Online Registries Critical to Pacific Private Sector Development

Developing and reforming online/electronic business registries in the Pacific Islands, such as this one in the Solomon Islands, is essential if the region wants to build a vibrant, efficient private sector.

AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND – Developing and reforming online/electronic business registries in the Pacific Islands is essential if the region wants to build a vibrant, efficient private sector, delegates said at a workshop jointly organized by the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the New Zealand Companies Office.

“The development of online business registries in the Pacific will ultimately make it easier for people to conduct business in the region,” said Andrea Iffland, Regional Director of ADB's Pacific Liaison and Coordination Office in Sydney, Australia. “We look forward to continuing our partnership with the New Zealand Companies Office to develop more business registries in the region.”

ADB, in partnership with the New Zealand Companies Office, is helping develop online business registries in Solomon Islands, Samoa, Tonga Vanuatu, and other Pacific countries.

Video: Solomon Islands: Breaking Barriers

“The New Zealand Companies Office is a world leader in the use of information technology to enable online registries and is delighted to be part of this ongoing partnership with ADB”, said Michael Brosnahan, Operations Manager, Market Services Group, Ministry of Business Innovation and Employment. “Online registries reduce the time and costs associated with the ‘tyranny of distance,’ and are transforming the way business being done in the region.”

The benefits of online business registries are many. They are easy to use, and the paperless registration process allows business owners to register a company and update company details from anywhere with an internet connection, instead of travelling vast distances to do this.

The workshop heard that business registries help reduce the cost of doing business, encourage compliance, improve transparency, and ensure fair trading and consumer protection through appropriate regulation. Participants discussed setting up new business registries, and international trends, citing successful registry models in Samoa and Solomon Islands.

The workshop, held today in Auckland, was attended by Pacific government officials, development partners and private sector representatives.

Online business registry development is part of the Pacific Private Sector Development Initiative (PSDI), financed by ADB and Australia. PSDI is supporting the efforts of ADB Pacific developing member countries to encourage private sector led, sustainable economic growth.