Disclosure initiative—Principles of Disclosure

Current Status Next Steps

IASB is discussing the remaining steps of the project.

IASB to publish a summary of research findings.


The Accounting Standards Board (AcSB) is participating in the International Accounting Standards Board’s (IASB) project to identify disclosure issues and address them by developing new, or clarifying existing, principles of disclosure in IFRS Standards.

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With this project, the IASB aims to:

  • help entities apply better judgment and communicate information more effectively;
  • improve the effectiveness of disclosures for the primary users of financial statements; and
  • provide guidelines for improving disclosure requirements in IFRS Standards.

The AcSB’s due process includes ensuring that Canadian entities’ financial reporting needs are considered by the IASB and issuing the AcSB’s own exposure draft on each IASB proposal. In addition, the AcSB Chair is a member of the IASB’s Accounting Standards Advisory Forum and is advising the IASB on this project. Subject to the responses to the AcSB’s Exposure Draft on whether the IASB’s proposals are appropriate for application in Canada, the AcSB expects that the amendments will be incorporated into Canadian GAAP in accordance with the AcSB’s strategy of adopting IFRSs for publicly accountable enterprises.



AcSB Response – Discussion Paper – Principles of Disclosure
On October 2, 2017, the AcSB submitted a comment letter responding to the IASB’s Discussion Paper issued in March 2017. The letter expresses support for the IASB’s Principles of Disclosure project and commends the IASB for striving to improve communication in financial reporting through its Disclosure Initiative. It agrees that there is a disclosure problem and points out that all those involved in the financial reporting process, including standard setters themselves, have contributed to the problem and should work together to develop solutions. The letter disagrees with the IASB’s preliminary view that an entity should not be prohibited from including non-IFRS Standards information in its financial statements. The letter encourages the IASB to test and explore different methods of developing centralized disclosure objectives to ensure that any changes result in improved financial statement disclosure. Read the AcSB letter posted by the IASB.

AcSB Decision Summary – September 20-21, 2017
The Board reviewed and approved its response letter to the IASB® Discussion Paper, “Disclosure Initiative – Principles of Disclosure,” subject to drafting changes.

AcSB Decision Summary – July 13, 2017
The Board discussed key points to include in its response letter to the IASB’s Discussion Paper, “Disclosure Initiative – Principles of Disclosure.” As part of the discussion, the Board considered stakeholder feedback obtained through the Board’s outreach to date on this topic.

The Board encourages stakeholders to share their views on the Discussion Paper by submitting comment letters to the IASB by October 2, 2017 with a copy to the AcSB.

AcSB Decision Summary – May 16, 2017
The Board discussed some key areas of the IASB’s Discussion Paper, “Disclosure Initiative—Principles of Disclosure” on which the Board will seek stakeholder input to inform its response to the IASB. Specifically, the Board discussed the following sections of the Discussion Paper:

  • Section 1 – Overview of the ‘disclosure problem’ and the objective of this project;
  • Section 3 – Roles of the primary financial statements and the notes; and
  • Section 4 – Location of information

The Board encourages stakeholders to share their views on the Discussion Paper by registering to attend an AcSB roundtable discussion in Vancouver, Toronto, Montreal or virtually, and submitting comment letters to the IASB by October 2, 2017.

Roundtable – Stakeholders’ Views Sought on How to Improve Disclosures in IFRS Financial Statements
May 10, 2017. Register to attend the AcSB’s roundtable discussions to share your views on the IASB’s Discussion Paper on the Principles of Disclosure.

IASB Discussion Paper – Disclosure Initiative — Principles of Disclosure
April 4, 2017.  The IASB has issued a Discussion Paper that suggests principles to make disclosures in financial statements more effective.

Canadian stakeholders are encouraged to provide feedback directly to the IASB by October 2, 2017.


Disclaimer: This project summary has been prepared for information purposes only. Decisions reported are tentative and reflect only the current status of discussions on this project, which may change after further Board deliberations. Decisions to publish Handbook material are final only after a formal ballot process.