The Investment Promotion Authority has recently submitted a proposal to the Registrar of Companies to exercise administrative powers in waiving parts of the accumulated compliance fees affecting all companies in the Autonomous Region of Bougainville.
A review of IPA records reveals that close to 100% of the companies in the Autonomous Region of Bougainville have not complied with the reporting requirements of the Companies Act 1997, due in large parts to the 1988 crisis.
Companies Act 1997. Section 412(1)(b) reads:
‘The registrar may suspend, in whole or in part and, on such terms and conditions as the registrar from time to time considers appropriate, payment by the company of any or all of the other fees or amounts prescribed under Section 411 while the company remains such a company.’
Businesses burdened by accumulated compliance fees and issues could discourage potential business activities, and in turn, affect the region’s economy as a whole.
Considering the case of the Autonomous Region of Bougainville & the Papua New Guinean government’s commitment to rehabilitate business activities within the region, the Investment Promotion Authority will be providing compliance fee relief options.
There are a total of 1,896 companies in Bougainville. 56% of these are de-registered due to a lack of compliance in terms of annual return lodgement for periods including the years of the Bougainville crisis and following years.
The deregistered companies will seek reinstatements as most hold properties under these companies.
Apart from those deregistered, more than 800 companies maintain operating statuses. The accumulated compliance requirements of the Act also show to be burdensome even for companies currently operation in the region.