How to Start a Business in Qatar? | A Guide

How to Start a Business in Qatar? | A Guide

If you are planning to set up a business in Qatar, you are at the right place. Exports in Qatar have always been considerably more than imports. Do you know that Qatar had a total export of 72,934,956.29 in thousands of US$ and total imports of 29,178,064.57 in thousands of US$ leading to a positive trade balance of 43,756,891.72 in thousands of US$ in 2019? The second reason why you should explore the business opportunities in Qatar is its excellent infrastructure and monetary stability. You have to pay less tax in Qatar in comparison to other major countries of the world.

Moreover, the Qatar government has committed to spending $200 billion on its country's infrastructure by the year 2030 as a part of the development plan. All these factors together make Qatar a profitable business workplace. But one has to consider a lot of factors before inaugurating a business in Qatar. The factors include the legal system, administration, taxation, employing staff, finding a perfect corporate place, and other valuable resources. In this guide, we will illustrate how one can establish a Business in Qatar. Let's dive in and explore Qatar's business opportunities first.

Business Opportunities to Explore in Qatar
The Basics to Start a Business in Qatar
How to Register Your Business in Qatar?
Taxation System of Qatar
Visa to Obtain in Qatar for Business
Business Insurance One Should Undertake in Qatar

Small Business Ideas in Qatar

Business Opportunities to Explore in Qatar

Growth of Real GDP Qatar from 2019 to 2024
Growth of Real GDP Qatar from 2019 to 2024

First of all, you should explore the business opportunities in Qatar as per your skills, interests and investment capacity. Since Qatar is becoming a global economic hub, there are too many fields in which a business person can invest to obtain profits. Here is a list of possible business opportunities in Qatar:

Delivery Business

The world is transforming and depending on the internet. Online deliveries have expanded their legs everywhere when it comes to shopping. Everyone wants to have different choices and deliveries at their home. So, a delivery for eCommerce businesses can also be an opportunity worth exploring in Qatar.

Restaurants or Cafes

Do you know that a major fraction of Qatar is filled with migrants? Such people miss their country's food and native cuisines. So, you can opt for a restaurant where American, Indian, or Chinese food is available to fulfil customers' cravings.

Interior Designing

Qatar is mostly occupied by wealthy people. As a result of which, people keep investing in expanding their luxurious lives, and transforming their hotels, homes, or offices. So, if you have a keen interest in designing, then interior designing can prove to be a boon in obtaining substantial earnings.  

Maintenance Services Business

There is no doubt that Qatar is premature in technology. So, when it comes to repairing machines, maintenance remains an affordable option for people rather than changing the machine. Hence, maintenance services for electrical gadgets, mechanical machinery, plumbing, etc. could be a field to opt for business.

Financial Overhauls

If you have a potbelly for finances, then financial services are one of the most profitable industries in Qatar. An increase in Qatar's GDP makes it necessary for people to undertake financial services for their businesses. You can opt for either wealth management, commercial banking, retail banking, or anything summing up financial overhauls.

Lastly, it all depends upon one's interests and investment capacity to explore different business opportunities in Qatar.

Best Financial Business Ideas For 2021 | Financial Industry
Out of a pool of finance-related business ideas, we’ve listed 40 financial business ideas for you & also know how to build a finance business

The Basics to Start a Business in Qatar

Annual Export Value Growth in Qatar in 2021 (by destination)
Annual Export Value Growth in Qatar in 2021 (by destination)
  • First of all, you will need to appoint or find a Qatari sponsor or founder for your business. Preparing a sponsor with authorized entities is the very first requirement.
  • Secondly, the company has to undertake a commercial registration by the MOCI (Ministry of Commerce and Industry). Make sure the documentation of the legal procedure is completed in the Arabic language. The English translation of documentation can be followed afterwards. You can find all the legal procedures in commercial companies' principles.
  • Most of the time, foreigners can hold only 49% of the total share capital of the company while the remaining 51% share comes under the control of the Qatari shareholders. However, the Minister of Economics and Trade can authorize a holding of foreign investors in certain industries (eg. healthcare, agriculture, Information Technology, Education, etc.) to surpass 49% to 100%, provided the company is compatible with the development plans of Qatar.
  • The company requires at least two Qatari shareholders and QAR 200,000 of share capital for starting a business in Qatar.

