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CHAPTER ONE INTRODUCTION
1.1 Background to the Study
Accounting standards have changed greatly over the past decades with regard to the consistently
increasing emphasis placed on measurement of assets base on fair valuation and pressing need
for harmonization. However, in order to address the need of various users of financial
information, locally formulated standards limit the ability to undertake cross boarder
comparison. Therefore, the need for harmonizing of global financial accounting increased. The
journey for the international harmonization toward a unique and global set of accounting
standards started in 1973 when 16 professional accounting bodies agree to form the International
Accounting Standard Committee (IASC).
The rationale behind the formation of the Committee was to produce and issue the International
Accounting Standards (IAS) which came out of necessity to encourage growth in trade and
investment between countries around the globe. The Committee was reorganized in 2001 to
become International accounting Standard Board (IASB) which develops and issues International
Financial Reporting Standards (IFRSs). Consensus has been reached that quality of accounting
reporting is paramount to the information users for various decisions making purposes. IFRSs are
increasingly becoming more acceptable set of regulations followed by many countries. In an
effort to increase comparability, European Union mandated the adoption of IFRS to all its public
entities in 2005. It is reported that more than 130 countries conformed to IFRSs as domestic
reporting standards with 90 countries fully adopted (PWC, 2016).
Prior to international financial reporting standards, different countries develop their own
standards locally and also to a certain extent adopt or adapt that of the other countries. In
Nigeria, National Accounting Standard Board (NASB) develop and issue Statements of
Accounting Standards (SAS) which are popularly known as Generally Accepted Accounting
Principles (GAAP). These standards cut across various aspect of accounting activities such as
recognition, measurements, and reporting of accounting transactions of various form of business
activities. Therefore, SAS play a vital role in regulating the activities of accounting locallydue to
the fact that financial reporting practicebefore IFRS depend on legal, economic, cultural and
historical background of any country.
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