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  • CMI Legal Team

Thinking about Setting Up Business in Australia?

Updated: Aug 20

We summarise the important information for you to take note of.



Steps for Setting Up a Business:


1. Company Registration

Register your company with the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC). You would need to know your company name, structure (partnership, joint venture, etc), and the details of officeholders and members. You will be provided with an Australian Company Number (ACN) upon registration.


2. Business Registration

A business registration acknowledges the type of activity in which your company will be engaging, as well as the scope of the activity. Registration is done with the Australian Business Registry and an Australian Business Number (ABN) and a Tax File Number (TFN) will be provided.


3. Goods and Services Tax (GST)

If your business is anticipated to have a turnover of AU$75,000 or more, you must register for GST. This can be completed when you register your company and business.


4. Licensing

Businesses operating within certain industries are required to obtain a business license. For example, an alcohol retailer must apply for a liquor license.


Frequently Asked Questions:


1. Can a foreign entity register a company in Australia?

A foreign entity – individual or business – can register a company in Australia or hold 100% of its shares. However, it must have at least one company director who is an Australian resident. A company held by a foreign entity would have the same tax obligations as a locally held company.


2. What is the minimum registered capital requirement for company registration?

You can register a company with a capital of as low as AU$1.00. You may borrow additional capital from an Australian lender regardless of whether you are a foreign or local entity.


3. What are the requirements for companies to open a bank account in Australia?

To open an Australian bank account, a company must have an ABN and a TFN. The director of the company must show proof of identity, residential address, and confirm the nature of the business.


Australia is one of the most highly regulated countries. As such, all company activities including investments, hiring employees, leasing and purchasing business premises must be supported by adequate legal processes and documents.


For more information and step-by-step guidance, please contact CMI Legal. We are a team of experienced lawyers specialising in the areas of business, investment, labour, taxation and migration. Together, we have helped over 100 local and foreign owners get their businesses started.


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