was, however, no
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  • Fall '13
  • Government, The Land, International Financial Reporting Standards, Financial Accounting Standards Board, Australian Accounting Standards Board, Snow

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