ISLAMABAD: The Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) has, in principle, agreed to open up facilitation centres across the country.
As a first step, the commission has decided to open a facilitation centre at the Sialkot Chamber of Commerce and Industry, according to a statement issued by the SECP.
The centre will be launched immediately after Ramazan and will provide required information and assistance to the promoters of new companies as well as for the management of existing companies.
It will also include assistance for company incorporation, submission of applications and returns through eServices. The stakeholders would be able to use hardware/software at these centres to submit applications, returns and forms through eServices.
The SECP said it felt the need to set up the facilitation centres in different cities in order to simplify the mandatory online filing of returns and promote corporatisation in the country. The centres will be established in collaboration with the respective chambers of commerce and industry.
Earlier, in collaboration with the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) and the Employees Old-age Benefits Institution (EOBI), the SECP established a virtual one-stop shop (VOSS) for business registration. This will result in enhanced coordination of activities among the three bodies by sharing information through a unified web portal.
In addition to the VOSS, a memorandum of understanding for the first physical one-stop shop at the Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry was signed in September 2014 by the SECP, FBR, EOBI and LCCI.
Similar arrangements with the Karachi Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI) and Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ICCI) are currently under way.
The SECP launched the eServices project in 2008, which facilitates the online availability of name, online incorporation of companies and e-filing of statutory returns, and enables promoters to interact online using the portal and without visiting the SECP.
The eServices filing facility is a hassle-free mode of submission coupled with a lower fee compared to manual filing.
Published in The Express Tribune, June 25th, 2015.
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