Company Registration in New Zealand

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Company Registration in New Zealand- An Overview

New Zealand is one of the most dynamic places in the world to start a business. As per reports of the World Bank, this country is considered as one of the best places for doing business. It provides a lot of diverse opportunities to grow and expand.

The law which regulates company registration in New Zealand is the Companies Act, 1993. All the regulatory insights related to company registration in New Zealand is governed by the said act. Though the area offered in New Zealand is small, still lot of financial resources and government support is present in the country to make a company grow.

As per the records of the transparency index, New Zealand is considered highly transparent and ranked second in the world. This would make it easy to conduct transactions in New Zealand with minimum amount of limitations.

Main Regulatory Authority

The primary regulatory authority for company registration in New Zealand is the Companies Register in New Zealand. The law that governs the registration of companies in New Zealand is the Companies Act, 1993.

Apart from the above, there are other authorities that regulate the activities of companies registered in New Zealand. The following are the authorities that regulate the activities of companies registered in New Zealand:

  • The Companies Office- Main body for maintaining all information pertaining the registers of the companies incorporated in New Zealand.
  • Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MIBE)- This authority is responsible for bringing out different form of policy changes in the law that regulates companies in New Zealand.
  • Insolvency and Trustee Services (ITS)- Administers all the procedures related to bankruptcy and insolvency in New Zealand.
  • Financial Markets Authority- Regulates all the financial activities of companies in New Zealand. Apart from this, it checks into activities such as Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing in New Zealand.
  • Inland Revenue Authority- The Inland Revenue Authority looks into the aspects related to taxation and other form of services in New Zealand.
  • Reserve Bank- This authority is considered as one of the Central Monetary Authorities in the country. Liquidity in the country is controlled by this institution.

Things to consider before going for Company Registration in New Zealand

Type of Business Structure-

One of the things to consider before going for Company Registration in New Zealand is the form of business structure in New Zealand. The primary types of business structures prominent in New Zealand are as follows:

  • Sole Proprietor- As the name implies a sole trader or sole proprietor is a business incorporated by a sole owner. It is a business entity that can be easily formed. The business becomes part of your personal finances hence you will be responsible for all income and losses.
  • Limited Liability Company- Here, the business is a separate legal entity with one or more owners. Usually losses are not held against the owners.
  • Partnership- In this case, business partners share the personal responsibility for income, and losses arising out of the business. A partnership is considered as a relationship between the partners with the intention to shares the profits of the business.

Company Name-

The next thing that an entrepreneur or an overseas investor has to consider is the company name of the entity. The name of the entity must be reserved before starting or incorporating a company. The name of the company must not be offensive or opposing any form of laws related to incorporating companies in New Zealand.

Number of Directors-

Depending on the requirements of the company, there are minimum number of directors to be appointed to carry out the functions of a company. The meaning of director and shareholders are different and carry out different functions. Directors have to be appointed as per the requirements of the Companies Act, 1993.

Overseas Company Registration-

An applicant does not need to start a company in New Zealand from inception. An overseas company can be registered under the laws of New Zealand. However, such companies which are established under the laws of New Zealand would be governed by the local laws. However, if the company is registered they will be governed by the overseas register. Apart from this the applicant can go for the process of transferring the registration to New Zealand. Another option available to the applicant is starting a subsidiary company in New Zealand.


You may own the entire company or share ownership with other people who’ve invested in it, i.e. shareholders. Every company must have shareholders, with a record of this on the company’s share register.

Benefits of Company Registration in New Zealand

The following benefits can be enjoyed by the applicant by going for company registration in New Zealand:

Employment Opportunities-

Setting up a business in a new country would open gates to new employment opportunities. It will generate numerous amount of local employment opportunities and attract talent.

Diverse Environment-

New Zealand has a diverse environment attracting different talents from all across the world. Setting up a company here would usher in vibrant opportunities.

Government Incentives-

Numerous amount of government incentives are provided by the New Zealand government. An applicant can take the benefits of all the incentives offered by the government.

Compliance with Laws-

An applicant would find it seamless to comply with the requirements of the local laws laid down by the Companies Act, 1993 as the regulations here are less stringent as compared with other countries.

Low Corruption Rate

New Zealand has been ranked one of the best countries in terms of transparency in business. It is a country with least corruption.

Free trade agreements

Companies in New Zealand have free trade agreements with many countries across the globe. This makes it an attractive destination for entrepreneurs.

Documents for Company Registration in New Zealand

The following Documents are required for company registration in New Zealand:

  • Provide Information Related to the Company
  • Details of the Shareholders and Directors
  • Application form
  • If the applicant is a non-resident of New Zealand, passport and visa information must be submitted
  • Contact Details of Company
  • Information Pertaining to Resident Directors

Procedure for Company Registration in New Zealand

The following procedure is adopted for company registration in New Zealand:

  • Register and Reserve the name of the company

The business name needs to be registered through an online method but before that it has to be ensured that the name that has been selected is not already being used. So the name of the company should be distinct. The reservation of the name of the company should be done with the ROC with minimum 1 shareholder, 1 director, and registered office.

  • Obtain New Zealand Business Number

In the next step, New Zealand Business Number (NZBN) is obtained. It is a unique identifier for your business which helps others while working with your company. It is easier for you to do business once you obtain a company registration number in NZ as you don’t have to keep on repeating the same information over and over again while dealing with someone new or when something changes.

  • Filing of the application form for company registration

The application form is filed with the appropriate authority along with the supporting Documents. The application will be processed by the department in New Zealand responsible for company registration.

  • Obtain Certificate of Incorporation

If the application submitted and Documents are approved by the department then it will issue the certificate of incorporation.

  • Get GST Registration

After the incorporation process is completed, obtaining Income Tax and GST license or certificate from the Inland Revenue is essential for doing business in New Zealand.

Frequently Asked Questions

Yes it is simple to incorporate a company in New Zealand. The applicant has to comply with the requirements related to the Companies Act, 1993.

No it is not necessary. However, you will need a resident director.

Yes the annual returns of a company registered in New Zealand can be filed online. This can be done through the companies’ registry website.

Applicant can maintain details related to directors and shareholders by going online to the companies registry website and updating information.

There are different methods to register a company in New Zealand:

  • If the company is an overseas company, then the transfer can be adopted.
  • Apart from this, the business of the company can be started from inception.
  • The applicant can even go for the process of establishing a subsidiary of the parent company.

Usually, this login is utilised either to reserve a name of the company or change the name of the company.

Yes, it is possible to change the name of an overseas registered company. This process can be carried out by login online through the website.

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