Ghana Parliament to amend business registeration laws for e-transactions

Parliament is set to amend various business registeration laws to provide for electronic transactions in line with government’s e-Governance project.

The project aims at modernizing key ministries, departments and agencies (MDAs) to support the provision of citizen-friendly services through ICT.

Three amendment bills, including the Registeration of Business Names (Amendment) bill 2011 and the Companies (Amendment) bill 2011 are before the House for amendment.

A report of Parliament’s Constitutional, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs Committee said the amendment of the Registeration of Business Names (Amendment) bill will permit the electronic filing and registration of business names.

“The electronic registeration of business names has become necessary because the e-Governance project which is linked with the Ghana Revenue Authority to effect the implementation of e-governance system insists on a unique tax identification number of the sole proprietor engaged in the registeration process..” the report said.

This, it said, is to “make it possible for the identification of the sole proprietor promoting the business and also avoid the duplication of tax returns.”

According to the report, the commencement of the electronic registeration process by the Registrar-General’s Department is not provided for in any legislation hence the need to urgently amend the law to address difficulties and anticipated suits.

The government under the e-Governance project envisaged mainstreaming ICT into all aspects of governance, in this regard the Registrar-General’s Department began the electronic registeration of business names in December last year to facilitate the effective renewal of business names by the end of this year.

In this regard, the amendment of all business related laws including the Companies (Amendment) bill 2011 and the Private Partnership (Amendment) bill have become necessary in order to regularize the initiative taken by the Department.

By Eunice Menka

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