How To Start A Business in Libya

Doing Business in Libya

So you want to start a business in Libya – you’ve got a great idea, but you’re unsure of how to make it a reality. Perhaps you’re overwhelmed by the regulations and paperwork and feel that you need some local help and advice…well that’s where comes in. We can guide you through every step of the process of starting your business from on the ground in Tripoli; our network of experts have first-hand, professional knowledge of company formation in Libya, giving you the help that you need to register and launch your business. We can also introduce you to potential Libyan partners, provide you with important information on laws and licenses and offer you invaluable support to ensure that your business in Libya starts out on the right foot. Give your company the best start in Libya – contact us now and we’ll help you every step of the way.

Remember! Starting a business is not just the registration process. Once you have launched your business you need to make sure you develop your marketing and sales plan.

Do you need help in developing your marketing strategy? Let us help you create a marketing plan that will reach the potential clients in your focus market.

Real Estate Agents – How do they work?

September 30th, 2014

The process of using a local real estate agent in Libya is actually quite simple. There are agents with small little offices and some who have developed their businesses into larger offices. Which ever agent you choose, you need to understand how they work.

The first step in the process is to sit down with your agent and tell him what you are looking for. Make sure that you are very clear on how many rooms, what neighborhood (they normally only work their own area), how long of lease, and price range. Read the rest of this entry »

Is Libya Secure for Business?

October 14th, 2013

One of the questions that we get asked on a regular basis is, “Is Libya Secure for Business?” This is a tough question, without a simple answer.

What do Libyans think?
When I ask Libyans what they think, you get a mixed response. Many will tell you that Libya is fairly secure if you stay in Tripoli and if you don’t go out after dark. If you talk to others, they will tell you that the security in Libya is still not under control. At the end of the day, you will get a wide variety of answers depending on who you talk to. One thing for sure, they will all tell you to be aware and keep your eyes open.

What do the companies think?
There are some foreign companies that have returned to Libya after the revolution and are back to work. When I talked to one director, he said that now is the time to press forward in the work if you really want to capture a portion of the market. He did tell me that you need to be careful at night, but they were moving forward as normal. There are other foreign companies who have still not yet returned since the revolution. They are still concerned with the security in Libya.

At the current time, I believe you need to seriously consider your business strategies and objectives before jumping into business in Libya. There are huge opportunities for those willing to take a risk, however, there are serious ramifications if they encounter a security issue.

Make sure you consider your security plans before starting your business venture in Libya

How to obtain a Libyan Driver’s License

September 30th, 2013

Process for Converting a Foreign Driver’s License to a Local Libyan License 
September 2012 (Updated June 2013)

The Process
1. If possible, it’s good to have an International Driver’s license as well as a license from your country of citizenship, although it’s not a “must.”
2. An eye check-up is required…both to test for colorblindness AND vision! This may be done at an eye place near the roundabout in Fornaj (which is open for appointments only on Mondays), or by an eye doctor in Zawiya Dahamani (located on the same street as the eye hospital but on the opposite side of the road…next to an eye glass shop…on one street over from the bakery Kusha Fuanis). But…I think the place in Fornaj is preferred by the driver’s license office, since they are more familiar with it. The cost of this is 25 LYD.
3. Take your driver’s license (and Int’l license, if you have one) to YOUR Embassy (i.e. Americans must go to the US Embassy…note that an appointment is a MUST there!) and get them to write you a letter validating that your driver’s license is genuine. It must be signed and stamped by the consul. You will need your passport as well as a color copy of each of the driver’s licenses that you have. The cost at the US Embassy is about 70 LYD. Read the rest of this entry »

Internet – Getting set up

September 29th, 2013

At this point in time, there are only a few ways that you can have internet in your house. All of them take time to get established, but are necessary for keeping in touch with your families back home.

One of the best options is DSL, however, this can only be done if you have a landline in your house. You must first apply for a phone line through the phone company and then apply for your DSL connection. Read the rest of this entry »

Doing Business in Libya – The Basics

June 9th, 2013

Libya is becoming a business hot spot that offers amazing prospects for investors and is enjoying an influx of foreign stores and brands.

