New law moved to replace Companies Ordinance

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ISLAMABAD Nov 18 (APP): A new Ordinance to replace the present Companies  Ordinance was moved to National Assembly Friday to facilitate business community and empowering Securities and Exchange Commission (SECP) to probe money laundering, terror financing and fraud.

Minister for Finance, Revenue, Statistics and Economic Affairs Muhammad  Ishaq Dar moved the bill to the new Ordinance “Companies Ordinance 2016” to the House. This Ordinance has been recently promulgated to replace the previous 32 years old Companies Ordinance.

Briefing the House about the new Ordinance present before the House
would meet the requirements of present age emerging after massive investment coming to Pakistan.

He said consultations were held for over one year to bring in this
comprehensive law and was promulgated after approval by the Cabinet.

Under this law there will be provision of filing of documents with SECP, filing of notices and information about documents, provision of e-balloting during election of Directors and holding session through video links. It will be mandatory for listed companies.

The minister said the new proposed law will also have provisions of book  entry for physical shares, registration of Shariah businesses and protection of investors money in real estate business.

He said the proposed law will also ensure maintenance of data bank for
protecting interests of small share holders.

Dar said the proposed law was also discussed in detail in the perspective of offshore companies and will have binding on companies to declare their investors and beneficiaries as it will also ensure registration and maintenance of assets.

He informed the House that major penalties have been proposed for
non-disclosure of assets of the companies.

He said the SECP will have powers to probe money laundering, fraud and  terror financing as this law will also save time for being in line with in international practices.

The minister said the new ordinance will also simplify the provisions of
merger and acquisition of companies as well as facilitating agriculture promotion companies.

He also welcomed any proposals by the House at the Committee level as he  pleaded that this law was need of the hour and the government would like valid input by the members.