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primary steps which the U.S. needs to take to help achieve

harmonization:

first,

support

the

lASe

comparability

project;

and,

second, reorient the U.S. standard setting process to reflect the

importance of international considerations.

The most important step the U.S. needs to take to play its proper

role in achieving international accounting harmonization is to definitively

reject the mind-set that harmonization is a theoretically attractive, but

practically

unobtainable,

goal.

The

IASC's

efforts

in

fact

present

a

realistic and concrete opportunity to achieve many of the benefits of harmonization in a reasonable time frame. The U.S. should act promptly

to support the lASe efforts.

lASe standards have no legal authority except to the extent they

are adopted by the authorities of individual countries. The SEC,through

IOSCO, has actively participated in the IASC's comparability project.

U.S. regulators and standard setters have not yet indicated, however, at

least publicly, that they would be willing to support the standards that

are ultimately developed by the lASe.

The U.S. should provide public support for the IASC's efforts to

develop acceptable international standards; it should participate

constructively in these efforts; and it should be prepared after the lASe

efforts are completed to recognize financial statements of foreign

companies that are prepared in accordance with or reconciled to the

16

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