Foreign Company Registration In South Africa

What is a Foreign Company?

A foreign corporation is a term used to describe an existing corporation that conducts business in a state or jurisdiction other than where it was originally incorporated. 

Foreign Company Registration In South Africa

A foreign company is a company incorporated outside of South Africa, irrespective of whether it is a profit or non-profit company or carrying out business in South Africa. A foreign company is prohibited from offering securities to the South African public unless it follows the specific provisions of the Companies Act, 2008, relating to offers to the public.

A foreign company is required to register as an “external company” with CIPC if it conducts or intends to conduct business in South Africa. Section 23 of the Companies Act, 2008, lists a series of activities that will be regarded as conducting business.

This list includes the following:

  • Holding a meeting or meetings of shareholders or board of the foreign company, or otherwise conducting the internal affairs of the company;
  • Establishing or maintaining any bank or other financial account;
  • Establishing or maintaining offices or agencies for the transfer, exchange, or registration of the foreign company’s securities;
  • Creating or acquiring any debts, mortgages, or security interests in any property;
  • Acquiring any interest in intellectual property; and
  • Entering into contracts of employment.

A foreign company can only be registered manually.

Click here for the CIPC service standards. Service Standard is dependent on payment for the transaction being made.

Click here to log an inquiry (only after the indicated service standard has lapsed).

How Much Does a Foreign Company Registration Cost in South Africa?

Foreign companies that want to start business in South Africa must establish a place of business from where the investors or their appointed managers can conduct the business properly.

Besides, the foreign companies must pay R400 as a registration fee by filling the Form CoR20.

How long does it take to register a Foreign company in South Africa?

If Company Partners is doing the registration for you, you will use our passport service and we only require a certified copy of your passport.

If there is a mix of foreign nationals and SA citizens, we will need the ID copies of the SA citizens as well. The registration process will take about one to two weeks.