March 17, 2020 / 4:31 PM / 22 days ago

Insurers get until 2023 to implement new accounting rule

LONDON (Reuters) - Insurers have been given an extra two years to implement a new accounting rule aimed at increasing visibility into how they make money.

The International Accounting Standards Board (IASB) said on Tuesday it has approved delaying its new rule until 2023, following a request from the industry in 2018.

“Timely implementation of IFRS 17 is vital to improve the quality and comparability of accounting for insurance contracts,” the IASB said in a statement.

The rule aims to prise open what critics have called the “black box” of insurance accounting where a plethora of national practices abound.

Alex Bertolotti, who tracks IFRS 17 at consultants PwC, said the delay recognises the practical difficulties many insurers face in implementing significant changes.

“The additional time will also be welcome as insurers consider how they can use IFRS 17 to tell a clearer and more understandable story about their company,” Bertolotti said.

IASB rules are used in over 100 countries, including the European Union and Britain, but not in the United States, which sets its own rules.

Reporting by Huw Jones; Editing by Alexandra Hudson

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