Ministry of Commerce and Industry (MOCI)

Ministry of Commerce and Industry (MOCI)

The Ministry of Commerce and Industry (MOCI) oversees industrial and commercial operations in Qatar while ensuring they align with the country’s development objectives. One of the MOCI’s objectives is to encourage investment, support business development, and enhance exports.  Furthermore, the MOCI collaborates with various banks to help businesses access financial resources to support their operations and growth. On the other hand, it works closely with multiple government sectors to provide businesses with the necessary approvals, licenses, and permits for their operations.    Previously, a local Qatari sponsor who holds a 51% ownership share was required to obtain a Company License under the MOCI. Recently, the Qatari government has eliminated the requirement for Qatari partners and allowed full ownership of the business for foreign investors.    
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    Benefits of Setting Up Company in Qatar Mainland with MOCI 
    • Foreign investors are granted 100% ownership of their business in Qatar, eliminating the Qatari sponsor or partner requirement. 
    • Foreign companies are exempted from Value Added Tax (VAT) and Income Tax, providing a favourable tax environment for business operations in Qatar. 
    • Foreign companies have no restrictions on the number of products or services they can sell in Qatar, allowing maximum market penetration and business growth. 
    • Foreign companies can participate in government and private tenders, enabling them to compete for lucrative contracts and expand their business opportunities in Qatar. 
      Please read our blog to learn more about the policy change of 100% ownership and the benefits foreign investors will get by setting up company in Qatar mainland. 

    Breaking Investment Barriers: Qatar Mainland Offers 100% Foreign Ownership 

    Document Requirements:

    These are the documents required for business formation in Qatar. Differences may occur depending on the type of corporate structuring, which is below:

    If the shareholder is a Body Corporate incorporated outside Qatar: 

    1. Certificate of Incorporation 
    2. Certificate proving good standing of the Company (if available) 
    3. Memorandum / Articles of Association 
    4. KYC Form of the Company 

     

    If the shareholder is a Body Corporate incorporated in Qatar:  

    1. Commercial Registration issued by the Ministry of Commerce & Industry 
    2. Valid Trade License issued by Ministry of Commerce & Industry 
    3. Articles of Association of the Company 
    4. Copy of a valid Establishment Card 
    5. KYC Form of the Company 

     

    If the shareholder is a Natural Person: 

    1. Valid passport copy of individual shareholder(s) 
    2. KYC Form of shareholder(s). [Notarized OR Signed before QFZA] 
    3. Copy of Qatar Identity. (applicable if the individual is a Qatari National / Resident)

    Steps and Timelines

    1

    Memorandum of Association (MOA) or Articles of Association (AOA) DraftingThis document outlines a Qatar company’s relevant details and objectives. It is completed with the assistance of a legal advisor, before being submitted to the Ministry of Commerce and Industry (MoCI) and attested by the Ministry of Justice. 

    2

    Company Name ReservationCompany names must comply with Qatar’s naming rules. Once a name is chosen, it’ll be reserved through MoCI.

    3

    Commercial Register Application – Qatar businesses need a Commercial Register (CR) from MoCI to open a corporate bank account, transact with customers, buy or own assets under the company, among others.

    4

    Office Space Securing Mainland Qatar businesses are required to have a physical office before they apply for a trade license. 

    5

    Tax Certificate Application Businesses must apply for a Tax Certificate within 30 days of getting the CR, to avoid penalization from the Ministry of Finance. 

    6

    Trade License Application If business formation is happening in mainland Qatar, the trade license will be obtained for MoCI. Meanwhile, each free zone has an authority that oversees applications. Either way, our business setup advisors will assist.

    7

    Computer Card Registration Computer Cards are necessary to hire employees and issue Residence Permits, while also indicating who can sign on its behalf. This document is obtained from the Qatar Immigration and Passport Control Office.  

    8

    Corporate Bank Account Opening Qatar businesses can open a bank account with the many local and international banks in the country. This is a necessary step prior to starting business operations.

    9

    Company Seal Application – Once the above steps are complete, Qatar companies can now get a company seal.