This page was last modified on 08-09-2016

In order to operate as a trader, business managers must have a business permit.

The business permit is granted to the business (either the business manager operating under his own name, or the company he runs) provided:

  • the business manager meets the legal requirements in terms of qualification and professional integrity;
  • and the business has a fixed physical establishment in Luxembourg (no so-called 'letterbox companies').

The General Directorate for SMEs and Entrepreneurship will verify that these provisions are complied with at the time the application for a business permit is submitted.

After the business permit has been obtained and depending on the legal business structure chosen, the establishment has to proceed with various registrations/affiliations before it can start up business.

Traders who are legally established on the territory of the Swiss Confederation or in a country of the European Economic Area (EEA) may provide temporary and occasional services in Luxembourg without business permit and without giving prior notification.

Forms / Online services

Carry out your procedure:

  • With an online service

    • Business permit - online application
    • Extract from the criminal record of a natural person - online service
  • By downloading a form

Who is concerned

The activities of traders include:

  • wholesale trade;
  • retail trade;
  • provision of commercial services;
  • selling beverages and hot dishes that are not consumed on the premises (e.g. selling food from a food truck);
  • services which are intellectual in nature and provided by a commercial company;
  • and industrial activities.

The activities of traders do not include:


In order to comply with the qualifications required to become a trader, business managers must have:

  • either a vocational diploma (diplôme d'aptitude professionnelle - DAP) or similar (vocational skills certificate - CATP, CAP, etc.) or higher (secondary school graduation diploma, Bachelor's degree, Master's degree etc.);
  • or any professional experience of at least 3 years in an EU Member State;
  • or a certificate of successful completion of the final exam which completes the course for access to the profession of trader organised by the Chamber of Commerce via the House of Training or any other similar training course provided in another EU Member State;
  • or a copy of a previously held business permit.

Persons wishing to access the profession may, if needed, request the recognition of their professional qualifications from the department for the recognition of diplomas (Service de la reconnaissance des diplômes) before sending their business permit application.

Traders who carry out their activity exclusively in fairs and markets or public places do not have to provide proof of their professional qualifications.

Preliminary steps

If the manager intends to operate an establishment where some of the activities/installations have not yet been authorised, he must apply for an operating permit for classified establishments.

Examples of activities/installations that are subject to authorisation:
  • production and processing of food products;
  • worksites and development works;
  • creation/development of activity areas;
  • shopping centres, shops and stores with a surface exceeding 600 m2;
  • garages, covered car parks;
  • office buildings;
  • elevators, service lifts;
  • work processes, establishments or projects that may cause substantial neighbourhood annoyance or specific hazards to the safety and health of employees, etc.
The application procedure for operating permits for classified establishments may take several months.
It is therefore recommended to submit the application at the very beginning of the project.

How to proceed

Business permit application in Luxembourg

Documentary proof of qualification

In order to provide proof of the professional qualification to operate as a trader, the business manager must attach the following to their application for a business permit:

  • a copy of their degrees, diplomas or certificates of completion (it is advisable to attach certified true copies for certificates or diplomas issued by bodies outside the EU);
  • or, in the case of professional experience in another country of the European Union:
    • a certificate (European certificate of experience or equivalent) delivered by the competent authority or body of the country of origin (generally a professional association);
  • or, in the case of professional experience in Luxembourg:
  • where applicable, proof of the recognition of professional qualification by the department for the recognition of diplomas.

Documents attesting professional integrity

In order to provide proof of professional integrity, business managers must attach the following to their business permit application:

  • applicants residing in Luxembourg for more than 10 years:
  • applicants who do not reside in Luxembourg or have been residing in the country for less than 10 years:
    • a sworn declaration concerning any management positions held in businesses during the 3 years prior to the application;
    • a declaration of non-bankruptcy (recent and unlimited) before a notary.
    • This sworn declaration must state that the applicant has not been involved in the bankruptcy of a business in his own name nor in the bankruptcy of a company;
  • an extract from the criminal record or equivalent issued by the state(s) in which the applicant has resided during 10 years prior to the application (including, where applicable, an extract from the criminal record in Luxembourg).
  • Failing that, an affidavit (sworn declaration).

Other documents to be submitted with the application

The following documents must also be attached to the business permit application:

  • a copy of the manager's identity card;
  • proof of payment of stamp duty (droit de chancellerie), in the form of:
    • either a tax stamp, value EUR 24, purchased at the Indirect Tax Authority (AED);
    • or the proof of payment of EUR 24 into the IBAN account LU09 1111 7026 5281 0000, BIC code: CCPLLULL of the Diekirch Revenue Office, with the following communication: 'autorisation de commerce';
  • in the event of an application for a business (legal person), the company's articles of association which have been filed with the Trade and Companies Register.
In the event of an online application for a business permit via MyGuichet (with a Luxtrust card), the system will automatically generate the list of supporting documents to be attached to the application and which may vary depending on the data entered by the applicant.

Registrations/affiliations depending on the legal form of the company

After the business manager has received the business permit, he must carry out various administrative procedures which depend on the legal form of business chosen.

Sole proprietorship (Entreprise individuelle)

In the case of a sole proprietorship, the manager has to:

Partnerships (SENC, SECS)

In the case of a partnership (SECS, SENC), the business managers have to:

Capital companies (SA, SARL, SECA, SE)

In the case of a capital company (SA, SARL, SECA, SE), the managers have to:

Other registrations depending on the activity

Depending on the planned activity, the business manager is required to request different registrations and certificates, namely:

  • operators in the food sector have to register as an establishment in the food sector with the Food safety unit (e.g.: grocery shops, night shops, wholesale and retail trade in food products, food packaging establishments, etc.);
  • producers and importers of cosmetic products are required to notify the initial placing on the EU market of a cosmetic product to the Department of Pharmacy and Medicine (Division de la Pharmacie et des Médicaments -DPM), etc.

Authorised activities

A business permit for traders grants the right to carry out the activity indicated on the permit and also:

  • to use the articles and items concerned by the authorised trade for the purposes of sale, preparation and repair, with the exception of proper craftwork repairs;
  • to carry out the authorised activity in fairs, markets and public places.

The business permit entitled 'trader' is not limited to one commercial branch in particular: it gives the right to carry out all commercial activities except those that are specially regulated.

Transfer of the company

In the event of death, occupational invalidity, duly established incapacity or retirement of the manager of a commercial business, the business permit may be transferred to:

  • the spouse;
  • an ascendant;
  • a descendant;
  • a direct relative or relative by marriage up to the third degree.

Who to contact

Ministry of the Economy

B.P. 535 - L-2937 - Luxembourg
Phone: (+352) 247-74700
Fax: (+352) 247-74701

Opening hours
The telephone helpline is open Monday to Friday, from 13.00 to 17.00 (not on public holidays).
14, rue Erasme
L-1468 - Luxembourg
Phone: (+352) 42 39 39 - 330

Opening hours
from 8.30 to 17.30