Ghana ready to erase one million businesses out of the country

The government of Ghana has projected to erase some names of dormant companies that have registered in the country.,

Registrar General of Ghana, Mrs. Jemima Oware

This follows a large-scale cleaning up of the database of the Registrar-General’s Department.

The operation will take effect from the beginning of April 2019.

According to the Registrar General of Ghana, Mrs Jemima Oware, all businesses that have not filed their annual returns for more than a decade and are not on the e-register will be deleted from the register.

She said, “there are over one million businesses on my database that have not filed their annual returns. They just register for one-time, maybe for a visa or contract, and they do not bother to come back,” adding that, “It looks like we have a database of companies and half of them are not doing any serious business in Ghana, so we are trimming it down to know those that are really doing business.”

The Registrar General said this at the Ghana Association of Restructuring and Insolvency Advisors’ (GARIA) end of year cocktail reception at the Marriot Hotel, Accra, the capital of Ghana.

The Registrar Generals Department’s has an e-register, which was introduced almost 10 years ago. It now has more than 500,000 registered companies.

Mrs Oware has, therefore, urged all businesses that are yet to re-register to do so before April 2019 to avoid paying steep penalties and sanctions.

She said, “This electronic system keeps track of all businesses in Ghana, and if you are not updated into that system it means you have not been filing your annual returns, which is a mandatory requirement, and we cannot at the touch of a button have information on you.” 

All businesses or companies that will update their entities are also required to have unique tax identification numbers.

The authority has cautioned also that annual returns must come with financial statements, and then the business will be issued with new certificates and documentation.

“The idea is to winnow and strike out all businesses that are not doing serious business in Ghana, so we have a viable, credible and accurate database of businesses in Ghana that people can really trust and do business with,” Mrs Oware concluded.

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