Setting up a business in Libya requires extensive market and culture know-how. You may be tech savvy but you will need to be prepared to conduct business in a country that is based on vital relationship building and deep-rooted cultures. Although processes are a bit slower, the rewards your business will reap are well worth it. You will also need to research your competitors and it is a good idea to use third party vendors to diligently collect data. Having a trustworthy expert on the ground is a must.

You will have to familiarize yourself with Libyan law too, particularly in the areas of sales and services such as building and construction. Local laws can seem somewhat ambiguous to foreigners so it is essential to work with a knowledgeable team who is equipped to handle your needs which will include coordinating with local council and ensuring compliance. Read the rest of this entry »

Why you should invest in Libya

April 20th, 2013

Libya can be described as a frontier market with amazing credentials, heaps of optimism and a driving ambition. The country also has deep pockets and boundless opportunities for investors. Libya has access to a cash pile of more than US$ 200 billion and the ability to rebuild its country. But there is massive room for investment in nearly every sector of the economy from retail to construction, training and oil.

The country’s cash pile is set to continue growing as oil productions surpass expectations. Infrastructure though requires a great deal of work and the country needs to rebuild literally everything from utilities to housing and power as well as telecommunications and there is no doubt that these opportunities coupled with investment will do wonders for job creation and education.

Our country views itself as a catalyst for stabilization and is working towards training the workforces to keep up with the mushrooming expectations of the nation and its visitors. Our current industries include petroleum, textiles, cement, handicrafts and food processing but attempts are being made to diversify the economy with focus being placed on tourism, agriculture, natural gas, fisheries and mining. Read the rest of this entry »

Why you should do business in Libya

April 8th, 2013

Libya has begun to offer fantastic business opportunities with many rewards to be reaped. With nearly every sector in the country requiring investment, from tourism to technology, infrastructure to education, Libya is certainly the right country for businesses wanting to gain exposure and financial reward. The country is ready for any kind of investment and business and the time is now if you want to get your business off to a booming start.

Recently, many foreign companies have been sourcing Libya’s business environment and sectors such as construction, oil and security are beginning to take off. If you do wish to conduct business in the country, you will be required to obtain a business visa. It’s a good idea to hire a reputable hosting company who can help you with the visa and get you on your way to investing with success.

Libya is a country with deep pockets and limitless opportunities and a number of foreign investors from the likes of France, Italy and Britain are already enjoying strong partnerships and essential relationships with Libyan partners. Read the rest of this entry »

Foreign Investment in Libya

March 14th, 2013

A very bright future for foreign investment has been predicted for Libya. Oil is obviously a predominant industry, along with gas, and it is planned that the entire sector will receive an overhaul. Current oil production sits at around 1.6 million barrels per day in a country that boasts the largest proven oil reserves on the continent along with vast gas reserves.

There are numerous other opportunities for foreign investment. Libya sits along an area of 1 700km of Mediterranean coastline and is enjoying a new influx of tourists. Infrastructure needs to be rebuilt and constructed to meet increasing demands and this includes roads, airlines, hotels, resorts, housing, health and education sectors that have room for investment that is sure to see great rewards. Telecommunications is another sector that requires investment. Each sector provides a great deal of projects and the job opportunities are plentiful.

Libya is moving towards an educated and market-based economy governed by a developing legal system. It is hoped that the private sector will generate a mass of employment and development and the door to foreign investment is being flung wide open. The focus now is on improving the lives of Libyans and projects will include improving health standards and providing education. Read the rest of this entry »

Islam – Understanding the Religion of Libya

March 7th, 2013

With over one billion followers, Islam has become the second largest religion in the world. It emerged in the 7th century in the city of Mecca in Saudi Arabia. The religion was founded on the teachings of the Prophet Mohammed who is believed to have been the final messenger of Allah. Islam literally means “surrender” or “submission,” and its followers are called Muslims, which means “those who make peace.”

