Business License in Maldives

Business License in Maldives

To operate a business legally in the Maldives you must obtain specific business license depends on the type of business you want to operate.  According to the law, both foreign and local investors must obtain a business license in Maldives.  For example, if you're going to operate a trading business in the Maldives, you must obtain an import/export business license. However, this article is going to describe the procedure of obtaining necessary business licenses/permits in the Maldives.

Trade license/permits for selling imported goods in shop

  • To obtain a trade permit for selling any imported good, the applicant needs to submit a “Trade Permit Application form.
  • Submit a copy of the certificate (given by Municipality) to the building of operation of the business.
  • Only company directors are allowed to submit necessary forms to the responsible government bodies. Each form must have an official company seal/ stamp.
  • A copy of the identification card of the directors must be attached to the forms.
  • Fill up the form with at least three trade names.

What are you are required to pay?

  • Once the name is registered, you need to pay a monthly fee in advance.
  • If you are operating a shop on an island that has a population of more than 10000 then you are required to pay Mrf. 200
  • You want to operate your business on the uninhabited island you need to pay Mrf. 200/per month.
  • Once you submit the advanced monthly fees, your permits will be issued as soon as possible (within two working days).
  • If you want to make the payments by check, remember the cheque must have a bank guarantee stamp.

Obtaining Permit/license for selling imported good in Online

license for selling imported good in Online

To obtain the permit for selling imported goods online, you must submit a trade permit application to the Ministry of Economic and Development. The application must contain domain names that have been registered under your name. Moreover, the application must contain information about the individual who submits the forms (the individual must be a company director). The individual must attach his or her ID card with the application form.

  • You must submit at least three domain names.
  • The domain name must be unique.
  • The domain name can be registered as a business name.

Upon the verification of the documents, your local domain ( will be registered.

Business license for restaurants, canteen and cafe

Business license for restaurants, canteen and cafe

The restaurant business in the Maldives is considered one of the most attractive business.  Many foreign investors prefer to start a restaurant business rather than starting another business. The restaurant business is profitable in the Maldives because of most of the tourists. Most of the tourists prefer to eat in a restaurant rather than cooking. However, to operate a restaurant business in the Maldives, you need to obtain the necessary business license. The process of obtaining a restaurant permit are discussed below –

  • You are required to submit the trade permit request with all the necessary documents that are specified on the forms.
  • You also need to submit a copy of the certificate that is given by the Male Municipalities.
  • Attach Director Identification Card with the application form.
  • All the forms should have an official company stamp.
  • If your requested name does not end with the restaurant, however, the preferred name will be registered with restaurants.

You do not need to obtain any special permission for operating a restaurant business. Once your restaurant is registered, you are good to go. However, once the restaurant name is registered, you will receive a slip from the Ministry that has all the information about your business. You must take this slip to the Maldives drug and food and authority for verification. The drug and food authority will verify the standard of restaurant/canteen/café before you receive the certification.

Standard for restaurants

  • The restaurant must have a door providing direct access from outside.
  • The restaurant building should be constructed well with a cement wall.
  • The restaurant must have air-conditioned in all sectors.
  • Must have separate bathroom/ washroom for staff and customer.
  • Should have enough lighting
  • The kitchen of the restaurant needs to be designed well so that smoke does not disturb any customer.

Business Permits for Vehicles

Business Permits for Vehicles

For obtaining the permit for the sale of imported goods for vehicles, you are required to submit a trade permit application form. This permit is given only to import goods such as petroleum, diesel, and kerosene. Like all other business mentioned above, the process of registering the name of the company is similar.

Once the name of your business is registered, the applicant needs to pay monthly fees of Mrf. 200. You will receive the permits once the receipt of the monthly fees is submitted. However, all the registered vehicles needed to be registered at the Ministry of Transport, Housing and Environment. The registered vehicles will have road permits/licenses for more than one month.

Export & Import Business License in Maldives

Export and Import business licenses in Maldives are essential for exporting and importing goods in Maldives and from Maldives to other parts of the world. To obtain export and import license in Maldives, the applicant is required to submit an application at the Ministry of Economic and Development. To obtain these licenses your business must make a revenue stamp and it will be charged at a rate of 10 laari per 100 MVR worth of import and export products. Remember: you must register your business first before you apply for an export and import license.

Document Requirement

  • Export and import license application form
  • National identification card of the applicant
  • Must have a revenue stamp
  • Copy of payment receipt
  • Company incorporation document
  • Copy of Trade License.

There are lots of other business sectors that need also needs permits/license. However, if you face any difficulties registering a business in Maldives, feel free to contact us. We provide all kinds of business-related services such as business advisory, auditing, accounting, bookkeeping, business registration, and many others.

Read also: How to register a company in Maldives

Why choose us?

S&F Consulting firm has expert professionals who have several years of experience working in the Maldives. Our experienced professionals will assist you with any types of business problems regarding business registration, auditing, accounting, etc. Our fees are comparatively cheap than others. We highly maintain customer confidentiality and privacy. Now you can check small business ideas in Maldives.

Frequently Asked Question

Where to apply for export/import license in Maldives?

  • You can apply for export or import license at Ministry of Economics and Development of Maldives.

Where to obtain TIN in Maldives?

  • The tax identification number can be obtained from the Register of Companies in Maldives.

Is it safe to visit in Malaysia?

  • Maldives is completely safe country for visitors, there is not political violation or terrorist threat in the country.

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