Liaison Office

A “Liaison Office” means a place of business to act as a channel of communication between the principal place of business or head office and entities in India but which does not undertake any commercial / trading / industrial activity, directly or indirectly. A liaison office is not permitted to undertake any business activity in India and cannot earn any income in India and, therefore, is required to maintain itself out of inward remittances received from the overseas head office. The activities of the liaison office are typically restricted to the following:

  • Representing the parent company or group companies in India;
  • Promoting exports from and imports to India;
  • Promoting technical and financial collaborations between parent or group companies and companies in India; and
  • Acting as a channel of communication between the parent company and Indiancompanies.

Key Process& Documents

For setting up a liaison office in India, approval from Reserve Bank of India is required. Further, the company is required to be registered with Registrar of Companies (ROC) which completes the Liaison Office Setup process.

The following are the key documents required for setting up a liaison office in India :

  • 2 copies of Certificate of Incorporation / Registration (notarised and attested by Indian Embassy) (one copy each for RBI & ROC). If it is in language other than English, then its translation notarised and attested by Indian Embassy is required.
  • 2 copies of Memorandum & Articles of Association (English translation) notarised and attested by Indian Embassy
  • Details of last three years’ Import Into / Export From India (5 copies on letter-head, signed with stamp)
  • Latest 3 years’ Audited Balance Sheet (English translation) notarised / attested by Indian Embassy
  • Existing arrangements, if any, in India e.g. direct / indirect agent
  • Details of existing Indian client(s), if any
  • Details of activities to be undertaken in India
  • Details of products / services to be rendered in India by parent company. Also, provide some literature like brochures / catalogs of products and literature on the company, if any.