After many years of intensive and controversial discussions, in July 2009 the International Accounting Standards Board (IASB) has published a uniform international accounting standard for small and medium enterprises. This IFRS for SMEs (International Financial Reporting Standards for Small and Medium-sized Entities) has been developed specifically for the needs of SMEs and has been simplified in many ways compared to the full IFRS. Thus, the IASB responded to the increasing importance of international accounting standards for SMEs, caused by the emerging internationalization in SMEs, the complex requirements of financing and the possibilities of harmonizing the internal and external accounting.Whereas a lot of countries, especially outside Europe, show a high interest in the ?short standard? and have partly already transferred it into national law, in the german area it heavily competes with the national accounting standards (dHGB /UGB). The standard gets more and more criticized by german experts who deny its suitability for SMEs to some extent. Against this background, this thesis deals with the central question: What are the advantages and disadvantages of the use of international accounting standards in small and medium-sized enterprises? Hence, this paper has the aim to examine the factors and effects, which speak for or against an implementation of the IFRS for SMEs in small and medium enterprises considering the current literature and the opinions in Austria and Germany. It specifically addresses the particular needs of small and medium-sized enterprises and puts an emphasis on the comparison to the conventional national accounting system (UGB).