Subject: Accounting Theory and Current Issues
Assignment Title: Adoption of IFRSs and CSR Reporting
word limit: 3,000 words ± 500 words
This assignment aims at developing the student’s ability to critically examine the financial reporting regulations for reporting entities in Australia or any one country of choice, and the effect of adopting IFRSs (global accounting standards). They will also need to compare and contrast a real-life company’s corporate social responsibility (CSR) reporting and recommend future directions to the Australian financial reporting regulators. Students will have to research relevant academic literature, including related organisation websites and write in-text citations in this assignment. Additionally, they will demonstrate understanding and critical evaluation of the Australian financial reporting environment and its current regulatory framework, and recommend future directions to the Australian financial reporting regulators.
- Choose a country that has adopted IFRSs (i.e. global accounting standards) for at least 3 or more years, as revealed in the accounting literature, and discuss the following:
- In what year did the country adopt IFRSs?
- Were the IFRSs introduced all together (at once), or gradually into the local accounting standards of your chosen country? Explain the possible reason.
- Discuss the benefits and challenges reported in the literature about the adoption of IFRSs in your chosen country.
- Choose a publicly listed company from your chosen country above that you can access their annual report, including financial statements and notes to the accounts. (e.g. Choose a company that is listed in the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX) if you chose Australia; or Hong Kong Exchange if you chose Hong Kong etc.). Find and download the financial statements for two (2) years as follows:
- 1st financial statement – Choose the year immediately before IFRSs adoption and
- 2nd financial statement – Choose either 2019 or 2018 only.
Compare the two (2) years’ financial statements and accompanying notes to the accounts selected above, and discuss the following:
- Identify and discuss any remarkable changes to the disclosures relating to any two of the following financial aspects:
- Non-Current Assets
- Intangible Assets
- Employee Benefits
- Express your opinion about the usefulness of the new format of disclosures compared to the disclosures at the pre-adoption of IFRSs. Include examples to support your opinion.
- Discuss key trends in Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), as reviewed in the literature in the past 5 years. (Word limit: approx. 500 – 800 words).
- Choose one company listed on the ASX and obtain its latest annual report (incl. financial statements). Compare and contrast the extent of CSR reporting by your chosen company with your review of the literature (above in 1.), by answering the following questions:
- Evaluate the company’s extent of CSR reporting. (Include in your discussion, specific evidence of CSR disclosures, e.g. environmental etc.).
- Using one relevant accounting theory (e.g. PAT, Legitimacy Theory, Stakeholder Theory), explain why particular CSR disclosures were made by your chosen company.
- In your opinion, is there scope for improvement in CSR reporting by your company? Explain with two specific examples.
- Based on your findings, provide two (2) recommendations to the Australian financial reporting regulators about the future of CSR reporting that will guide Australian public entities in the future.
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