New expected credit loss model applies to intercompany loans

Most preparers of financial statements for 30 June 2019 are aware of the change in the way provisioning (impairment allowances) are calculated for financial assets such as loans receivable, trade debtors and contract assets under IFRS 15 Revenue from Contracts with Customers.

IFRS 9 Financial Instruments (“IFRS 9”), effective for periods beginning on or after 1 January 2018 (30 June 2019 year-ends), requires impairment allowances to be recognised on the basis of expected, rather than incurred, credit losses.

However, many are not aware that this new expected credit loss model (“ECL”) also applies to intercompany loans and key management personnel.


What types of intercompany loans are impacted?

Intercompany loans impacted by the new ECL model include those made to:

  • Subsidiaries
  • Joint ventures and associates
  • Other related parties, and
  • Key management personnel.

Applying IFRS 9 to related company loans can present a number of application challenges as they are often advanced on terms that are not arms-length or sometimes advanced on an informal basis without any terms at all. In addition, they can contain features that expose the lender to risks that are not consistent with a basic lending arrangement. Preparers need to be aware of these issues when applying IFRS 9.


Why loans to subsidiaries if these eliminate on consolidation?

While loans to subsidiaries eliminate on consolidation, and are therefore excluded from consolidated financial statements, they are relevant if parent financial statements are being prepared for any reason. 


Loans to joint ventures and associates

Many groups fund the operations of associates and joint ventures using long-term loan funding, rather than injecting equity. Such loans do not eliminate on consolidation and must be tested for impairment using the ECL model in the group financial statements.

Amendments to IAS 28 Investments in Associates and Joint Ventures (“IAS 28”) that come into effect for financial reporting periods beginning on or after 1 January 2019 also need to be noted. As a result of those amendments, it has been clarified that the process for determining impairment on long-term interests that in substance form part of the entity’s net investment in an associate or joint venture (and the equity method is not applied) is as follows:

Step 1  Determine if the interest is in the scope of IAS 28 or IFRS 9
Step 2  Apply IFRS 9 ECL model to the long-term interest
Step 3  Apply the equity method to the equity interests 
Step 4  Allocate any remaining losses to the long-term interest
Step 5  Apply IAS 28 imparment indicators to the net investment and, if there is objective evidence of impariment, apply IAS 36 

The amendments clarify that the ECL is applied to long-term interests before allocating any remaining equity accounted losses, and the final IAS 28 impairment test (based on the incurred loss model) is a catch all test which is conducted last.

These changes could have a significant impact on the carrying amount of long-term loans to associates and joint ventures because currently impairment testing is typically left until last and determined using the incurred loss rather than the ECL model.


Other related parties

Loans to other related parties also do not eliminate on consolidation and the ECL model must be applied to such balances in the consolidated financial statements.

Key management personnel – don’t forget disclosures

It is important to remember that the ECL model also applies to loans granted to key management personnel (“KMP”).

While expected credit losses on these loans may not be material in quantitative terms, they are likely to be considered qualitatively material. Additional disclosures are therefore required by IAS 24 Related Party Disclosures.

For each type of related party loan receivable, including loans to KMP, IAS 24, paragraph 18 requires entities to disclose information such as:

  • The amount of outstanding balances, and
  • Provisions for doubtful debts related to the amount of outstanding balances.

 

More information

BDO’s IFRS in Practice - Applying IFRS 9 to Related Company Loans sets out a summary of the key requirements of IFRS 9 (focusing on those that are likely to be most relevant to related company loans) and uses examples to illustrate how these requirements could be applied in practice.


For more on the above, please contact your local BDO representative.