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Company law amendments will improve ease of doing business: ICAI
May, 14th 2015

The fresh amendments to the Companies Law will go a long way in improving ease of doing business, chartered accountants' apex body ICAI has said.

The institute also welcomed the government's decision to set up an expert committee "to look into nitty-gritty and iron out creases".

The proposed panel will also look into other areas of the Companies Law to ascertain whether further amendments are required.

In a statement, ICAI President Manoj Fadnis said, "it was heartening that the Rajya Sabha has passed the Companies (Amendment) Bill, 2014, which will go a long way towards ease of doing business."

The changes, including those pertaining to fraud reporting by auditors and related party transactions, will be made to the Companies Act, 2013. Most provisions of this law came into effect from April 1, 2014.

The Rajya Sabha approved the amendments on Wednesday. From time to time, the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI) had submitted suggestions about the Act "to create conducive environment for functioning and growth of business".

"We are thankful to the government for considering our views and assure all stakeholders that we will live up to the expectations," Fadnis said.

He emphasised that the institute will extend full support to the Ministry of Corporate Affairs toward developing "a favourable framework that promotes ethics and governance".

There are amendments in 22 Sections of the Act such as doing away with requirement of minimum capital and making common seal optional, ICAI said in its statement.

Under the earlier law, every company was required to have a common seal with its name engraved on it. However, this requirement was made optional in the new Companies Act.

A major amendment is with regard to auditors. The issue was also pursued by the institute, it noted.

An amendment in Section 143 (12) of the Act prescribes that the auditor is required to report to the central government only frauds that are above a certain threshold.

Among others, except fraud, all other offences would be bailable under the Act while winding up cases would be heard by a 2-member bench.

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