The Difference Between IFRS and IAS

This is the question that oftentimes pops up from a middle of nowhere.... What basically are the differences between the International Financial Accounting Standards (IFRS) and International Accounting Standards (IAS)? Or, should we rephrase the question, are there any differences at all?

This is the question that oftentimes pops up from a middle of nowhere…

What basically are the differences between the International Financial Accounting Standards (IFRS) and International Accounting Standards (IAS)? Or, should we rephrase the question, are there any differences at all?

Well, there are differences, of course. And the major difference is that the IAS’s were issued by the International Accounting Standards Committee (IASC) from 1973 to 2001, while the IFRS’s were issued by the International Accounting Standards Board (IASB) from 2001 onwards. The IASB is basically the successor for IASC.

When IASB was installed in 2001, it adopted the existing IAS and decided to name any future standards as International Financial Reporting Standards. Consequently, IAS 1 Presentation of Financial Statements defines IFRS as standards and interpretations adopted by the IASB.

Now, IFRS in a broad sense comprise:

  • Framework for the Preparation and Presentation of Financial Statements – stating basic principles and grounds of IFRS
  • International Financial Reporting Standards (standards issued after 2001)
  • International Accounting Standards (standards issued before 2001)
  • Interpretations originated by the International Financial Reporting Interpretations Committee (IFRIC) or the former Standing Interpretations Committee (SIC)

In My Humble Opinion (IMHO)

I have to be explicit that these are just my opinions. If you trust it, then thank you. If not, then make your own research! (LOL!)

So the new IFRSs standards are in addition to (on top of) the IASs, won’t there be any contradicting standards/principles between the two as a result of the adoption of IFRS?

Just as the former IASC altered some of its provisions and withdres some IAS numbers from its set of standards over the years, any contradicting principles from the new IFRS will supersede that of IAS. One basic example is the IFRS 3 and IAS 22, which are both titled, “Business Combinations”.

Of course, there are standards in the IFRS that provide rule over some grey areas or a “no mention” in the IAS, just like the identification, measurement, presentation and disclosure of non-current assets held for sale (IFRS 5).

In fact, when contradicting standards are issued, the older one is removed from the complete set of standards. Look at the latest complete list of standards and IAS 22 is not there anymore.

I have been full compliant with IAS in the previous years, do I still have to apply IFRS 1 (First Time Adoption of IFRS), and thus present comparative information and other disclosures required by IFRS 1 in my next financial statements?

Under the Scope of the standard, paragraph 3, if you have not stated compliance with IFRS in an “explicit” and “unreserved” statement in any of your previous financial statements, then you have to comply with and follow the disclosure requirements of IFRS 1. If you have been full compliant with IAS, then preparing the disclosure requirements of IFRS 1 would not be that cumbersome.


Try googling for the difference between IFRS and IAS, and it will lead you nowhere. I mean, basically there are no resources in the internet that can give you a precise distinction between the two. Such question just seems like improper. It’s like comparing a chicken against an egg, when in fact the former just simply evolved from the latter. You can’t plainly make a head-to-head comparison.

Remember, comparing IFRS vs. IAS is not like comparing IFRS vs. US GAAP. The latter is completely a different story.


franz January 17, 2007 Reply

Heto na naman tayo para sa mga talented na tao lang ito… Di naman puede NVIDIA vs. ATI dito… yugs…

Val January 17, 2007 Reply

Nice article

deuts January 17, 2007 Reply

O Val, nice to hear from you after some time. Thanks for the compliment.

Val January 18, 2007 Reply

parati naman akong bumisita sa site mo. binabasa ko mga comments kaya lang minsan walang kwenta ang mga comments kaya di ako sumasagot pero in fairness maganda mga pino-post mong mga topic. informative

deuts January 18, 2007 Reply

naks naman! touched nmn ako nun! hehehe kmusta na ba si pare mong joel?

franz January 18, 2007 Reply

Yun yun eh… kumusta pareng Val?

Val January 19, 2007 Reply

Si Joel? Syempre negro pa rin.

Franz ok lang ako pare. di na tayo nakapag lalaro ikaw na lang di ko nalalampaso sa nbalive

franz January 19, 2007 Reply

Hehehe yun yun eh. Maiba nga ako pre, pista nga pala kina jorelle sa Sunday, punta daw tayo he he he. Pareng Jorelle panu ba yan di mo makikita si baby girl…

deuts January 19, 2007 Reply

oo nga noh! pista pala samin! imbitado kau lahat! punta kau sa bahay hanapin nyo lng ako! hehehe ung address namin sa Tupan St., Tigbauan, Iloilo. Itong c franz e pag may ibang nakabasa nito eh. hehehehe

franz January 20, 2007 Reply

Yugs! Sadya ah. Sino ba yung tinutukoy mo pre? He he he.

