Business Licenses overview
According to the “Business Licensing Ordinance” (Vestigingsverordening Bedrijven) everyone requires a license to establish a company in Aruba.
The division Businesses License receives and processes applications:
- to establish business in Aruba,
- to change an existing license and,
- to act as director of a Limited Liability Company.
Businesses, in which no large investment is involved and no specific know-how is required, are reserved for local entrepreneurs.
An application for a business license, a director’s license, to relocate a business or to change the objective of an established business in accordance with the “Business Licensing Ordinance” has to be directed to the Minister of Finance, Economic Affairs and Culture at the attention of the Director of the Department of Economic Affairs, Commerce and Industry (DEACI), located in the 2nd floor of Sun Plaza Building, L.G. Smith Boulevard no. 160, Oranjestad, Aruba.
The legal representative has to fill out an application form (in the Dutch language). To be taken into consideration this application should be submitted, together with a receipt stamp of AWG 4.00, a receipt of prepayment for the legal dues, and according to the guidelines, together with all the required documents, at abovementioned department.
As of September 1, 2009 according Legesbesluit Directie Economische Zaken, Handel en Industrie 2009 (AB 2009 no. 74, AB 2010 no. 104), it is required to pay the legal dues in advance to submission of application. Without payment of the corresponding fees, the application is not accepted.
The procedure for submitting of the application and prepayment is as follows:
1. Submit at the Department of Economic Affairs, Commerce & Industry, the corresponding application and the necessary documents, to receive a payment order to make the payment.
2. You can immediately pay at our office with your Bank Debit Card, pay the corresponding amount at your bank account or pay online with internet banking (confirmation received) to the bank account of the Department of Finance.
3. Submit proof of payment (and the under point 1 mentioned documents) at the Department of Economic Affairs, Commerce and Industry to initiate the processing of the license.
When introducing an application (for a new company), the legal representative of the business has to give additional information (interview) on the application to be submitted.
As stated in the law, the Chamber of Commerce has an advisory task in this procedure and a similar invitation may also be received from the Chamber.
DEACI can, depending the business activity, ask for advice from other departments/authority, like among others the Civil Aviation department, Department of Health.
Only after mentioned interview(s) and after having received the advice of the Chamber of Commerce and eventually from other departments, the DEACI can finalize the application for a license.
An application will be approved if this complies to the “Business Licensing Ordinance” and according with the Guidelines for the Establishment of Businesses.
For any additional information, please contact the Helpdesk at 297-5212400.
Request a business license
To establish a business in Aruba, a Business License is necessary. If you are born in Aruba and you have the Dutch nationality or you are nationalized as a Dutch citizen in Aruba and are 18 years or older you do not need to apply for a business license if you want to start a Sole Proprietorship (EZ) or General Partnership or to become the director of a Corporation (NV) or a Limited Liability Company (VBA).
However a business license is required if you are born in Aruba but you do not have the Dutch nationality, or you are not born in Aruba but you have the Dutch nationality, but you are not naturalized as a Dutch citizen in Aruba.
Also a business license is required if you are not born in Aruba and you have another nationality and you want to start a Sole Proprietorship (EZ) or other legal entities such as a General Partnership (VOF), a Corporation (NV), a Limited Liability Company (VBA) or other legal entities. Application for a business license can be done at the Department of Economic Affairs & Industry, Commerce and Industry (DEACI).
In some cases, background screening process of the shareholder(s) and director(s) is/are required.
- Granting of license pursuant to the Business License ordinance does not imply automatic approval of other required licenses.
- Pursuant to the Regional development ordinance, all business types are required to have an adequate place of business.
- The activities per location should be related to each other at all times.
The Business licensing ordinance is not applicable to:
- Companies in the Free zone;
- Credit institutions;
- Insurance companies;
- Trust companies;
- Businesses pertaining to public law;
- Agriculture, livestock and fishery businesses (as Sole proprietorship).
An application must comply with the Business Licensing Guidelines (This booklet will help you among other things understand the licensing requirements for your business entity type) and must be submitted at the Department of Economic Affairs. Please, fill in the business application form and submit it together with a stamp of Afl. 4,00 and the required documents (see here below for business application form and required documents).