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Kenya Extends Deadline for Submission of Beneficial Ownership Information Submission

On 27 January 2021, Kenya's Business Registration Service issued a press release announcing a six-month extension of the initial deadline for the submission of beneficial ownership information, from 31 January 2021 to 31 July 2021.

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BENEFICIAL OWNERSHIP INFORMATION SUBMISSION - DEADLINE EXTENSION FOR A PERIOD OF SIX MONTHS WITH EFFECT FROM 1st FEBRUARY 2021

Nairobi, Kenya – 27th January 2021 –

The Business Registration Service (BRS) has received a significantly high number of applications to file Beneficial Ownership Information E-Register at the Companies Registry by persons who are keen to comply with the requirements of the Companies Act, 2015.

As per our previous communication, companies registered under the Companies Act, 2015 and the Companies Act Cap. 486 Laws of Kenya (now repealed) are required under Section 93A to prepare and submit a copy of the Beneficial Ownership registers to the Registrar of Companies within 30 days of its preparation and to notify the Registrar within 14 days of any change in beneficial ownership information. We had previously issued a deadline of 31st January 2021.

Having taken note of the progress made in filing these registers and in the spirit of encouraging compliance with the Companies Act, BRS has in consultation with stakeholders granted a final grace period of six months ending 31st July 2021.

Failure to comply with this requirement after 31st July 2021 makes it an offence to the company and every officer of the company who is in default and such officer will be liable to a fine upon conviction.

We have first operationalized the e-Register for private limited companies and shall progressively operationalize the e-Registers for the other types of companies.

We advise the public to be cautious of persons soliciting money to facilitate them in complying with this requirement. Submission of the beneficial ownership information is a simple process and free of charge that can be undertaken by any company officer/authorized person online by following the step-by-step Beneficial Ownership E-register Manual available at www.brs.go.ke.

BRS would like to reiterate for emphasis that the disclosure of the beneficial ownership information is a positive exercise that will promote good governance and increase trust in Kenyan companies and ensure greater transparency of company ownership. This will also support the government in the fight against corruption, money laundering and financing of terrorism.

Finally, we wish to make it clear that the register is not accessible to unauthorized persons but only to competent authorities who may use the register upon request in accordance with the law.

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