Doing Business in the Middle East: International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRSs) in Arabic
This book is a translation of standards issued by the International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRSs) Foundation. The Foundation works closely with those establishing accounting standards in various countries, including the US Financial Accounting Standards and the Accounting Standards Board of Japan, with a view to promoting convergence between the national accounting standards in each country and the International Financial Reporting Standards. This handbook is considered the first academic reference unifying IFRSs and a guide for accountants.
This handbook contains all International Accounting Standards (IASs 1-41) issued by the Board, the International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRSs 1-13), the Interpretations of the Standing Interpretations Committee (SIC) and the Interpretations of the International Financial Reporting Interpretation Committee.
IASCA has held a license from the IFRS Foundation to translate, print and publish these standards since 1998.
Why IASCA translates the IFRS Standards (IFRSs)
IASCA translates and disseminates these publications due to their importance in giving further credibility to financial statements and by providing rules and principles of written practice to the profession, both for easy reference and outlining principles of practice. In addition, IASCA desires to prepare an accurate translation to help non-English speakers easily understand the content of these materials, and to circulate and disseminate it to advance the profession of auditing and accountancy, simplify their application and use, and to protect and maintain professional independence of accountants and auditors.
Stages and management of the translation process
A high level of professionalism and attention is paid by IASCA to the process of translating IFRSs Standards. The translation process starts with a list of terms being prepared by a team of CPA (Certified Public Accountant) and IACPA (International Arab Certified Public Accountant) holders; these terms are then circulated to the translation taskforce. The Committee of Arabic Translation Revision, a group of translation specialists representing most Arab countries, are highly qualified and review the translation before publication to help the Arab world benefit from such quality translations.
Furthermore, IASCA prepares an accurate translation that helps non-English speakers easily understand the content. Translations are supervised and reviewed by the following Revision Committee:
- Mr. Talal Abu-Ghazaleh: head of The Arab Society of Certified Accountants (IASCA), Cairo (Chairman)
- Dr. Osama Tabarah: associate and general manager of Osama Tabarah Offices, certified accountants, The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (First Vice Chairman)
- Mr. Antwan Matar: certified accountant, former associate of Arthur Anderson, London (Second Vice Chairman)
- Mr. Abed Al-Kareem Ahmad Al-Za’aroni: United Arab Emirates Accountants & Auditors Association (member)
- Dr. Talal Sageney: accounting and auditing professor at King Abd Al-Aziz University, The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (member)
- Dr. Rasha Anwar Hamadah: Professor at The Faculty of Economy, Damascus University, Syria (member)
- Mr. Imad Hafeth Rajab: associate member of Earnest & Young, Egypt (member)
- Mr. Adnan Jeries Khleif: executive partner of Khleif & Partners, member of Moore Stephens International, Jordan (member)
Challenges faced by IASCA during the translation process:
New terms with no equivalent in Arabic.
Specialised professional terms require IASCA to refer to professional bodies in the field of accounting and auditing, enabling them to understand the meaning of the term in order to clarify it in the translated book or text.
The possibility of encountering a term that does not hold the same meaning for Arab readers in different countries and territories.
IASCA overcome these problems by:
Consulting specialised websites, as well as online financial and accounting dictionaries, to first determine the meaning in English, and then coin an Arabic word that would most closely reflect that meaning.
Referring to an expert auditor in order to determine the exact meaning of specialised terminology. Sometimes, different accountants are consulted regarding an unfamiliar term to get acquainted with various opinions allowing IASCA to choose the most appropriate meaning.
Preparing a glossary of the new terms after the review committee meets to define such terms, then circulating that glossary to all translators and revisers in order that all future translations comply.
Ensuring that everyone complies with the definitions issued by the review committee and observes consistency.
IASCA conducts numerous orientation and marketing activities to promote and disseminate these standards in Arabic, including seminars, professional conferences and specialised training courses in the Arab world, targeting university students, accountants, academics and professionals.
Note: It is worth mentioning that in November 2013, IASCA issued the latest translated version of the IFRSs in Arabic, as it always seek to develop the competence and practice to the highest professional levels by focusing on accounting publications and following the latest developments in the accounting and auditing professions.