The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has funded a new electronic Companies Registry (Company Haus), which will enable online registration of companies in the Solomon Islands and contribute towards the Government of Solomon Islands efforts to improve efficiency of doing business in the country.

Launched by the Solomon Islands' Ministry of Commerce today, the paperless registration process will support the operations of the Company Haus and enable the business community to access the Companies Registry, and allow them to register a company, update company details or make a company search by simply going online from the comfort of their office or home.

"The registry is a time-saver and is user-friendly, and eventually it will mean that people can register their companies online from the provinces, without having to travel the long distance to Honiara to do so," said Edwin Saramo, Registrar of the Companies Registry.

The registry will help facilitate the administration of the new Companies Act which became effective in July 2010. ADB also assisted the Government by supporting the drafting of the Act, which was prepared following extensive consultations in Honiara and the provinces.

"The new Companies Registry will ultimately make it easier for local people to conduct business in Solomon Islands," says Eugenue Zhukov, Regional Director of ADB's Pacific Liaison and Coordination Office in Sydney, Australia. "The registry will also help reduce the cost of doing business, encourage compliance, and ensure fair trading and consumer protection through appropriate regulation."

The Solomon Islands Companies Registry Office will be a contact point for businesses, and a resource for learning more about current business law in Solomon Islands. The office will also be responsible for the management of the registry, which is available to the public on the internet via the following link:

ADB is working closely with the Solomon Islands Government to help modernize business laws and increase access to finance opportunities. The Companies Act reform work is part of the Private Sector Development Initiative, which ADB established in 2006 with co financing from the Australian Government to support efforts by ADB Pacific developing member countries to encourage private sector led, sustainable economic growth.