15 steps to incorporating in Kuwait
- Consultation phase: Prior to starting the Kuwait incorporation process, we discuss our Client’s requirements and intentions for the new company. We then plan the optimal corporate structure for the intended business;
- Client due diligence and commitment: Our Client then i) settles Healy Consultants’ Kuwait engagement fees, ii) signs and returns our client engagement letter and iii) provides us with all the required due diligence documentation;
- Planning phase: Healy Consultants provides our Client with a detailed engagement plan for the Kuwait incorporation process, outlining a roadmap for the upcoming engagement, thereby minimizing unwanted surprises and meeting Client’s expectations;
- Ownership structure and director selection: Client confirms the Kuwait corporate structure, including a minimum of two shareholders. At least 51% shareholding should belong to a local nominee shareholder. Client then names the directors of the company, one of which must be a resident of Kuwait. Only Kuwaiti nationals are permitted by law to be general managers of companies;
- Application submission: Once all documents are in order, Healy Consultants files with the Department of Companies at the Ministry of Commerce and Industry (MOCI) an application to set up the company. This application indicates the name of the founding shareholders, the capital of the company, the percentage ownership of the capital by each shareholder, the business of the company, and the identity of the managers of the company;
- Name reservation: Client lists three unique company names in order of preference. Healy Consultants submits a unique company name reservation application to the Commercial Registry to determine the proposed name do not exist;
- Letter retrieval: Healy Consultants retrieves three letters from the Department of Companies addressed to the Criminal Investigation Department, Client’s preferred bank and the Kuwaiti Municipality;
- Capital deposit: Healy Consultants assists the Client to open a corporate bank account with the Client’s preferred bank and deposits the share capital into the account. The bank issues a certificate evidencing the same which will be kept safely for our Client;
- M&AA approval: Healy Consultants obtains approval of the draft memorandum of association from the Department of Companies and proceeds to submit to the Ministry of Justice for notarization i) a letter from DOC ii) bank capital deposit certificate and iii) the memorandum of association;
- Registration and licensing: The Incorporation Team then files the complete company documents with the Department of Companies and obtains a certificate of registration. Once the certificate is issued, Healy Consultants then obtains a commercial license from the DOC.
- Business premises: Healy Consultants assists our Client to locate a city center business premises in their preferred Kuwaiti Municipality and recruit local staff;
- Premises inspection: Healy Consultants through the Ministry of Commerce, submits a request to the Municipality and the Fire Department to conduct an inspection of the business premises to check for compliance with municipal health, fire and safety regulations. The Municipality then issues a certificate of no objection to authorize use of premises;
- Chamber of commerce registration: Healy Consultants submits copies of i) the commercial license, ii) notarized memorandum of association and iii) authorized signatories-filled specimen signature form and applies for membership with the Kuwaiti Chamber of Commerce and Industry;
- Additional registrations: The new company will then register with and obtain a civil number from the Public Authority for Civil Information (PACI), a mandatory requirement when dealing with other Kuwaiti government departments. Additionally, the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs conducts an inspection of the business premises;
- Engagement completion: Following the receipt of all necessary inspection approvals and company documents, Healy Consultants couriers a full company kit to our Client, including original corporate documents, unopened bank correspondence and a Client feedback survey.
Documents required to form a company in Kuwait:
Foreign entrepreneurs will be required to present:
Foreign entrepreneurs will be required to present:
- Legalized copies of passport and a recent proof of address for all non-Kuwaiti directors and shareholders;
- A police clearance certificate for all shareholders confirming there are no past criminal records; and
- A signed lease agreement for office premises, a receipt confirming rent payment and certificate of registration of the office with the Public Authority for Civil Information (PACI). These documents must also be translated to Arabic.
Frequently asked questions
- When incorporating a Kuwaiti company, is it mandatory to register all the details in the public register?
Yes. If our Client wishes to incorporate a Kuwait company, they will be expected to publish the company details for public record.
- How much capital will I be required to deposit when incorporating a company in Kuwait?
When incorporating in Kuwait, US$3,500 must be deposited in the corporate bank account.
- Will there be any restrictions for non-resident entrepreneurs when they incorporate in Kuwait?
While foreign entrepreneurs will be allowed to pursue business activities of their choice, they will be required to appoint a Kuwaiti national with at least 51% shareholding in the company.