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Nov 18, 2014

Tax Registration for Directors of Cambodian Companies

By Tim Holzer


Is there a new residency requirement for directors of Cambodian registered companies?  Maybe.

Cambodia has long prided itself as being friendly towards foreign investors.  With minor exceptions, there is only one nationality restriction: only Cambodian nationals are allowed to own land; foreign nationals are restricted to a 50 year lease with a right of renewal.

Neither Cambodia’s company law nor its investment law impose nationality or residency requirement on a company’s directors, even where the company is 100% foreign owned.  But, something may have changed under the new tax registration process.

There is a new regulation, Prakas 1139, which deals with tax registration.  Of course business must register with the tax authorities.  Fair enough.   But Prakas 1139 contains some troubling procedures, including, for example: the chairman of the board of directors “shall present directly at tax administration for photo taking and fingerprint scanning and shall bring with [him] the following original documents [or copies thereof, certified by respective ministries-institutions]”:  the “family book or residential book or residential certification issued by competent authority.”

Actually, Prakas 1139 implies that the residential documents are required for the “chairman, directors, owners or shareholders and managers.”   Informally, tax department officials are indicating that the residential documents may only be required for the chairman of the board of directors.  Yet, the actual language in Prakas 1139 is clearly broader.

Prakas 1139 (effective, 9 October 2014) requires enterprises registered after 1 November to be process compliant.  “For enterprises that registered tax prior to 1 November 2014, chairman or owner of the enterprise shall update its tax registration following notification from tax administration.”  We understand from tax department officials that notifications requiring updating of tax registration will be issued to most companies.  For additional information or assistance please contact us at one of the email addresses noted below.

The issues raised by Prakas 1139 are under discussion within government and private sector forums.  As more information is obtained, we will update this news alert.


Sciaroni & Associates is a leading business and investment advisory firm serving Southeast Asia since 1993 with offices in CambodiaLaos and Myanmar.  Sciaroni & Associates assists clients in understanding the complex business conditions in those markets while efficiently identifying and resolving issues following strict international ethical standards.  Our firm provides experienced advice and seasoned business insights to many of the world’s leading companies, governments, economic think tanks, global development funds and international NGOs. For more information please visit www.sa-asia.com or contact us at info@sa-asia.com.


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Sciaroni & Associates is a leading professional and investment advisory firm doing business in Southeast Asia since 1993. Based in Cambodia with legal offices in Laos and Myanmar, we provide experienced advice and business insights to many of the world’s leading companies, governments, economic think tanks, global development funds, international NGOs and the Royal Government of Cambodia in accordance with strict international standards.
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Street Address: No. 24, Street 462, Sangkat Tonle BassacKhan Chamkarmon, Phnom Penh, Cambodia
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Telephone: +855 23 210 225 Facsimilie: +855 23 213 089 Email: info@sa-asia.com