Mike December 5, 2007 Reply

nice article, keep it up!

deuts December 5, 2007 Reply

Panong parang ngaun ka lng ulit naka comment dito eh ang tagal ko nang post to?

monique January 4, 2008 Reply

my lecturer gave the same qn. and i answed just like you, guese wat? I was the only one wit the correct and stupid answer. thanx dude!

deuts January 4, 2008 Reply

Ang galeng! 🙂

torton January 14, 2008 Reply

good lad!!

sweet March 26, 2008 Reply

bakit ngayon ko lang ito nadiscover?.. it’s true that googling on the difference between IAS and IFRS would lead you nowhere…

deuts March 26, 2008 Reply

@ Sweet, yeah, that’s why I posted this article to point that out. 😀

eirene May 15, 2008 Reply

haha, if there’s no answer to it, why did my lecturer ask us to come up with a 800 word essay on it?

deuts May 15, 2008 Reply

Well I hope this article will help you with that. 😀

Bonny May 19, 2008 Reply

Very well said that this is the only output that we get on our serah for Difference between IFRS and IAS despite the fact that this distinction is really important to have the complete clarity on IFRS. This is really very easy to understand and clarify the doubts. Very nicely made up.

deuts May 19, 2008 Reply

Thanks Bonny, I’m glad I can help people on anything about accounting and auditing.

Pablo August 8, 2008 Reply

If there are no articles in the internet that address that issue, please be the first one to have it on the web. We really need that answer. I mean a very correct answer

Matthew October 8, 2008 Reply

Hello there, I very much appreciated this article and was wondering if you could help with another question. I have been asked to critique an annual report from an investors perspective while keeping away from ratios and detailed financial analysis, Do you think that there are any particular areas of the report that would be most beneficial for this?


T. Roy November 4, 2008 Reply

I read out the artical regarding difference between IAS and IFRS. If I say in short then the above artical is a bad one. It is not enough informative so that one can easily understand the defference between two. Because time can not be a factor to defferentiate but the author tried to focus the time a big factor. If any body started to published any standard from now with the same content of IAS, will it be carry any any value for time difference?

If you done any more research on it please send it to me.

Pati December 15, 2009 Reply

uhmm..if the article above is wrong, then u put the correct version…cuz i really need it for my assignment in accounting. thnx

Toni March 19, 2009 Reply

Hey man thanks a lot, for this!
This is a very simple and logical explanation, which I needed.
I am writing an Essay on topic connected.

TH June 11, 2009 Reply

Well said, thanks for your explanation. Keep up the good work.

DS February 19, 2010 Reply

Thanks for clarifying this issue (IAS / IFRS)
I need this into for mine thesis.

Attah-K March 17, 2010 Reply

I also need to know the differences between the IFRS and IAS, for an assignment.

CA. Sushant Raul May 16, 2010 Reply

Basically there are no difference between IFRS and IAS, IFRS are the sucessor of IAS as the IASC is succeeded by IASB subsequently IAS are succeeded by IFRS………………
For any query about IFRS/IAS u people can mailed me in my mail ID

blackpepper June 13, 2010 Reply

thank you so much for your article 🙂

albert August 19, 2010 Reply

thank you deuts. this article is first on google

Victor August 20, 2011 Reply

I appreciate highly, this article. It’s so clear and to the point that i have no need to further research the issue. Thanks

Marlo September 18, 2011 Reply

Thank you for this! 🙂 I appreciate it! 🙂

Lek November 30, 2011 Reply

tanx a bunch 4 dis material. Resource-filled!

Asraful December 4, 2011 Reply

Thanks for the explanation & supply of better information.

Md.Shaidul Islam March 4, 2012 Reply

Thanks u for your best explanation of IAS & IFRS

Md.Shaidul Islam March 4, 2012 Reply

This is the better explanation of difference between IAS & Ifrs…………

Thank u

Johannes April 6, 2012 Reply

I’m now hightlighted on the difference betwenne IAS and IFRS.

guest 1 June 17, 2012 Reply

I believe
IAS defines the way accounting should be.
whereas IFRS contains the way they needs to be presented in Financial Statements.

Let me know if i m wrong

Faa July 10, 2013 Reply

well explained.

Pixandroid September 20, 2013 Reply

Thanks… I’d long time apart from financial reporting and now need to revise back. Thanks for this handy info.

nkrumah rockson October 13, 2013 Reply

thanks for helping me complete my assignment

deuts October 13, 2013 Reply

Glad to be of help

Barkha March 17, 2015 Reply

Thank you so much for such a simple explanation!! you rocked! 😉

Ujunwa May 28, 2015 Reply

I think in real preparation of the financial statement with IFRSs, there s some changes in the way and methods. So that should have serve as a difference therein.

Hazrat Safi April 1, 2016 Reply

Good practical example like comparing chicken with an egg
Now I’ve learned the difference between IAS and IFRS (chicken and egg) 😀

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