A SURVEY OF THE COMMON POST COMPANY INCORPORATION PROCEDURES IN RWANDA
Majority of the business people often get stuck after incorporation of the company because they have no idea where to begin from. The others simply commence company activities as soon as the company is incorporated and overlook the simple details which later alone bring about unfortunate consequences. At Stabit Advocates we are dedicated to assist you and your establishment with the required legal compliance and frameworks including but not limited to guiding and facilitating you in all migration procedures and here we take you through a brief post incorporation procedure(s) such that your business commences in a legal manner. These post incorporation procedures include the following;
- Acquisition of Your Business’s Trading Licence and any other relevant licences
Before any business can commence in Rwanda or even elsewhere in any other jurisdictions, such business must be issued with a trading licence. In Rwanda, this license is issued by Rwanda Revenue Authority upon opening a decentralized tax account and paying of a prescribed fee. Any person who operates a business without a trading licence is liable to payment of penalties.
In addition, there are businesses which operate after obtaining of business licenses such as Construction & Engineering Consultancy Firms licence, Mining and Energy Firms Licence, Gaming licence, liquor import & Trading licence to mention but a few. Therefore any owner of a business which falls in the said category which requires a licence to operate must endeavor to acquire this licence before the business is commenced because if caught operating without a licence could result in banning of such business entity from operating the same business not to mention other penalties or charges that may be instituted upon the discretion of the regulatory authority
- Opening of a Bank Account;
A newly incorporated company ought to have a bank account. We always recommend having two accounts which are United States Dollar (USD) account and a local currency account (Rwf). This will protect such company from making losses through any possible fluctuating foreign exchange rates in case such business is to receive money in foreign currency per se. All banks in Rwanda are reputable and they include among others Bank of Kigali, Equity Bank, I&M bank, Access Bank, Eco Bank and Coge Bank etc. The requirements for opening company bank accounts cut across all banks in Rwanda and they include the following;
- Copy of the Company Certificate and Full registration details issued by Rwanda Development Board (RDB)
- An application letter requesting for opening of the Bank account
- Board Resolution of the Company shareholders resolving to open bank account
- Copy of National ID or Passport of the Company shareholders
- Copy of National ID or passport of the signatories to the account
- Two Passport size photographs of the signatories to the Bank account
- An initial deposit
The process of opening the bank account is very swift and cannot exceed an average of three days across all banks as long as all the requirements are available.
It suffices to mention that a Company bank account can be opened even in the absentia of the shareholders but it is only on condition that the shareholders issue a Power of Attorney to the said representative and such Power of Attorney is notarized at the nearest Rwandan Embassy in their jurisdiction and later sent through a carrier such as DHL to Rwanda.
- Registration of the Company Intellectual Property
For a company looking to grow its brand, it’s advisable to register the trademark of its company name and logo. This will protect its name from being used by other entities which can help avoid confusion of clients among other issues. For more information on requirements for registration of a trademark, feel free to go to our website blog.
- Putting together a Team of Employees
Like they say, every business becomes successful basing on how competent and hardworking the team is. Therefore this is a sensitive part for any new company. There are Human Resource Agencies which can assist you through the vetting process in case you have trouble identifying competent employees.
- Obtaining Legal Requirements for the Employment Team
The company can put together employment contracts for all employees which can be in accordance with the Rwandan Labour law. In addition, for any employees who are foreigners, the company management is required to apply for work permits for such employees. Feel free to check the Stabit Advocates Blog for the procedure and requirements for application of a work permit.
- Establishment of an Office Address.
In most cases since companies are not yet sure if they will be issued with licences or even if the company name will be granted by the Registrar General, it is always advisable to use temporary addresses for the registration process. Therefore after incorporation, the company management will have the task to identify an office address in a good location putting into consideration the model of their business operations. We always recommend use of brokers who have the capacity of easily communicating with the landlords and landladies across Kigali city with ease. Therefore, it will be very easy and cost effective to identify a good location with such brokers’ assistance. In addition, the company can look into establishing a website, obtaining a Post Office Box Number issued by Posta Rwanda, having a company official Email and Official Telephone Number among others.
At Stabit Advocates, our team of Professionals is ready 24/7 to assist you in any post company incorporation procedures you might need. Don’t hesitate to reach out to us using the contact details indicated hereunder;
Drafted and Drawn by;
Stabit Advocates Rwanda