Zimbabwe to have online company registration by July

Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs Minister Ziyambi Ziyambi

Government is expected to implement an on-line registry system for the establishment of local and foreign companies by end of July in line with the provisions of the proposed new Companies Act, a Cabinet minister has said.

The new bill seeks to replace and update the law on companies and private business corporations. The current Companies Act was passed in 1951 and is not in sync with the modern business trends and initiatives. This has seen the country lagging behind in terms of investments and development.

Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs Minister Ziyambi Ziyambi said the draft companies and other business entities bill would place Zimbabwe within the global digital registration trends.

Minister Ziyambi was speaking during a stakeholders’ workshop to review the draft Companies and Other Business Entities Amendment Bill attended by high-ranking Government officials and captains of industry and commerce.

“The Bill will be tabled before Parliament before elections and seeks to reform laws that inhibit doing business,” said Minister Ziyambi.

The Minister said that ease of doing business was crucial in the country’s economic growth and recovery.

“It goes without saying that when rules and regulations are business-friendly, setting up businesses is made easier for not just big companies but also smaller ones that have less capital and resources at their disposal,” he said.

Minister Ziyambi said the restrictive regulatory framework for setting up and even operating businesses in the country had discouraged foreign direct investments.

“It also limited access to economic opportunities and stimulated corruption,” he said.

“The new political dispensation made key policy initiatives which are effectively opening the country for business.”

Zimbabwe is ranked 159 out of 190 economies on the ease of doing business index, according to the latest World Bank annual ratings. The ease of doing business index ranks countries against each other based on how the regulatory environment is conducive to business operations.

It is apparent that in the previous administration the country’s regulatory framework had not been conducive and the results and dire ramifications are there for everyone to see.