Registering a company in Lebanon is a process that involves selecting a company type, choosing a name, preparing documentation, and registering with the Ministry of Justice and Ministry of Finance. By following this guide and utilizing the provided resources, you should be well on your way to successfully establishing your business in Lebanon. Be sure to adhere to the requirements and guidelines to ensure a smooth registration process and a successful start for your company in this dynamic and diverse market.
Step 1: Choose your company type
The first step in registering a company in Lebanon is to choose the type of company you want to register. The most common types are:
- Limited Liability Company (Société à Responsabilité Limitée - SARL)
- Joint Stock Company (Société Anonyme Libanaise - SAL)
- Offshore Company
- Branch of a foreign company
Step 2: Choose a company name
Before registering your company, you'll need to choose a suitable name. The Ministry of Justice (MOJ) in Lebanon is responsible for approving company names. You can visit the MOJ's website here: http://www.justice.gov.lb
Step 3: Prepare the required documents
Next, prepare the necessary documentation for your chosen company type. The key documents are:
- Articles of Association (for SARL, SAL, and Offshore Company)
- Application for Company Registration (for all types)
These forms can be downloaded from the Ministry of Justice's website: http://www.justice.gov.lb
Step 4: Identify company officers and shareholders
You will need to identify at least one director (for SARL, SAL, and Offshore Company) or one representative (for Branch of a foreign company). Directors or representatives must be at least 18 years old. Shareholders can be individuals or corporate entities.
Step 5: Capital requirements
Lebanon requires a minimum capital of LBP 5,000,000 for SARLs, LBP 30,000,000 for SALs, and $1 for Offshore Companies. There is no minimum capital requirement for branches of foreign companies.
Step 6: Register your company
Once your documents are ready, you can submit your application to the Ministry of Justice. This can be done in person at their office or online via the following link: http://www.justice.gov.lb
The fees for registering a company are as follows:
- SARL: LBP 1,000,000 (approximately $660)
- SAL: LBP 2,000,000 (approximately $1,320)
- Offshore Company: LBP 2,000,000 (approximately $1,320)
- Branch of a foreign company: LBP 2,000,000 (approximately $1,320)
Step 7: Register for taxes
After your company is registered, you must register for taxes with the Ministry of Finance. This can be done in person at the local Tax Office or online via the following link: https://www.finance.gov.lb
Step 8: Obtain necessary permits and licenses
Depending on your business activities, you may need to obtain additional permits or licenses. Check with the relevant authorities and industry regulators for specific requirements.
The entire registration process, from preparing documents to receiving your Certificate of Incorporation, can take anywhere from 6 to 8 weeks, depending on the complexity of your application.