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In this page: Accounting Rules | Tax Rates | Intellectual Property | Legal Framework | Standards | Business Practices


Accounting Rules

Tax Year
From 1st April to 31st March. Alternative balance sheet dates are generally allowed by the Inland Revenue Department upon application.
Accounting Standards
For the full list of approved standards please access the Institute of Chartered Accountants' website.
Accounting Regulation Bodies
Audit New Zealand
Accounting Standards Review Board (ASRB)
Accounting Reports
The accounting structure is described in the GAAP (Generally Accepted Accounting Practice) on the New Zealand Treasury website. The annual report has to include a balance sheet, a profit and loss account and a cash flow statement.
Publication Requirements
The "Financial Reporting Act" of 1993 forces any organization to produce an annual report of the financial flows within the 5 months preceding the end of the accounting year, before disclosure to the "Registrar of Companies" for agreement. Only companies quoted in the stock exchange have to publish their accounts. According to the law of transferable securities and the law of exchange, registrants must file to the Ministry of Finance the annual and biannual statement reports, as well as a copy in the foreign exchange markets where transferable securities are registered.
Professional Accountancy Bodies
NZICA , New Zealand Institute of Chartered Accountants
Certification and Auditing
The control of accounts must be made by a company certified by the NZICA and recognized as a "Chartered Accountant". The NZ Institute of Chartered accountants is New Zealand's only professional accounting body. It has three membership groupings: chartered accountants, associate chartered accountants, and accounting technicians.
You van contact an external auditor: Deloitte, KPMG, Ernst & Young and PricewaterhouseCoopers.
Accounting News
The Chartered Accountants Journal of New Zealand
IAS Plus

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Tax Rates

Consumption Taxes

Nature of the Tax
Good and Services tax (GST).
Tax Rate
Reduced Tax Rate
Zero rating applies to exports, international passenger transport and certain international services. Exemptions include certain financial and insurance services, residential rents and the sale of a building used for residential letting for at least 5 years before sale.
Other Consumption Taxes
Excise duty is levied on petroleum products, tobacco, and alcohol. The excise duties are levied item-by-item at rates that vary considerably.

Learn more about Service Providers in New-Zealand on, the Directory for International Trade Service Providers.

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Corporate Taxes

Company Tax
Capital Gains Taxation
Capital gains are not taxed in New Zealand.
Main Allowable Deductions and Tax Credits
You can consult the list of deduction on the taxation department website and the list of claimable business expenses.
Other Corporate Taxes
Fringe benefit tax (FBT), social security contributions, local government property tax, employer superannuation contribution tax (ESCT), fund withdrawal tax (FWT).
Other Domestic Resources
Consult Doing Business Website, to obtain a summary of the taxes and mandatory contributions.

Country Comparison For Corporate Taxation

  New-Zealand OECD United States Germany
Number of Payments of Taxes per Year 8.0 12.0 11.0 9.0
Time Taken For Administrative Formalities (Hours) 152.0 176.0 175.0 207.0
Total Share of Taxes (% of Profit) 33.5 42.7 46.7 46.8

Source: Doing Business - Last Available Data.

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Individual Taxes

Tax Rate

Individual Income Tax Progressive rate from 10,5% to 33%
Up to NZD 14,000 10.5%
NZD 14,001 to 48,000 17.5%
NZD 48,001 to 70,000 30%
NZD 70,001 and above 33%
Allowable Deductions and Tax Credits
Working for Families Tax Credits, child support, tax credits for working parents, and taxation of family trusts and property agreements. For more details go on this website.
Special Expatriate Tax Regime
There is no special expatriate tax regime in New Zealand.

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Double Taxation Treaties

Countries With Whom a Double Taxation Treaty Have Been Signed
See the list of the tax conventions signed by New Zealand.
Withholding Taxes
Dividends: 0/15/30%; interest: 15%; Royalties: 15%.

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Sources of Fiscal Information

Tax Authorities
New Zealand Customs Service
Other Domestic Resources
Policy Advise Division

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Learn more about Taxes and Accounting in New-Zealand on, the Directory for International Trade Service Providers.

Intellectual Property

National Organizations
For more information go to the web sites of the two regulation bodies: the Intellectual Property Office of New Zealand and the Copyright Council of New Zealand. You can also consult the Intellectual Property Policy on the Ministry of Economic Development website.
Regional Organizations
New Zealand is a member of the Intellectual Property Rights Experts Group (IPEG) of the APEC community.
International Membership
Member of the WIPO (World Intellectual Property Organization)
Signatory to the Paris Convention For the Protection of Intellectual Property
Membership to the TRIPS agreement - Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS)

National Regulation and International Agreements

Type of property and law Validity International Agreements Signed
Patents Act 1953 No 64 (as at 01 August 2008) and Patents Regulations 1954 (SR 1954/211) (as at 03 September 2007).

Decisions of the Commissioner since 1953 are published at

20 years Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT)
Trade Marks Act 2002
10 years renewable for 12 month
In New Zealand, the Designs Act 1953 governs the administration of rights to a design. It is accompanied by the  Design Regulations 1954
15 years  
10 years. WIPO Copyright Treaty
Industrial Models
Copyright Act 1994.


For more information go to this website.

Over 50 Years  

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Legal Framework

Independence of Justice
The judiciary system is independent in New Zealand.
Equal Treatment of Nationals and Foreigners
Foreign nationals can expect an impartial trial from the country’s judicial system.
The Language of Justice
English and Maori are, as the country official languages, the two judicial languages used in New Zealand.
Recourse to an Interpreter
It is possible to have access to an interpreter in New Zealand.
Sources of the Law and Legal Similarities
The system is modeled on the English common law, certain statutes of the United Kingdom Parliament enacted before 1947 (notably the Bill of Rights 1689), and statutes of the New Zealand Parliament. The main source of the law is the constitution which is composed of a series of legal documents, including certain acts of the UK and New Zealand Parliaments, as well as The Constitution Act of 1986. The legal system is based on English law, having special land legislation and land courts for the country’s Maori population. New Zealand accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction but with reservations. 
Checking National Laws Online
Law Access
Lexadin, the world law guide

Learn more about Lawyers and Legal in New-Zealand on, the Directory for International Trade Service Providers.

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National Standards Organizations
Standards New Zealand
Integration in the International Standards Network
The standards in New Zealand are copied from those prevailing in Great Britain. The Standard Association of New Zealand, the competent organization in the field of standards is member of the International Organization for Standardization (ISO), the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC), and is active in the Pacific Area Standards Congress (PASC) and the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC).
Classification of Standards
Online Consultation of Standards
The publication of standards is entrusted to Standards New Zealand.
Certification Organizations
International Accreditation New Zealand The national authority for the accreditation of testing and calibration laboratories, inspection bodies and radiology services.

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Business Practices

General Information
Kwintessential, New Zealand Business Practices.
Opening Hours and Days
The normal working week is five days, Monday through Friday. The standard day for commercial establishments, bank and public (civil) service is generally 8.30 am to 5.00 pm, with a one hour lunch break. In most cities, retail stores are open seven days per week with at least one late night each week, often Thursday or Friday.

Public Holidays

New Years Day January 1
Day after New Year’s Day January 2
Waitangi Day (New Zealand National Day) February 6
Good Friday Variable
Easter Monday Variable
Anzac Day April 25
Queen’s Birthday (Observed) First Monday in June
Labor Day Fourth Monday in October
Christmas Day December 25
Boxing Day December 26
Provincial Anniversary Day Dates vary from province to province

Periods When Companies Usually Close

End of year Usually 1 week around New Year

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Last Updates: October 2014