INTRODUCTION TO CORPORATE COMPLIANCE IN CAMEROON
The corporate business environment is regulated by certain requirements to be met for the effective operation of its business in Cameroon. When the necessary corporate compliance is adhered to by companies, it brings sustainable development to that organization. The major statute that imposed various corporate compliance in Cameroon is the OHADA UNIFORM ACT RELATING TO COMMERCIAL COMPANIES AND ECONOMIC INTEREST GROUPS.
THESE VARIOUS CORPORATE COMPLIANCES IN CAMEROON WILL BE DISCUSSED BELOW.
Incorporation of Companies: The OHADA UNIFORM ACT is the principal statute that governs corporate activities and stipulates regulations that must be complied with before commencing business operations, and during operations in Cameroon. Before the commencement of business operations, to incorporate a company in Cameroon, companies are to comply with the requirements to register a company as discussed in our widely read published articles on google.
There are also post-incorporation corporate compliances in Cameroon to be met by registered companies, they are also to comply with the requirement of filing monthly declarations which is a percentage of sales or services + the salary of the number of workers. It is statutory compliance that all registered companies must submit their monthly declarations to enable the company registry to have up-to-date records of the company. This declaration is done monthly evidencing the performance of the company for the month and its financial position. Companies yet to commence activities are duty-bound to file declarations evaluated from their monthly prospection in the business or risk being fined to pay penalties.
Apart from incorporation and post-incorporation, there are other several statutory corporate compliances in Cameroon imposed by Companies Regulatory agencies. Some of these corporate compliances include statutory meetings of the companies, the filing of company resolutions among others.
Another corporate compliance registered companies must consider a priority is to renew the attestation of non-indebtedness of the company. The Attestation of non-indebtedness is valid for three months from the date of signature, it is the obligation of a company to ensure this document is renewed as when due.
Further, registered companies in Cameroon must ensure they renew their company business license yearly between the month of 1st January – 15th march. The fee for renewal shall be determined by the turnover of the company with the assistance of your retained corporate adviser.
In addition, companies in Cameroon must ensure the verbal rent of the company is renewed. Renewal is done yearly with 25% of the rent sum paid as renewal charges.
Furthermore, another corporate compliance to be adhered to by companies in Cameroon is the filing of balance sheets. Companies in Cameroon must ensure they comply with filing pf balance sheet yearly between 1st January – 15th March. However, filing is optional in some cases.
Lastly, registration of employees with the CNPS as provided for on Ordinance No 73-17 of 22nd May 1973 which is aimed at ensuring that employees are adequately and timely compensated in case of social insurance benefits, and occupational hardship.
EFFECTS OF NON- COMPLIANCE IN CAMEROON
Companies that fail to comply with the various requirements that regulate a company in Cameroon face the risk of being sanctioned by the relevant authorities regulating it. Sanctions for non-compliance of companies could be in form of fines and penalties which could, in turn, affect the revenue made by the defaulting company; it can also have a negative impact on the cash flow of the company and disruption of the business activities of the company.
Non- compliance can also bring bad publicity to the company, thereby affecting the brand integrity of the defaulting company. It can also lead to revocation and withdrawal of the license, permits, or grants issued by relevant authorities in the applicable sector of the company.
CONCLUSION & RECOMMENDATION
Corporate compliance is an intentional function that forms an integral part of the way business is operated by companies in Cameroon. For companies to operate in Cameroon without any or reduced management risk, it must comply with the above-highlighted statutory provisions.
It is our recommendation that serious-minded companies should hire the services of a corporate firm on a retainer to follow up on mandatory corporate compliances so as to minimize the consequences of non-compliance.
Article by Barr. Mafany Victor Ngando
“The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstance”