Starting a Business in

West Bank and Gaza

Below is a detailed summary of the bureaucratic and legal hurdles faced by entrepreneurs wishing to incorporate and register a new firm in West Bank and Gaza. It examines the procedures, time and cost involved in launching a commercial or industrial firm with between 10 and 50 employees and start-up capital of 10 times the economy's per-capita gross national income.

This information was collected as part of the Doing Business project, which measures and compares regulations relevant to the life cycle of a small- to medium-sized domestic business in 190 economies. The most recent round of data collection was completed in June 2016.

Compare West Bank and Gaza to 189 other economies.

  • No. Procedure Time to Complete Associated Costs

    Obtain husband's permission to leave the home

    Agency: Home

    Per Jordanian Personal Status Law of 2010, Art. 62 The wife is considered disobedient if she leaves the marital home without a legitimate reason or prevent her spouse from entering her house. Additionally, Egyptian Personal Status Law as Amended by Law No. 100 of 1985, Art. 1 Maintenance is not due to the wife who leaves the marital home without her husband’s permission.

    1 day no charge

    Reserve a unique company name and obtain approval

    Agency: Companies Comptroller (Ministry of National Economy)

    The proposed company name can be checked and reserved at the Companies Comptroller. If the name is available for registration, payment of the name reservation fees should be paid to the account of the Ministry of National Economy or the Ministry of Finance at the Bank of Palestine.

    1 day fees included in procedure 3

    The hired lawyer signs the company documents

    Agency: Lawyer

    Hiring a lawyer to draft the articles of association and the company bylaws is recommended. These documents must then be stamped by the Lawyers Bar association before being filed at the companies' controller. The associated fees (at least 1000 USD) should be deposited with the Bar which will retain 10% of the fee and transfer the remaining 90% to the lawyer. This decision came into force in January 2010.

    2 days USD 1,000

    Register at the Companies Comptroller

    Agency: Companies Comptroller

    The following documents are required for submission in order to register at the Companies Comptroller:
    - Articles of association (3 copies)
    - Company bylaws (3 copies)
    - Shareholders identification card (copies)
    - Verified company name
    - Registration application (3 copies)
    - Powers of attorney

    Fee schedule for company registration:
    - Company name verification: ILS 87 (included in Procedure 1)
    - Application: ILS 285
    - Signature verification: ILS 84 per signature (minimum number of required signatures is two to form a private limited company or seven to form a public limited company). Note that signing must occur before the Company Registrar
    - Initial deposit of 1/1,000 of the stated capital

    There are two separate types of fees, one that varies with the number of shareholders and another that is a percentage of the stated capital.

    2 days see comments

    Pay the registration fees and open bank account

    Agency: Bank of Palestine

    Registration fees must be paid to the account of the Ministry of National Economy/Companies Controller at the Bank of Palestine upon submission of the registration documents. The Ministry will not review the application until the fee is paid.
    The company also needs to open a corporate bank account in order to register at the tax authority and VAT.

    1 day fees included in procedure 3

    Register for income and VAT tax

    Agency: Tax office

    The tax offices are located at the Ministry of Finance; the company receives the same unique registration number for both VAT and income tax. In most cases, accountants register the company for these taxes.

    2 days no charge
    * 7

    Obtain the business license from the Municipality

    Agency: Municipality

    The time and cost for obtaining a business license varies from sector to sector. However, for general trading the time is about 3 weeks and the fees are about ILS 20 for application and ILS 100 for the license. The municipality previously sent notices to the health and the relevant security authorities, such as the civil defense, to proceed with their inspections of the company premises. Since January 2014, a civil defense employee from the Fire Department and a doctor from the Ministry of Health were appointed at the municipality in order to carry out the necessary inspections and grant approvals for the business license as soon as the entrepreneur applies. Nevertheless, the business premises must still undergo inspection by these officials.

    36 days (simultaneous with previous procedure) ILS 120
    * 8

    Obtain clearance of the Internal Policy Manual (HR Issues)

    Agency: Ministry of Labor

    By law, Art 91 of the Labor law, the internal policy manual dealing with HR issues within the company must be sent for clearance at the Ministry of Labor. In this manual information on annual and sick leave policies, benefits and other HR policies must be clearly provided for approval.

    1 to 3 weeks (simultaneous with previous procedure) No charge
    * 9

    Obtain approval from the Ministry of Health

    Agency: Ministry of Health

    This health certificate is needed to show that you are in good health. Normally not all companies should undergo this process, but in practice all companies must obtain this health certificate in order to obtain a license from the Municipality of Ramallah

    3 days (simultaneous with previous only) no charge
    * 10

    Obtain approval from the Fire Department

    Agency: Fire Department

    The fire department approval granted by the civil defense employee located at the municipality is necessary to obtain the business license.

    Furthermore, in order to obtain the fire department's approval, a small office is obliged to obtain a fire extinguisher and other safety supplies. In addition, a larger office (a whole floor for example) needs to setup a fire alarm system.

    2 days (simultaneous with previous procedure) 65 ILS per 100 square meter

    Register with the Chamber of Commerce

    Agency: Chamber of Commerce

    Registration with the Chamber is required under Article 9 of the Chamber of Commerce Law of 2011. The following documents must be submitted:

    - Articles of association
    - Company bylaws
    - Company registration certificate

    The fee to register with the Chamber of Commerce depends on the company’s capital and on the nature of business. For a Grade B with registered capital between USD 20,000 and USD 50,000, the membership fee is JD 100 (about $143), the initial administrative fee of ILS 50 (about $15), and the annual fee of USD 80.

    1 day ILS 80

    * Takes place simultaneously with previous procedure.

    Applies to women only.