More and more Ghanaians are opting for entrepreneurship over regular employment and the Ghanaian government is embracing it. Keep reading to find out how to register a company in Ghana.
How to Register a Company in Ghana
There are four kinds of companies that you can register in Ghana. There is the limited liability company, the unlimited liability company, the company limited by shares, and the company limited by guarantee.
Once you decide on the type of company that you want, you can start the registration process.
According to the law, you should not conduct business in Ghana before registering a company. Therefore, you will need the following before getting started:
- Name: you should get an appropriate name for your business. For instance, a limited liability company should end with the word “limited”
- Directors: companies should have at least two directors
- Shareholders: a company should have at least one shareholder
- Auditor: a company registering in Ghana should have an auditor
- Secretary: a company should also have a secretary
- Regulations: you should have a set of rules for your company
- Objects: this is the reason for creating your company. The objects must be lawful
Thereafter, submit your company name to the Registrar General’s Department (RGD) for a name search. If the name is available, you can reserve it for 30 days or you can go ahead with the application process. Conversely, submit a new name if the current one is unavailable.
How to Register a Business in Ghana
Now that you have a name, you should obtain this information:
- The names, tax identification numbers (TINs), nationalities, dates of birth, residential addresses, and occupations of the directors and shareholders
- The personal details of the secretary and the auditor
- The company’s office and post office box number
- The stated capital of the company
Next, proceed as follows:
- Firstly, download registration forms from the RGD
- Fill in forms three and four. Include the company regulations and the details of the company directors, shareholders, and secretary. Also, the directors should sign all the relevant pages
- Get a Commissioner of Oaths to authenticate form four
- Submit the forms to the RGD and pay the registration fees. These fees include the registration form fee, the registration fee, and the stamp duty. For example, the stamp duty is 0.5 percent of the stated company capital
The registration process will take approximately seven to 21 days. After this period, you will collect the certificate of incorporation, the certificate to commence business, forms three and four, and the company regulations. Moreover, the company will get a tax identification number.
These documents are important because they prove that you own a business in Ghana. Additionally, you can use them to open a company bank account and in other registration processes.
Registration with the Ghana Revenue Authority
To be tax compliant, you must register your incorporated company with the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA). To do this, take these steps:
- Get the registration forms from the Authority
- Fill the forms and submit them. You will need all your company documents and the CVs of the company directors
Revenue officers will then pay your office a visit for an inspection exercise. Thereafter, you will receive a VAT certificate. That means that your company can collect VAT and the National Health Insurance Levy (NHIL).
Furthermore, the company will receive a unique number with regards to paying domestic taxes such as income tax.
The company will pay a provisional tax in the first year of operation. The tax is calculated based on the company’s projected earnings. However, if the company did not make any income, it should file a nil return.
Also, the company should file VAT returns each month. The deadline for this filing is the 15th of the next month.
Social Security and National Insurance Trust Registration
The next step to registering a company in Ghana is to register with the Social Security and National Insurance Trust (SSNIT). Employers must register their employees with the SSNIT and pay their contributions.
To register, first acquire the necessary forms and fill them. Next, submit the forms. If your application is successful, you will receive a certificate. To register with SSNIT, you need the same documents used in the previous registrations.
Registration with the Local Government
Every company in Ghana should obtain a permit from the local government authority. Moreover, companies should renew this permit each year. The fees depend on the location and the company’s objects.
To register with the local government, take these steps:
- Acquire the application form and fill it
- Submit the form and pay the application fee
You will need the same documents to complete this registration process.
Registration with the Ghana Investment Promotion Centre
This last step is for companies that are a local subsidiary of a foreign business or where the shareholders are foreigners.
Here is the process of registration:
- Open a bank account with a Ghanaian bank
- Transfer the shareholder’s equity to the bank account
- Receive a confirmation from the bank that it has received the funds
- Collect registration forms from the Ghana Investment Promotion Centre (GIPC) and fill them
- Lastly, submit the forms, pay the application fees, and wait for approval
Once you receive the approval, the company will get a GIPC certificate. Moreover, the GIPC will issue foreign employees with automatic quotas upon application.
Note that the requirements for this process are the documents used in the other registrations and the following:
- A confirmation letter from the bank with regards to the transfer of funds
- The entity’s constitutional documents if the foreign shareholder is a corporate entity
- The entity’s listing certificate if the foreign shareholder is a listed entity
- Constitutional documents of the Ghanaian company
Finally, the registration process is complete and you can start conducting business in Ghana.
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