In recent years, Qatar’s economy has been experiencing a steady growth of 10 per cent with the help of the Foreign Investment Law (No.13 of 2000) contributing in a large way to the growth. For many of the business sectors (such as agriculture, manufacturing, health, education, and tourism) the law allowed 100 per cent foreign ownership for the first time. The law also gave freedom to investors to repatriate all their profits to their country of origin as well as other forms of incentives.
On the 1st of Feb 2010, Law Number 1 of 2010 was issued in order to alter some of the procurements set by Law No 12 of 2000 to modify the investment of non-Qatari capital in key economic sectors. The revised law allowed 100 per cent foreign ownership in new industries such as consultancy services, information technology (IT), services associated to sports, culture, entertainment and distribution services. Qatar offers all the benefits of an exceedingly advanced economy, the framework and administrations that are able to have the same high level of international standards, facilitating productivity, quality and service.
Among the key benefits are:
- No income tax or social security deductions payable on wages and salaries
- No income or deductions on social security
- Zero per cent taxation on exports
- Foreign companies have corporate tax of 10 percent
- Foreign investors are permitted full repatriation of capital and profits overseas in foreign currency
- Corporate tax on foreign companies is 10% (as of 1 Jan 2010).
- Excellent modern telecommunications infrastructure
- The best international exhibitions and conference venues
- In terms of quality, the offices and residential accommodations are high
- The procedure of recruitment is relatively easy
- Inexpensive workforce
- Qatar has Luxury hotels, hospitals, schools, shopping malls and many more facilities
Qatar government‘s economic development strategy has been very successful combined with all the other contributing factors (which include, investment incentives, banking services, infrastructure, insurances, political and social strength) produces an ideal business environment for entrepreneurs seeking to open set up their business.
The Seven types of business you can have in Qatar are:
- Simple Partnership Company
- Joint Partnership Company
- Joint Venture Company
- Public Shareholding Company
- Limited Share Partnership Company
- Limited Liability Company
- Holding Companies
Out of these seven structures Limited Liability Companies are more commonly used by the foreign investors in Qatar. LLC entities require a company to have a minimum of one national partner (Qatari national) who must own a minimum of 51 per cent (share capital) of the company. Both parties profit share does not depend on their equity stakes in the business. If foreign investors want to open a company that comprises of mostly commercial business activities, a national partner is necessary.
Steps to be followed in the registration of a Qatar company :
- Need to find and identify the right Qatari national to assume the role of being a partner in the company. If it is a 100 per cent owned business then there certain documents that are needed in order to start processing the application (this is done at the Ministry of Business and Trade)
- Obtaining name and activity approval for new company.
- Bank Account opening with the minimum share capital of QAR 200,000.
- Preparation of the Articles of the Association for the company.
- Process all the important documents and get them attested from the Ministry of Justice
- Prepare and process all documents for a Municipality License and Immigration Card for the new company
- Once the commercial registration is issued, the share capital will be available to either the directors or the general member so that they can perform business functions and operate the company.