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JIS News

As a result of the overwhelming response by the general public to the amnesty now on at the Office of the Registrar of Companies (ORC), Minister of Commerce, Science and Technology, Phillip Paulwell has announced an extension of the amnesty to January 28, 2005.
In a statement to JIS News, Minister Paulwell explained that the ORC had received tremendous response to the amnesty, which allows companies to file annual returns at significantly reduced rates, while late fees for filing documents have been waived. He noted however, that there would be no further extension beyond the January deadline.
The Minister also announced that the implementation of the new Companies Act 2004 would take place on February 1, 2005, rather than January 3. This, he explained, would not only facilitate various companies in getting up-to-date in their filings, in preparation for the new Act, but would also allow for the “cleansing” of the ORC register.
Chief Executive Officer at the ORC, Judith Ramlogan-Chong, in elaborating on the significance of an updated register said, “statistics reveal that of the 65,000 companies that are on the register, some 43,000 are not compliant. The amnesty will, hopefully, allow most of those companies to become compliant.”
Speaking about the success of the amnesty, she disclosed to JIS News that since the start of the amnesty on the 18th of November, more than 18,812 documents have been filed. This, she said, was an average of 696 documents per day, up from 200 documents per day, prior to the amnesty – tripling the daily transactions.
“Up to this point, response has been overwhelming. Persons have packed our offices waiting to file their documents before the closing date,” she revealed.Commenting on the implementation date for the new Companies Act, now set for February 1, Mrs. Ramlogan-Chong noted that the deferment would be advantageous to clients and customers of the ORC, as they would now have an extended time in which they can familiarize themselves with the new forms and processes. She said that there are 33 new forms and a number of new processes with which clients must become familiar.
The CEO also informed that the ORC has collected over $17 million in revenue during the period November 18 to December 24.