PRETORIA– South African Trade and Inudtsry Minister Rob Davies has launched the Companies and Intellectual Property Commission’s Extensible Business Reporting Language (XBRL) aimed at boosting the ease of doing business and financial reporting.

The launch of the digital financial reporting solution on Tuesday will allow companies to file their Annual Financial Statements using XBLR, and the data can be shared across the regulatory spectrum for multiple purposes.

South Africa is among the first countries on the continent to introduce this financial and regulatory reporting technology.

Davies said while there were many challenges with the Fourth Industrial Revolution, it did offer the possibilities of improving governance.

Digital financial reporting is introduced via the internationally acknowledged best-practice technology standard. XBRL is for electronic communication of business information and it simplifies the preparation and analysis of data, providing major benefits in the communication of annual financial statements. [It is] a step towards absolute connectivity between all our entities, he added.

Using XBRL will align the submission of annual financial statements with that of the global reporting standards for businesses. The programme will also mitigate the administrative burden on businesses when reporting financial information to government for regulatory compliance.

This system has the capacity to ensure that there is integrity in the financial reporting mechanism to different agencies in government. Furthermore, it supports greater transparency, improves the efficiency of capital markets by assisting analysts, financial and security regulators, business registrars, tax authorities and other users to access the relevant facts, said Davies.