A guide to starting a business in Australia

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Starting a business in Australia is incredible if you want to establish commercial relationships with markets in Asia or the South Pacific or get to know the local market. The good news is that starting a business in Australia is a straightforward process with five key steps. Australia has had two decades of economic growth and is ranked 14th out of 190 countries for how easy it is to build a business. Its GDP of $1.39 trillion and foreign direct investment inflow of $40 billion show Australia has a dynamic economy, with 80% in services and a thriving mining sector.

Step 1: Choose your business structure

You must choose a business structure that suits your company’s needs. Australia’s most common business structures are sole traders, companies, partnerships, and trusts. You must pay attention to key factors to select the best one. These include licensing, taxes, personal liability, and control over your business assets.

Step 2: Request an Australian Business Number (ABN) and register your company name

The Australian Business Number, or ABN, is a unique 11-digit number that identifies your business. The ABN allows you to distinguish your business from others regarding orders and invoices. You can also claim goods and services tax (GST) credits. Finally, it can get you an Australian domain name. Remember to have an identifiable name to stand out from the competition. You must obtain an ABN through the Business Registration Service.

Step 3: Apply for a tax file number (TFN) when starting a business

You must have a tax file number, or TFN, used by the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) for individuals and organizations. The type of TFN will depend on your business structure (step 1). Once you obtain the TFN, you must check the taxes that could apply to your business, like income tax, capital gains tax, pay-as-you-go withholding tax, pay-as-you-go installments tax, goods and services tax, and payroll tax. The taxes match your business type, number of employees, and benefits.

Step 4: Set up record-keeping and accounting systems

Once you run the business, the ATO requires an income tax return to be filed at the end of every year. You must declare your business income and deductions. You can file annual reports or returns and declarations of business activity. Your records must be in English, and you should keep them for five years.

Step 5: Manage your business insurance

Some types of business insurance are mandatory, such as workers’ compensation, general liability, and third-party liability. If you have multiple employees, the first is obligatory; the second protects your business from death or injury to third parties. The last is mandatory if the company owns a motor vehicle.

Australia Visitor Visa

If you’re ready to set up your business in Australia, you should visit the country first to check out the market. Obtaining an Australia Visitor Visa is the most reliable way to ensure hassle-free entry. This mandatory travel document allows access for tourism purposes. iVisa is the ideal partner to process your electronic visa application. Apply now and travel soon!