Business Registration Reforms in Bosnia and Herzegovina-Republic of Srpska Entity

Bosnia/November 2013

The government of the Bosnian entity Republic of Srpska (RS) has adopted a set of laws, which constitute a legal framework for the implementation of the reform of business registration.

This way the RS government tends to create the legal requirements for establishment of new companies with easier and low cost procedure. These changes are significant incentives for creating a more competitive business environment, so more companies recognise Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) as their valuable place for doing a business.

The package of new measures significantly reduces the cost of starting a business. Some of the major incentives that the amendments stipulate are following:

•Minimum capital requirement was reduced from KM 2,000 to KM 1 (approximately from 1,000 EUR to 1 EUR);

•For a Limited Company (one shareholder) with the minimum capital requirement, instead of the notary processing of the incorporation documents, the notary signature verification will suffice, which significantly reduces the costs of starts up at the notary;

•The registration process of the craft and entrepreneurial activities is significantly simplified and will be carried out faster and at lower cost as the amendments to the Law on Administrative Taxes carries a maximum administrative fee of KM 30 (approximately EUR 15) for the registration of business activity at the local level;

•The amendments to the Law on Court Taxes relieve the founder of the first company registration of the court taxes, as well as of the costs of publication in the Official Gazette;

•The newly formed companies are released of court taxes for all other court decisions too, which are directly related to the founding act, regardless of whether the founder is a foreign or domestic person; and

•Taxes for the Certificates of Incorporation or other public records kept by the court, if issued at the request of the businessman, will significantly reduce.

A new concept of business registration has also been introduced, through the introduction of one stop shop system, that’s ultimate goal is the introduction of electronic submission of the application for the registration of companies by email.

Namely, commercial courts in the RS will continue to be responsible for the registration of companies and all other entities which are subject to the registration in the register, but the number of the days for the issuance of the Certificate of Incorporation will reduce to three days (from two weeks).

It is necessary that throughout the process of this kind of reforms BiH makes a big step forward in order to be more competitive in the region.

Above listed measures will have a positive impact on foreign investments, but other steps toward simpler registration procedure and generally healthier business environment should be undertaken as well. The concept of registering a company within three working days will be effective as of January 1, 2014 and it is expected that will significantly help to attract more investors.

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