Surinamese Parliament approves Act on Financial Reporting (Wet op de Jaarrekening)

The Surinamese Parliament has recently approved the Act on Financial Reporting. Those in favor say that this is a big step forward towards better regulation and governance of Suriname’s business environment. Also it’s said that Suriname’s investment climate will improve with this piece of legislation. However, those against say that this Act will significantly increase the administrative burden of Surinamese companies. The lack of sufficient accountants and regulations for the accountants’ profession is reason for some to consider this legislation as premature.

Under this Act, companies are required to compile financial statements. After the Act comes into force, companies will have two years to comply with this Act.

The Act in general distinguishes between three types of companies: public interest companies, mid-sized companies and small companies.

Public interest companies

Public interest companies are:

  • Large companies, a company which qualifies for the following criteria:

i. Value of the assets exceeds 12 million Surinamese Dollars;

ii. Net revenue exceeds 24 million Surinamese Dollars; and

iii. Staff of at least 50.

  • Publicly listed company
  • Credit institution
  • Insurance company
  • Pension fund
  • Legal entity established by law
  • Foreign company which has size of large company based on local operations

Public interest companies are required to prepare their financial statements in accordance with IFRS. These companies are also required to have their financial statements accompanied with an auditor’s report. The accountants audit should be done by a certified independent accountant. Certification of accountants is the responsibility of the Surinamese Association of Accountants (‘SUVA’). The Minister of Finance may change this designation and set conditions. Some have said that the SUVA may not be the most appropriate organization to be responsible for the certification.

Publication is required in Dutch within 6 months after the end of the financial year at the trade register (i.e. Chamber of Commerce).

Mid-sized companies

Mid-sized companies are:

  • Value of the assets exceeds 3 million Surinamese Dollars;
  • Net revenue exceeds 6 million Surinamese Dollars; and
  • Staff of at least 10.

Mid-sized companies are required to prepare their financial statements in accordance with IFRS for SME.

Publication is required in Dutch within 8 months after the end of the financial year at company’s office.

Small companies

Small companies are:

  • Value of the assets of 3 million Surinamese Dollars or less;
  • Net revenue of 6 million Surinamese Dollars or less; and
  • Staff of less than 10.

Small companies are required to prepare their financial statements in accordance tax accounting principles based on the Income Tax Act. I.e. all businesses in Suriname are already required to prepare financial statements based on tax accounting principles for filing with their corporate income tax return.

Publication is required in Dutch within 8 months after the end of the financial year at company’s office.

Non-compliance

Non-compliance with this Act is considered to be an economic offence.

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