HM Government of Gibraltar Publishes Bill for new Companies Act

03/04/2014 Peter Isola, Steven Caetano

HM Government of Gibraltar has today published a Bill for a new Companies Act. This brings the Government’s manifesto commitment in this area closer to completion.

As was stated in December 2013 when publishing the Command Paper on this matter, a much-needed and thorough review of the present Companies Act and related legislation has been under way for some time.

The review has involved consideration of proposals put forward by the Company Law Reform Committee set up by the Finance Centre Council and a consultation process which culminated in the publication of the Command Paper. The Bill published today incorporates a number of issues which were raised during the Command Paper consultation period.

HM Government of Gibraltar is also publishing today a Bill for an Insolvency (Amendment) Act and a Bill for an Insolvency (Consequential Provisions) Act. These Bills will enable the commencement of a new insolvency regime under the Insolvency Act 2011. The Bills mainly provide for amendments consequential upon the enactment of the Companies Bill and make changes to various other enactments which are necessary on the commencement of the Insolvency Act 2011.

The Minister for Justice, Gilbert Licudi, QC, said: “Our Companies legislation dates from 1930. Although various amendments have been made since then, there was a need for a major overhaul with a view to updating and modernising the legislation. Extensive work has been carried out in preparing the Companies Bill with much participation from private sector practitioners both at the preparation and the consultation stages. I am grateful to everyone who has contributed to this. We have also finalised the insolvency-related legislation including a number of regulations which will allow the Insolvency Act 2011 to be commenced.

It is the Government’s intention to take these Bills at the May sitting of Parliament. Practitioners will then be giving around three months to familiarise themselves with the insolvency legislation and the new Companies Act. We expect that these will be commenced on 1 September 2014.”

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