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International accounting harmonisation - A comparison of Spain, Sweden and Austria




Despite attempts to secure harmonisation of accounting practice, significant variations in accounting rules and practice continue to arise in European countries, variations which give rise to compliance costs for multinational companies. Firstly, this paper considers the relevance of international accounting harmonisation for European business. It then proceeds to examine accounting regulation in three countries: Spain, Sweden and Austria, highlighting the key regulatory issues of the 'true and fair' view requirement and the link between taxation and accounting. The three countries are selected because of the interesting contrasts which they provide; these contrasts are examined in detail in the paper. The work is based upon a series of interviews carried out with leading accounting practitioners in the three countries during 1996-97. The paper concludes that there are significant obstacles to accounting harmonisation in Europe and that there is potential for continuing diversity of national accounting practice.

Suggested Citation

  • John Blake & Oriol Amat & Catherine Gowthorpe, 1998. "International accounting harmonisation - A comparison of Spain, Sweden and Austria," Economics Working Papers 294, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra.
  • Handle: RePEc:upf:upfgen:294

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Adela Deaconu & Dan Dacian Cuzdriorean, 2016. "Accounting and the state in post-communist Romania," African Journal of Accounting, Auditing and Finance, Inderscience Enterprises Ltd, vol. 5(1), pages 59-93.
    2. Bayou, Mohamed E. & Reinstein, Alan & Williams, Paul F., 2011. "To tell the truth: A discussion of issues concerning truth and ethics in accounting," Accounting, Organizations and Society, Elsevier, vol. 36(2), pages 109-124, February.
    3. George Emmanuel Iatridis & Daniel Senftlechner, 2014. "An Empirical Investigation of Goodwill in Austria: Evidence on Management Change and Cost of Capital," Australian Accounting Review, CPA Australia, vol. 24(2), pages 171-181, June.

    More about this item


    Accounting; harmonisation; international;

    JEL classification:

    • M41 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Accounting - - - Accounting


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