The total of shares issued, or authorized to be issued, by the company. The capital stated in the memorandum of association is the authorized capital. The company cannot issue more than this amount unless it first passes a resolution at a general meeting. The amount of capital usually appears in the company’s balance sheet, followed by a list of shares of various categories actually issued, under the heading ‘issued capital”, as opposed to paid-up capital. Which is the amount called up and paid on shares issued.
Reference: The Penguin Business Dictionary, 3rd edt.