Foreign Company Registration

A foreign company must obtain a permission letter from the Board of Investment with a specific validity period for opening and maintaining its branch or liaison office in Pakistan. Copy of this permission letter is mandatory to be filled with the documents destined for the registration. Renewal or extension lead to the approval to open/maintain a branch/liaison office is also required to be attained from the Investment Board on the expiration of the validity period of the initially granted permission. A copy to the concerned registrar must be furnished on grant of such renewal/extension.
Before going into a brief discussion, it is essential to apprehend some of the related terms which will be used in this article;

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20 - 04 - 2021

Definition and Explanation of Related terms

What is a Foreign Company?

A Foreign Company is a company registered somewhere outside Pakistan under a foreign law other than Pakistani law and established its place of business in Pakistan.

What is a Place of Business?

A place of business includes branch, share transfer or registration office, management, factory, mine, or fixed place of business but does not involve an agency unless the agent exercises a general authority to negotiate and conclude an agreement or contract or maintains stock of merchandise on behalf of the company.

What is a branch office?

An office recognized by a foreign company to fulfil its promised obligations with either public or private sector in Pakistan is known as a branch office. Its activity shall be limited to the work revealed in the signed agreement or contract. However, the office cannot carry out any commercial or trading activities. Remittance of profits is allowed subject to submission of information or documents as required in Para 13 Chapter XIV of the Foreign Exchange Manual of SBP.

What is a Liaison office?

A foreign company establishes a liaison Office to promote products, provide technical assistance & advice explore the opportunity of collaboration, and export promotion. However, they cannot undertake any trading activities. No remittance facility is being allowed in the liaison office in Pakistan.

Who needs to get registered?

Each foreign company that creates a place of business in Pakistan has to provide the required particular documents to the concerned registrar within thirty days of establishing a business in Pakistan.