Improve Accessibility and Compliance of Beneficial Ownership Register (GH0036)
Action Plan: Ghana Action Plan 2021-2023
Action Plan Cycle: 2021
Lead Institution: Register General’s Department
Support Institution(s): State actors involved Office of the Attorney General and Ministry of Justice Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources, Petroleum Commission, Minerals Commission Ministry of Energy CSOs, private sector, multilaterals, working groups Ghana Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (GHEITI) Natural Resource Governance Institute (NRGI) Africa Centre for Energy Policy (ACEP) Public Interest Accountability Committee (PIAC)
Policy AreasAnti Corruption and Integrity, Beneficial Ownership, Capacity Building, E-Government, Extractive Industries, Natural Resources
Problem to be addressed ● The Beneficiary Ownership regime in Ghana has been operational since the enactment of The Companies Act 2019 (Act 992) and the completion of the upgrade of the Registrar General’s Department’s electronic register to enable the department receive data on beneficiary ownership. What is required now is to ensure data quality and accuracy, data accessibility and availability as well as effective use of data
The commitment Improve the comprehensive quality and accuracy of data at The Registrar General’s Department Enable greater access and availability of data Encourage greater data use and build the capacity of data users in government, civil society and among investigative journalists.
Contribution of commitment to solving problem ● The commitment will ensure that the BOT regime which has become operational does actually advance transparency in business ownership which Ghana has aspired to in all previous commitments.
Relevance of commitment to OGP values Commitment will promote transparency in business ownership in Ghana.
Milestone Activity with a verifiable deliverable Start Date: End Date: Awareness raising and sensitization on quality on BO data submission, requirements organized for industry stakeholders. Nov. 2021 June. 2023 Mechanisms to verify the accuracy of data submitted to RGD and a system to flag suspicious submission to further investigation, Nov. 2022 June 2023 Mechanisms for sanctions for filing non-compliance in place Nov. 2021 June. 2022 Initial data is published to meet BO data standards. Nov. 2021 June 2023 Data is made available in bulk format for competent authorities and other designated persons and agencies. Nov. 2021 June 2023 Roadmap and risk assessment developed on the policies towards wider public availability of BO data. Nov. 2021 June 2023 Publish annually data on the number of persons accessing information on BO of companies. Nov. 2021 June 2023 Capacity building and training sessions for government and nongovernment stakeholders (NGOs, Investigating Journalists, OGP and GHEITI) through opening extractive programme on using BO data Nov 2021 June 2023 Pilot use of BO data in the due diligence process before awarding a mining license to avoid conflict of interest Nov. 2021 June 2023
IRM Midterm Status Summary
Commitment 9. Beneficial Ownership Transparency
● Verifiable: Yes
● Does it have an open government lens? Yes
● Potential for results: Modest
As written, this commitment lays important groundwork through mostly internal government reforms to strengthen the beneficial ownership transparency regime. It is considered to have modest potential for results, as the commitment text does not state how implementation would open government to citizens. However, Ghana’s OGP Steering Committee clarified through comments to the IRM that this commitment will make beneficial ownership information available to the public. An online portal is under trial and intended for public release in 2023. Ghana Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) intends to publish beneficial ownership information in the extractives sector in their annual reports. The government also intends to provide training to civil society and the media on how to make use of beneficial ownership data.  Those implementing the commitment are encouraged to detail these activities in the revised commitment to clarify how implementation will open government. Such a revised commitment would facilitate implementation and enable Ghana to receive recognition for the full ambition of this reform.