Keith Nuthall is a journalist specialising in international organisations, law and regulation


The integration of the Value Reporting Foundation (VRF) into the IFRS Foundation has been completed, boosting the operations of the foundation’s International Sustainability Standards Board (ISSB). The foundation said the continued use of business sector standards set by the VRF’s Sustainability Accounting Standards Board will encourage participation in ISSB projects. It will also help the foundation’s International Accounting Standards Board (IASB) to work with the ISSB in promoting connectivity between financial statements and sustainability disclosures under the IFRS integrated reporting framework.

The ISSB consultations into two proposed sustainability disclosure standards have closed. The board received more than 600 responses to its draft climate disclosure standard and more than 700 to its draft general requirements disclosure standard. The ISSB will assess the comments – which were received from ACCA, PwC, Deloitte, KPMG, EY and other major accounting organisations – as it drafts formal standards for release later this year.

In its response to the two ISSB consultations, the International Auditing and Assurance Standards Board (IAASB) said connections between ethical standards and the external assurance for sustainability reporting needed strengthening, with external assurance playing a key role in demonstrating that sustainability information is reliable and credible.

The European Financial Reporting Action Group (Efrag) has also completed a consultation on draft sustainability reporting standards for the European Union. It said it would be considering more than 750 submissions as it finalises its proposed standards to submit to the European Commission in November 2022 for approval in 2023.

The Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) and the UN Global Compact have released a new tool to aid reporting on UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The Business Reporting on the SDGs: An Analysis of the Goals and Targets 2022 guide includes metrics from 26 disclosure sources, including those developed by the CDP (Carbon Disclosure Project), SASB, UN Guiding Principles, World Benchmarking Alliance, World Business Council for Sustainable Development and the World Economic Forum.

IASB work plan

The IASB has outlined its strategic priorities for the next five years. It plans to:

  • increase efforts to develop digital financial reporting
  • improve the understandability and accessibility of IFRS Standards
  • add intangibles, cashflow statements and climate-related risk in financial statements to its work plan.

The IAASB has released a first-time implementation guide for ISA 315. The guide aims to help accountants understand and implement the substantial changes that have been made to this international auditing standard on material misstatement. It covers audits of financial statements for periods beginning on or after 15 December 2021.

Going concern

The IAASB has also released advice on matters of going concern in auditors’ reports. It particularly focuses on ISA guidance about the ‘material uncertainty related to going concern’ and ’key audit matters’ sections and how they interrelate.


The International Ethics Standards Board for Accountants (IESBA) has published guidance explaining key revisions to the non-assurance services provisions of its international code of ethics for professional accountants. New requirements include firms not providing any non-assurance service that might create a self-review threat to public interest entity audit clients.


The International Organization of Securities Commissions (Iosco) and the Bank for International Settlements’ committee on payments and market infrastructures have published guidance confirming that stablecoin arrangements should follow international standards for payment, clearing and settlement systems. Iosco and the committee noted that stablecoins may become an important bridge between crypto and fiat currencies.


Iosco has also published a report advising emerging market countries on how to establish innovation facilitators, such as innovation hubs, regulatory sandboxes and regulatory accelerators. Iosco advises care in establishing innovation facilitators, defining and disclosing their objectives and functions, and exchanging information with local and foreign relevant authorities.

Digital platform

The International Federation of Accountants (IFAC) is seeking comments on improving its e-International Standards (eIS) platform, which gives digital access to standards and resources developed by the IAASB, IESBA and the International Public Sector Accounting Standards Board (IPSASB). IFAC wants users to rank the features they would like to see in future updates to the platform, and to offer their own enhancement suggestions.