22. March 2018

European Commission launches consultation on public reporting in Europe

On 21 March 2018, the European Commission launched the second phase of the consultation on the evaluation of public reporting in Europe (Fitness check on the EU framework for public reporting by companies) by releasing a questionnaire. The consultation covers the following areas:

  • an overall assessment of the European Financial Reporting Framework (coherence, added value for Europe);
  • an examination of the Financial Reporting Framework in relation to cross-border companies, SMEs and the relevance of the content of financial reporting, irrespective of the sector in which the companies operate;
  • an assessment of the European Financial Reporting Framework for listed companies with a focus on the IAS Regulation and the Transparency Directive;
  • an evaluation of the European Financial Reporting Framework for regulated enterprises (Bank Accounts and Insurance Accounting Directives);
  • a consideration of the non-financial reporting framework with the dimensions of NFI Directive, integrated reporting and country-by-country reporting by extractive and logging industries; and
  • challenges of digitalisation (impact of electronic structured reporting, data storage mechanisms and coherence with other Commission dossiers in this area).

The consultation runs until 21 July 2018 and can be accessed via the following link: https://ec.europa.eu/info/consultations/finance-2018-companies-public-reporting_en. On this page, the Commission also provides background information on the evaluation. The consultation is currently only available in English, but German and French will follow.

The ASCG responded to the preceding roadmap on 8 March (see our earlier news). A positive aspect of the consultation is the extension of the original three-month survey for another month. The President of the ASCG, Prof Dr Andreas Barckow, comments on the survey itself as follows:

“A quick glance at the questionnaire conveys the impression that this consultation is a politically desired result. Many questions lack a neutral attitude; they rather convey the impression that the reader should be guided to a certain answer. Explanatory justifications are often only possible or necessary for one of the answer alternatives, whereas in the other cases they are not queried or allowed. Such an approach raises doubts about the questioner’s neutrality and represents an influence on the interviewee that is not apparent to me.

In the coming months, the ASCG will engage extensively with the consultation in its two Technical Committees and in the Administrative Board and will prepare its responses to the consultation. I would like to take this opportunity to encourage all companies and associations to participate in this consultation and to cooperate with the ASCG. It seems to me of great importance that the German business community raises its voice in this important survey and sends a clearly audible signal to Brussels.”