Setting up a company in Saudi Arabia

Being the biggest exporter of oil in the world, Saudi Arabia has been involved in international trade for a long time. The country has since expanded the number of businesses it operates in, including those related to telecommunication, travel, energy, healthcare, and hospitality. Consequently, enticing visitors to learn about the procedures involved in company setup in Saudi Arabia.

In this article, we will be talking about the essential things of setting up a business in Saudi Arabia. The country still places a lot of focus on growing its economy and courting foreign investment. The Saudi Vision 2030 financial strategy gives importance to business creation in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, international investment in innovative industry sectors, and Saudi’s financial integration with the nations of the world.

Why do Business Setup in Saudi Arabia?

Company Setup in Saudi Arabia

If you are thinking about starting a business abroad, the KSA is among the most sought-after locations in the world. Since Saudi Arabia has the largest economy of all the MENA region’s countries, doing business there is a highly wise decision. You have several reasons to locate your firm here, from simple company setup in Saudi Arabia to favorable tax efficiency.

The following are some advantages of company registration in Saudi Arabia:

  • Saudi Arabia is attempting to position itself as a significant IT centre. As a result, they began a number of projects totaling over a billion dollars. Furthermore, it increased the GDP contribution of technology to well over AED 50 billion.
  • The KSA is shown a strong determination to diversify its economy away from the oil and gas sector. By considerably assisting emerging enterprises across a range of industries, they contribute to a bigger, safer, and stronger economy. If you support the economy of the country, Saudi Arabia will offer you a very successful business climate regardless of your industry.
  • Everyone is currently being welcomed with open arms in the area. With this strategy, foreign investors and visitors can be sure that the country is making sincere efforts to ensure their happiness. Locals are also known for greeting guests and creating a friendly environment that inspires them to make investments in the country.
  • When you want to do company setup in Saudi Arabia or make an investment here, be sure to look for a site that is suitable for you. Additionally, new business owners must consider all facets of tax efficiency. Saudi Arabia is one of the top options due to its leadership in this area. The amount of personal income tax that foreign investors are required to pay is little.

How to Get a License to Setup a Business

According to Saudi Vision 2030, the Ministry of Investing of Saudi Arabia (MISA) is promoting company establishment in Saudi Arabia in order to transform the nation’s economy. In addition to actively promoting new prospects for international investors, it also makes sure the procedure is simple and open to everyone.

All that remains for you to do to company setup in Saudi Arabia:

  • Get your MISA license.
  • Decide if you want to create a JSC or an LLC for your business in Saudi Arabia.
  • Register with the necessary government organizations.

Your ticket to starting a business in Saudi Arabia is a MISA license.

Previously referred to as the SAGIA license, it helps foreign companies to grow in Saudi Arabia by permitting full foreign ownership of companies without any local backing or capital constraints, ensuring that your company is 100% yours.

The best and most effective approach to enter and make investments in the Saudi market is to obtain a MISA license. This is why:

  • It goes well and quickly.
  • It permits you to be the only proprietor of your business and to have total ownership of it.
  • You will be qualified to submit loan applications all across the area.
  • Your ability to repatriate an unlimited quantity of money.
  • Without a local sponsor, it enables you to participate in the Saudi market.

All you have to do to start the MISA license application process is provide copies of the necessary commercial documents:

  • Articles of Association.
  • Commercial registration.
  • Financial statement.

The necessary government departments must additionally approve certain sectors or industries. This is only applicable to the investment categories that are closed to foreigners.

You might need to get permission prior or following filing for a license if your company operates in one of the banned industries.

Required Documents to Set Up a Company

To start business in Saudi Arabia, you must provide the following documents:

  • License application form.
  • Board resolution with:
    • Partner’s names.
    • Partner’s capital shares.
  • Financial statements.
  • Articles of Association.
  • Valid passports.
  • Proof of ID.
  • Proof of address.
  • Power of Attorney.

How to Setup a Company in Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabian authorities are quite likely to back up foreigners who want to open a business there as long as they go by the rules. Businesses without local partners are now eligible for a Saudi Arabia a company license to function and maintain a 100% foreign ownership, depending on the industry. For instance, businesses that conduct commercial activities require at least 25% ownership locally, whereas businesses engaging in services may have 100% foreign ownership.

So, how can you do company setup in Saudi Arabia? Here is how:

Obtain the license

When beginning a business in Saudi Arabia, the Ministry of Investment (MISA) is the best location to start. MISA is the principal agency in charge of overseeing international investments. International companies that want to open up shop in Saudi Arabia must obtain a foreign investment license through MISA.

The license application contains particular criteria that must be met in order for MISA to ensure that your business conforms with their laws and development objectives. Your company can begin preparing for expansion after the license was officially granted, which will aid in the expansion of the KSA economy. Applications for licenses are normally processed within 2-4 weeks.

Do not neglect renewing your permit each year after starting your business in Saudi Arabia. To maintain compliance with KSA standards.

Company registration

A crucial component of your business setup is the registration of your company name in Saudi Arabia with the Saudi Chamber of Commerce (CoC). The CoC provides a crucial venue for verifying and endorsing all corporate papers made public by companies. To proceed with post-licensing procedures, such as the issuing of employee visas, this step is necessary. Your company can make sure that the documents it produces are trustworthy and accurate by working with the CoC.

Commercial license

After acquiring your MISA license, the following step is to establish your business with the Ministry of Commerce (MoC). The Saudi Companies Law mandates that, since the MoC acts as the statutory registration for all firms in Saudi Arabia, its Articles of Association (AoA) must be in compliance with this law.

Upon MoC approval, a digital commercial registry (CR), which acts as both your company’s certificate of incorporation and local trade license, will be in place. Depending on when an external license is approved, the processing period for CR issuance is typically between two and four weeks. Renew your CR once a year to keep it active.


To provide work permits and visas to non-Saudi employees, your company must register with the Ministry of Labor (MoL). Your company can apply for employment permissions and licenses for its foreign employees once registration is complete. Compliance with the MoL’s standards and regulations is essential.

Cost of Setting Up a Business in Saudi Arabia

Company Setup in Saudi Arabia

Several factors will affect the cost of opening a company in Saudi Arabia. Included in this are the types of companies in Saudi Arabia, the amount of money you plan to invest, and the fees charged by various regulatory agencies. Here is a list of some startup costs for company setup in Saudi Arabia:

  • Commercial registration: A commercial certificate of registration costs around SAR 500 ($133) from MOCI.
  • Municipality license: It varies by the location of the firm. It could cost between 1,000 SAR ($267) and 5,000 SAR ($1,334).
  • Foreign Investment License: The FIL may cost between 3,000 SAR ($800) and 8,000 SAR ($2,133) contingent upon the size and nature of your firm.
  • Minimum capital requirement: There are several minimum capital requirements, depending on the kind of business you want to start in Saudi Arabia. A limited liability company (LLC), for instance, needs SAR 10,000 ($2,667) in equity.
  • Professional fees: You might need to pay professional fees to advisors who can help you with the company setup in Saudi Arabia process, such as accountants, attorneys, and auditors. The cost of these services will vary depending on your company’s intricacy and the scope of the services provided.

The total cost to launch a company in Saudi Arabia can range from SAR 15,000 to SAR 30,000. This, depending on the type of enterprise and the services necessary. It is essential to work with a reliable specialist who will walk you through the process. Plus, provide you with an in-depth review of the charges.

Now that you know everything regarding company setup in Saudi Arabia, get in touch with our team! At SCF we are more than ready to give you the support you need to start operating in the area. Let us manage your corporate needs and enjoy of top-notch business formation solutions from our experts.

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