Business registration made easy | Sunday Observer

Business registration made easy

Opening a new chapter in Sri Lanka’s private sector development, incorporation of a new company is now possible from the comfort of one’s own home and the Department of Registrar of Companies too has reported an increase in revenue.

“Name reservation of companies could be obtained online. Company registrations and incorporation could be done online and there is no need for physical attendance at the Department of Registrar of Companies,” said Minister of Industry, Commerce, Resettlement of Protracted Displaced Persons, Cooperative Development, Skills Development and Vocational Training, Rishad Bathiudeen in Parliament last week.

Minister Bathiudeen was addressing the House on amendments to Regulations under the Public Contract Act moved by him in Parliament.

The fees payable (excluding VAT) on four types of contracts have been amended. The new fee is Rs. 2,000 for registration as an agent, sub-agent, representative or nominee for or on behalf of a tenderer, Rs. 10,000 for registration of a public contract, Rs. 2,000 for renewal of a registration and the new fee of Rs. 10,000 for application for re-registration of a public contract.

The regulations were made with the concurrence of the President under Section 36 of the Public Contracts Act No. 3 of 1987, and the regulations published in the Gazette Extraordinary No. 508/7 of June 2, 1988 last amended by the Gazette Extraordinary No. 1773/36 of August 30, 2012 further amended and published in the Gazette Extraordinary No. 2055/18 of January 24, 2018.

Minister Bathiudeen said, “Registration can be easily done at home if one has a computer with internet facilities. A Society’s registrations could be done online since January. Registration of auditors too can be done online. Card payments are also accepted.

“Overseas companies and off-shore companies can be registered online. The Department of Registrar of Companies plays a key role in the economy of the country. Except for the salaries of officials other expenses related to the department are met through the company fund. In 2017, the Department of Registrar of Companies earned a revenue of about Rs. 600 million and in 2018 it was Rs 664 million,” he said.

In the World Bank’s 2019 Doing Business index, Sri Lanka has been ranked at 100 among 190 countries. The ‘Starting a Business Indicator’ of Ease of Doing Business ranking for Sri Lanka (at 87.87 out of 100) showed the country ranked second in South Asia just after Maldives (at 89.17).

South Asian regional average for Starting a Business Indicator is 85.44. The 2018 revenue of the Department of Registrar of Companies increased by 11% (from 2017) to Rs. 664 mn.