Scope of IAS 28 Investments in Associates and Joint Ventures

IAS 28 is a go-to standard when it comes to accounting for investments in associates. It also applies to equity accounting for investments in joint ventures, but joint ventures in general are covered in IFRS 11. Equity method accounting is applicable in consolidated financial statements. Separate financial statements are covered in IAS 27, which lists equity accounting as one of the alternatives, but accounting at cost is also allowed (and most common). However, if an investor does not have any subsidiaries, but has interest in associates and/or joint ventures, IAS 28 effectively requires to prepare financial statements where these investments are equity accounted, even though such statements will not be consolidated financial statements (as there are no subsidiaries to consolidate). Such financial statements are often called ‘economic interest’ financial statements.

IAS 28 requires accounting for investments in associates and joint ventures using the equity method (‘equity accounting’), unless the exemption similar to IFRS 10.4a applies (IAS 28.17).

Additional exemption relates to investments in associates held by or through venture capital organisations, mutual fund and similar entities (IAS 28.18-19).

IFRS 12 is a comprehensive standard that covers all disclosure requirements relating to interests in other entities.

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