How to Register Your Business in Qatar?

Once you have fulfilled the basic requirements, it's time to register your Limited Liability Company (LLC) in Qatar. Here are the major requirements one needs for business registration in Qatar:

Commercial Residence

Application for Registration in the Commercial Register, Qatar
Application for Registration in the Commercial Register, Qatar

The very first step is to get a trade name for your company. Make sure the name has its connotation in Arabic. If it has a different meaning, then you have to pay QAR 1,000 more to register the name. The trade name along with a list of the stakeholders and their fraction of companies on the document will allow you to get Commercial Residence (CR). The CR will state the legality of your company.

Trade License

The second most important thing that is needed to register one's business in Qatar is the trade license. One needs to fill out and submit an application form with certain formalities attached. These include CR, owner's identification, other business authorities' identification, articles of incorporation, pictures of the office space, rental agreement, and building completion certification (in case of new construction).

Computer Card

Once you get your company seal officially registered in Qatar, you need to apply for a computer card. It is mandatory for a business owner in Qatar. To get this card you will need to submit certain documents. These include a copy of the identification of business partners and shareholders, a CR certificate, a trade licence, and the official company seal. Also, you have to submit proof for the application fee of QAR 200.

Taxation System of Qatar

Foreign businessmen in Qatar need to pay 10% tax on the profit obtained from the business which is comparatively lower than many countries of the world. This tax is known as withholding tax. If the business is wholly owned by Gulf Corporation Nationals or Qataris, then there will be no tax on profits. Tax is also not imposed in the case of nonprofit organizations, private associations, gross income from inheritances, wages, salaries, and allowances.

You will have to keep all records of tax payments as per Financial Reporting Standards. The tax year ends on 31 December in Qatar. After that, you will be allowed the time of the next four months to pay any of the taxes in the accounting period. In case there is any tax return, extension requests, or withholding tax statements, you will have to submit them through the tax department through TAS (Tax Administration System).

Top 7 Unusual Tax Rules around the World
Have you every heard of bribe tax or junk food tax?. In this article we have discussed these types of unusual taxes around the world.

Visa to Obtain in Qatar for Business

It is very important to have a valid visa before starting a business in Qatar. The following are some of the visas that one can obtain for indulging in business in Qatar:

  • Non-Qataris can obtain different kinds of visas from Qatar to operate their business as per their requirements. One can opt for a business visa for business operations. Such a visa is valid for only three months. This allows one to stay for thirty days per visit.
  • Another option is a 72-hour business visa. This is used by people who are looking forward to short business tours. You can expand its validity up to 72 hours if required.
  • Investor Visa is for foreigners who capitalize on a few selected ventures. The persons who are obtaining investor visas must have health checkup certificates, decent behaviour certificates, and investment ownership documents. One can even apply for an investor visa if he/she has property without any ownership.

How to Setup your Business in UAE as a Foreign Entrepreneur? (Explained in 7 Steps)
Are you planning to start a new business in UAE?, Here’s a guide to help you setup a business in UAE in 2021.

Business Insurance One Should Undertake in Qatar

Business Insurance is crucial for future security. Here is the list of insurances you can opt for in Qatar:

  • General Third Party Liability Insurance
  • Product Liability Insurance
  • Business Interruption Insurance
  • Property All Risk Insurance
  • Workmen’s Compensation Insurance


Hence, this was the guide on how to start a business in Qatar. Its low tax imposition and financial stability make it the best possible place to begin a business. You must consider all of the above factors before opening a business in Qatar. From obtaining visas, registrations, insurance, and taxes to licenses, everything should be up to date when you go for launching a business. Thus, starting a business in Qatar is a great opportunity to earn profits and gain experience at the same time.


Can foreigners own businesses in Qatar?

The law of Qatar does not allow foreigners to have 100% ownership of businesses in Qatar. Most of the time, foreigners can hold only 49% of the total share capital of the company while the remaining 51% share comes under the control of the Qatari shareholders.

Is there any tax in Qatar?

No, there is no income tax in Qatar. However, foreign businessmen in Qatar need to pay a 10% tax on the profit obtained from the business.

Is it good to do business in Qatar?

Qatar is a great place to do business for many reasons. These include its excellent infrastructure, monetary stability, no income taxes, and luxurious lifestyle.

Must have tools for startups - Recommended by StartupTalky

Read more