While there are several sects of Islam, each is based upon six main beliefs: belief in angels, belief in the holy books, belief in the prophets, belief in the day of judgment, belief in predestination, and most importantly, belief in Allah as the one and only God. Allah has no children, parents, or partners. He created everything and rules everything. He is eternal and omnipotent, he has no form or shape, and he is just. Muslims worship only Allah and daily submit to his will.

According to Islam, Muslims are obligated to practice the Five Pillars of Islam in order to live a good and responsible life. The first is reciting the Shahadah. This is simply the Muslim profession of faith. All that must be done for one to become a Muslim is to say the Shahadah three times in front of witnesses. When stated, one is proclaiming that Allah is the only God, that Mohammed is his prophet, that they personally accept this as true, and that they commit to obeying all the responsibilities of Islam in their life. Read the rest of this entry »

LibyaBusiness.Com: “Your Libyan Business Guide & Directory”

LIBYABUSINESS.COM is a business site focusing on those interested in entering the Libya Business arena. From information on business registration to business listings, LIBYABUSINESS.COM is your solution for Libya Business.

“Whenever you see a successful business, someone once made a courageous decision

No.ProcedureTime to CompleteAssociated Costs
 1Reserve a unique company name
Agency: Company registry at the Ministry of Economy

The business owner meets with the notary, fills out the official form with name suggestions, type of company, etc. Then the notary sends a clerk to check at the registry the availability of the name for the client. After that an official name reservation certificate is issued by the registry.
2 days no charge
 2Draft memorandum and articles of association with the Notary
Agency: Notary

The founders have to bring copies of their ID’s and provide relevant details on how they would like to structure the bylaws of the company.
7 days 1% of the capital of the company or 1,000 LYD, whichever higher
*3Open a bank account and deposit paid-in minimum capital
Agency: Commercial Bank

The client opens a bank account while the notary is drafting the Articles of Association. To do so the client receives a letter from the notary confirming the name reservation, the capital and the founders’ names.
3 days, simultaneous with previous procedure Depends on the bank. It is either free (usually) or 5,000 LYD for depositing the capital.
 4Pay stamp duty
Agency: Office of Tax Department at the Ministry of Economy

The clerk from the notary’s office brings the name reservation, the ID’s, the bank receipt and the internal documents of the company (ownership structure, headquarters location, bylaws etc.) to the tax department where documents get stamped.
7 days 0.5% of the capital or 25 LYD
 5Apply and obtain registration at the commercial registry
Agency: Company registry at the Ministry of Economy

Stamped documents are brought to the registry by a clerk from the notary’s office. Certificate of registration is issued.
4 days 150 LYD + 0.5% of the start-up capital
 6Register at the Chamber of Commerce
Agency: Chamber of Commerce

A clerk from the notary’s office goes to the Chamber of Commerce and picks up the certificate from the Commercial Registry.
2 days 162.5 LYD
 7Retrieve the bank letter from the notary public
Agency: Commercial Bank

After obtaining the chamber of commerce and certificate of incorporation of the company, the public notary will issue a letter to the bank to activate the bank account and delegate the client to do so. The client submits the incorporation documents to the bank and completes the bank's applications in relation to the signatory on the Company's bank account.
1 day no charge
 8Notarize the company lease and Register with the Social Security Fund - Ministry of Labor
Agency: Lease Agent

The client obtains a lease and notarizes it. The company then registers with the social security fund and the Ministry of Labor.
1 day no charge
 9Obtain the business license
Agency: Office of Operations license of the Ministry of Economy

At this stage of the process the client needs the lease, the final bank account and all the previous forms. Depending on the business activity, the client needs an authorization of the relevant Ministry (e.g. Health, Food and Drug Administration etc.)
10 days 100.5 LYD
 10Obtain a company stamp
Agency: Printing shop

Business founders can obtain a company stamp at the Printing Shop for 20-70 LYD. A letter from the manager and a copy of the commercial extract of the company should be submitted for issuing the stamp.
1 day 20-70 LYD