Beginning August 1st this year, people wanting to start their own business will no longer have to pay fees or go through the lengthy process of a business license.

To start a business in the next financial year, you can complete an easy, online business incorporation and tax registration, then you’re in business –– it’s that simple. There’s no longer a need to fork out the money or the time it takes to obtain a business licence.

“Now, there is some guidance around this. Once they’ve registered with the Companies Office, low-risk businesses –– take, for example, a shoe store –– can open their doors and start selling to customers immediately. Other higher risk businesses, which involve people’s health, such as restaurants, will need to tick a few more regulatory boxes before starting operations,” said Minister for Economy Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum.

He explained that the philosophy behind this move is important as it is a more efficient approach puts us in a league with highly-developed economies, like New Zealand, that don’t require business licences, but instead focus their time and energy on the compulsory registration of all businesses.

“So now, rather than standing between entrepreneurs and their enterprises, regulators will be focusing on enforcement. And rather than forcing business owners to seek innumerable and oftentimes irrelevant approvals to begin business, they will only need to tick the regulatory boxes that suit their industry over a more reasonable timeline.”

“Behind the scenes, the Registrar of Companies, the National Fire Authority, OHS, the Central Board of Health, and others will be coordinating that national effort to enforce compliance. But we’re not going to waste their resources double-checking the same regulatory boxes. If a business sets up in a building which has already been certified by the relevant authorities, there’s no need for them to obtain new certifications for already-approved operations.”

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