The Finance Act 2020 amended the Companies Act to enable the obtaining of information on beneficial owners who were initially not regulated under the Companies Act.
Under the amendments, companies are required to deliver to the Registrar of Companies together with a memorandum a statement in a prescribed form containing, among others, the following accurate and up to date records of beneficial owners:

  1. Full name, including any former or other name
  2. Date and place of birth
  3. Telephone number
  4. Nationality, national identity number, passport number or other appropriate identification
  5. Residential, postal and email address if any
  6. Place of work and position held
  7. Nature of the interest including the details of the legal, financial, security, debenture or informal arrangement giving rise to the Beneficial Ownership
  8. Oath or affirmation as to whether the Beneficial Owner is a Politically Exposed Person or not.

The amendment defines a Beneficial Owner to be a natural person:

  1. Who directly or indirectly ultimately owns or exercises substantial control over an entity or an arrangement
  2. Who has a substantial economic interest in or receives substantial economic benefit from an entity or an arrangement directly or indirectly whether acting alone or together with other persons
  3. On whose behalf an arrangement is conducted
  4. Who exercises significant control or influence over a person or arrangement through a formal or informal agreement.

The term ‘arrangement’ is defined to include an action, agreement, course of conduct, dealing, promise, transaction, understanding or undertaking, whether express or implied, whether or not enforceable by legal proceedings and whether unilateral or involving more than one person.
The term Politically Exposed Person means a foreign individual entrusted with prominent public functions including heads of state or government, senior politicians, senior government, judicial or military officials, senior executives of state owner corporations or agencies.

The deadline for submission of records of beneficial owners was 31 st December 2021.

The Minister for Industry and Trade has through a public announcement issued on 4th January 2022, extended the time for submission of records of beneficial owners by six months effective 1 st January 2022.
In the meantime companies incorporated in other jurisdictions and operating in Tanzania as branches issued with a Certificate of Compliance by the Registrar of Companies are exempted from the requirement to register beneficial owners.