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Guide to start a Business in Timor-Leste

Staff Reporter | 4:05 AM |

Formal registration of companies has many immediate benefits for the companies and for business owners and employees. Legal entities can outlive their founders. Resources are pooled as several shareholders join forces to start a company. Formally registered companies have access to services and institutions from courts to banks as well as to new markets. And their employees can benefit from protections provided by the law. An additional benefit comes with limited liability companies. These limit the financial liability of company owners to their investments, so personal assets of the owners are not put at risk. Where governments make registration easy, more entrepreneurs start businesses in the formal sector, creating more good jobs and generating more revenue for the government.


Below is a detailed summary of the bureaucratic and legal hurdles faced by entrepreneurs wishing to incorporate and register a new firm in Timor-Leste. It examines the procedures, time and cost involved in launching a commercial or industrial firm with up to 50 employees and start-up capital of 10 times the economy's per-capita gross national income.

This information was collected from World Bank: Doing Business 
No.ProcedureTime to CompleteAssociated Costs
1Deposit minimum capital at the Bank1 dayno charge
2Verify uniqueness of company name, register the name, and file company statute at the Ministry of Justice3 weeksno charge
3Publish statutes in the official gazette30 daysno charge
4Apply to tax identification number (TIN)7 daysno charge
5Notify labor department2 daysno charge
6Apply for temporary business license at the Ministry of Tourism, Commerce and Industry21 daysUSD 105
7Obtain a company stamp2 daysUSD 10
8Obtain the final company certificate (matricula do comercio)10 daysno charge