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In recent times, a number of efforts to clean up Ghana’s banking industry have impacted the approach to corporate governance within organizations, and have emphasized the importance of a well-structured and effective governance regime for businesses. In this installment of our blog series, we discuss the improved legislative and policy framework for corporate governance in Ghana.   The Companies Act 2019 The Companies Act 2019 (Act 992) has enhanced the ease of doing business in Ghana and promoted a transparent and competitive business environment. In furtherance of the Act, the Registrar-General’s Department has introduced a new electronic system for business registration and filing amendments. The new electronic system, which includes revised online forms, generally allows a company to be registered without stating its objects, except for businesses operating within specific industries. Companies are additionally required to provide information on Politically Exposed Persons who could be beneficial owners or members of the company. A major highlight of the reform is the introduction of the Central Beneficial Ownership Register for all companies in Ghana, especially for those in high-risk sectors such as the extractive sector. Disclosure of such information reduces the risk of corruption, money laundering and terrorism financing.  The law mandates the rotation of...

Work From Home has become the trend of the present work environment, faster than expected. This new work arrangement allows employees, traditionally expected to work out of the employer’s office, to perform their job duties from home or other remote location. A Work From Home Policy is a formal document which regulates the terms of remote work. It provides guidelines defining the responsibilities and expectations of both employer and employee. It is sound practice for employers to develop a Work From Home Policy that can help in navigating the nuances of remote work and mitigating risks inherent in offsite access to the work environment. The following are the ten key elements of an effective Work From Home Policy: 1. Scope The scope of the Policy defines the intent and purpose of remote working, as well as the conditions for remote working. 2. Eligibility Some work functions can not be performed remotely. For these and all other cases, the Policy must clearly address the eligibility requirements for work from home, including any circumstances under which employees may be permitted to operate remotely. 3. Attendance, Availability and Dress Code Attendance, conduct and availability expectations of employees must be outlined, including legally compliant working hours and break periods. In an attempt to...

Ghana’s economy is forecasted to shrink by about 5% of GDP in 2020 — this being a baseline scenario impact from the challenges of the pandemic. Businesses are facing a testing time, the like of which many would never have seen before. Owner managed businesses are particularly hard hit in these times as they often do not have cash reserves to carry them through months of potential disruption and forced closure. We are now subject to a threat nobody could have foreseen and thus the Corporate Restructuring and Insolvency Act, 2020 (Act 1015) is the need of the hour. On 30th April 2020 the President assented to the Corporate Insolvency Bill, 2019 to bring into force a new legal framework for the regulation of insolvency practitioners as well as provide the avenue to help resuscitate temporarily distressed but viable businesses, entities and establishments from liquidation and its ramifications. The new law provides for the timely, efficient and impartial proceedings for insolvent companies and offers restructuring and insolvency solutions including administration, receivership and liquidation. However, it does not cover companies in the financial services industry such as banks and insurance companies which have separate laws covering their restructuring and insolvency proceedings.   Key highlights of...