MIX Microfinance Taxonomy comments
Possible changes to the MIX Microfinance Taxonomy 1.0 as it moves from PUBLIC WORKING DRAFT (“MIX PWD”) to FINAL status.
In order to promote successful use of the MIX PWD, we detail below several changes that may be made for the final version. They are divided into two sections: XBRL technical considerations, and IFRS reporting considerations.
We welcome your comments on these at firstname.lastname@example.org, as well as receiving other suggestions.
XBRL Technical Considerations:
Refactoring the dimensions. Currently, all Microfinance Taxonomy concepts are defined in a single namespace (mix). It has been suggested that the concepts and basic structures of the dimensions (i.e., dimension-domain, domain-default, and domain-member arcs) be further modularized such that a unique taxonomy is created for each. The objectives are two: simplify the reuse of dimensions for extensions to the Microfinance Taxonomy, including the incorporation of other IFRS statements; and further distinguish core reporting concepts from those of dimensional purpose. We are considering this change for the final version of the taxonomy.
Reducing the number of primary items. Every public taxonomy represents an attempt at standardizing a data model (or ontology). This taxonomy is no exception. Towards that end we generously populated the hypercubes with many primary items. For reasons of simplification, it has been suggested that we reduce this, as anyone extending the taxonomy may easily establish those relationships. We are considering this change for the final version of the taxonomy.
Foreign language labels. We plan to add foreign language labels for IFRS concepts when available, and similar translations for extended / MIX concepts. The primary languages will be Spanish, French, Arabic, with Russian, Chinese and others subject to availability.
Regarding FRTA compliance. The MIX PWD is FRTA compliant except for its use of unregistered or nonstandard roles for labels (as it uses label from IFRS 2009) and also because it uses XBRL Dimensions. We have noticed that several XBRL validators give conflicting FRTA reports, i.e., they report false violations (some of which are in the TRTF testing suite list). The only FRTA violations are 3.1.3, as noted above. We are not sure if we can address the problem of erroneous FRTA validation reports.
IFRS Reporting Considerations:
Revised and more intuitive income statement presentation. In the draft taxonomy, we have attempted to follow IFRS presentation closely for the main financial statements. However, in some ways the IFRS presentation does not align with our historical presentation of microfinance financial statements. We are investigating ways to adjust the presentation that do not violate relationships from the base IFRS taxonomy. Given that we can still report the relevant facts within this framework, we have left the presentation for future resolution.
Distinction between operating and non-operating activities. Historically, we have attempted to separate microfinance from non-microfinance activities in our data collection, a distinction that does not necessarily align with standard accounting treatment of operating and non-operating (or extraordinary) activities. We will need to align the concepts and dimensions with a more coherent framework that still allows analysis of segmented microfinance activities.
Additional disclosures for microfinance sector. We are considering additional financial and non-financial information for activities relevant to the microfinance sector. This covers the operations of institutions providing loan servicing, multi-service institutions (e.g. combining financial services, training, consulting, etc.) or holding companies, and additional products such as leasing, insurance.