A liaison office allows the foreign investor to establish a more direct communication channel with the Bangladesh market. A liaison office is not permitted to conduct any commercial activity. According to the BIDA, the only activities a liaison office is permitted to undertake are the following:
All costs associated with the liaison office must be paid by the foreign investor through inward remittance. No outward remittance from Bangladesh sources will be permitted.
Similar to a branch office, establishing a liaison office requires approval from BIDA and must register with the RJSC.
In order to open a branch office or a liaison office in Bangladesh, it is necessary to obtain permission from BIDA. To apply for permission, the following documents are required:
Completed and signed an application form.
Certificate of Incorporation of the foreign company
MOA and AOA of the foreign company
Particulars of the directors/promoters of the foreign company.
Audited accounts of the last financial year of the foreign company.
Board resolution approving the establishment of the branch office or liaison office
Proposed organogram of the office detailing the posts occupied by local and foreign personnel
Particulars of proposed activities.
The documents must be attested by the Bangladesh Embassy or High Commission of the country of origin. Alternatively, it may be attested by the Apex Chamber of Commerce of the country of origin. Additionally, BDT 25,000 must be paid and the Pay Order must be submitted to BIDA. BIDA may request further documents or information as part of the application process. The application along with the documents will be reviewed by the Inter-Ministerial Committee. If the application is approved, BIDA will issue an approval letter. The approval is valid for three years.
After approval from BIDA, a bank account must be opened. The purpose of opening the bank account is to remit at least USD 50,000. The remittance is intended to cover the establishment and operational costs of the first 6 months. The foreign investor must remit this amount within two months from the date of approval from BIDA.
The final step is to register the branch or liaison office with the RJSC. To register with the RJSC, the following information or documents will be required:
Approval letter from BIDA
Certified copies of all constitutional documents
A list of all Directors and Secretary
Address of the principal place of business
Address of the principal place of business in Bangladesh
The name and address of every person authorized to accept any document that must be served on the foreign company.