The Federal Government has announced, as part of the Modernising Business Registers (MBR) program, that the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) business registers are rolling under the Australian Tax Office (ATO).
The appointment of the Commissioner of Taxation as the Commonwealth Registrar of the Australian Business Registry Services (ABRS) signified the next stage and, once fully established, would bring all 31 of ASIC’s business registers and the Australian Business Register into a new modern system at the ATO.
The Minister for Superannuation, Financial Services and the Digital Economy, Senator Jane Hume, said for the 2.7 million registered companies on the Australian Company Register, these reforms would streamline their annual business registry engagement with the Government.
“There are on average 224,000 new company registrations in Australia each year,” Hume said.
“The new ABRS will mean for each new registration, business owners will have a single entry point through the ATO to establish their business, rather than the current system that has up to seven entry points for various business registry interactions needed to establish a business.
“The new system will improve transparency of publicly held company data by creating a single source of trusted and accessible business data that will provide efficient registry service delivery.
“It will also provide businesses with real time access to their data and allow them to have more visibility and confidence in their transaction partners.”
The Registrar would have ongoing flexibility to adapt and respond to changes in technology to improve the user experience and simplify the way people interacted with business registers.
“Director identification numbers (director ID) will be the first new function of the ABRS to be delivered later this year and is a new requirement for all company directors,” Hume said.
“Director ID will be a unique identifier that a director will keep forever. An individual will keep their director ID even if they cease to be a director, change their name, or move interstate or overseas.
“Verifying the identity of directors is important for improving data integrity and helping regulators to detect and deal with illegal phoenixing activities.
“The Registrar will notify company directors of their obligations under the new director ID regime.”