Global Business

New FEI Group to Chime In on International Standards

The object is to give executives from a range of companies a voice on issues growing out of reporting convergence.
Roy HarrisJune 5, 2008

Seeking to give a voice to corporate executives in the drive toward reporting convergence, Financial Executives International created a group to study related issues and make recommendations as the replacement of generally accepted accounting principles draws closer.

FEI designated the new body the Corporate Roundtable on International Financial Reporting (CRIFR), announcing it at the Global Financial Reporting Convergence Conference in New York. Charter members of CRIFR are Eli Lilly, Honeywell International, McGraw-Hill, Source Technologies, SMSC, and Tyco International, it said.

In an interview with CFO.com, Christine DiFabio, FEI vice president of technical activities, said that FEI members — who are all individuals, rather than companies — had expressed concerns about a broad range of issues growing out of the move to international financial reporting standards, starting with accounting, reporting, and taxation, but extending to government affairs, company infrastructure, and technology. “This charter group will prioritize these issues, and it will depend on the company which issues are most prominent,” she said, noting that small business and large multinationals all will be represented.

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“We’re not lobbying against anything here,” she said. “But we expect to present some of our thoughts to Washington.” She noted that the FEI membership sees implementation and operations issues as critical, and that the new group “is committed to working with standard setters and other government policymakers” on the challenges of convergence.

Among the executives active in the charter group are Honeywell’s Paul Cienki, vice president, government accounting and compliance; and Joseph S. Durko, vice president, corporate controller & CAO of semiconductor maker SMSC.

DiFabio said the group is seeking members among executives with small and large companies for CRIFR. “There are lots of questions, depending on the company, but the one question everyone has is when will we definitiely have to move to international standards,” she told CFO.com.

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