EU-endorsement experts named

The EU has set up a board of technical experts, the European Financial Reporting Advisory Group, which will vet International Accounting Standards before they are adopted in Europe. The EFRAG is one arm of the EU's controversial endorsement mechanism, which will screen International Financial Reporting Standards at a political and technical level. Goran Tidstrom, president of the Fédération des Experts Comptables Européens, says that EFRAG's primary role will be to 'make sure that a European view is defined and fed into the International Accounting Standards Board's initiatives at the earliest possible stage'.

However, EFRAG will also advise the EU on whether or not new IFRSs should be adopted. To ensure that the technical board's individual members 'work in the European interest', the EU has attached a supervisory board to EFRAG, with Tidstrom in the chair.

Some experts are concerned that the role of the technical committee is only advisory and that the EU politicial tier - the Accounting Regulatory Committee and the European Commission - will be vulnerable to pressure from EU member states.

EFRAG has been assembled by several European organisations including FEE and consists of 11 experts, including Stig Enevoldsen, former chair of the International Accounting Standards Committee. It is chaired by Johan van Helleman, chairman of the Dutch standard-setter and a partner at KPMG.

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