Companies In Lebanon Companies & Business Formation in Lebanon, Beirut
The choice of the company’s form depends on numerous factors, such as its social object, number of partners, capital required, taxation, turnovers, its projects and goals, etc.. Find out in brief the reasons or advantages of forming a Company in Lebanon.(Click here)
In general, Lebanese Companies can be fully owned by foreigners. A lawyer must be retained regardless of the capital investment for each company to be set up in Lebanon according to the deontology code of Lebanese attorneys.You can contact our law firm corporate department to know what is the most suitable form of business entity depending on your vision and objectives.
Find below a glance at the most common companies type:
Company Formation Lebanon
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The most important types of Companies/Businesses are : 1-Partnership (general or limited) 2-Limited liability company (Société à Responsabilité Limitée) – SARL 3-Joint Stock Company (Société Anonyme Libanaise) – SAL 4-Foreign enterprise (Branch or Representative office) 5-Commercial representation 6-Holding companies 7-Offshore companies
The two categories of partnership:
General partnership (Société en Nom Collectif – SNC)
Partnership in commendam (Société en Commandite Simple – SCS).
2-Limited liability company (Société à Responsabilité Limitée) – SARL
A limited liability company is formed between three to twenty members. Its trade name is usually anonymous, and is sequenced by the initials SARL and name of the partners could be included in it. The capital of 5 000 000 Lbp-Lebanese Pounds (which is the equivalent of 3334 USD) must be fully paid up. The liability of each partner is strictly limited to the value of shares held by this partner.
The capital must be fully deposited in a bank under the company’s name. Management could be given to one or more partners, and a manager cannot achieve on the company’s behalf any deal or transaction in which he has any kind of interest.Excepted in case of prior authorization is granted.
3-Joint Stock Company (Société Anonyme Libanaise) – SAL
A joint stock company is formed by three or more persons. It should have a minimum authorized capital of 30 million LBP (The equivalent of 20 000 USD).
The shares in the company entitles the shareholder to membership in the company, a right to participate in management and a right to vote. These shares are negotiable or transferable. The liability of each shareholder is strictly limited to the value of the shares held. The Board of Directors must put aside 10 percent of the net profits to form a statutory reserve fund until such time as this reserve fund becomes equivalent to one-third of the capital of the company. A joint stock company must appoint an auditor.
4- Foreign companies wishing to do business in Lebanon have the possibly of opening local branch or representative office.
To set up a branch office, the foreign company’s Board of Directors must issue a proxy/power of attorney in favor of a person residing in Lebanon granting him the authority to register the company in Lebanon, to represent it and to sign documents and do all the necessary measures on its behalf.
Commercial representation is governed and defined by a Legislative Decree of 1967 according to which a commercial agent may negotiate for the conclusion of sales or the supply of services on behalf of his principal.
The agent can act, in this case, in the name of and for the accounts of the principal.
An agreement granting exclusive representation or distributorship to a person is considered as an agency agreement and may be granted only to Lebanese nationals, unless the foreign agent is a national of a country that assumes the same reciprocal treatment to Lebanese nationals.
A Holding company is a special type of joint stock company governed by law No. 45/83 and to law no 772 dated of 11-11-2006.
Therefore, the activities of a holding company are strictly limited to the following:
- Own shares and participations in Lebanese or foreign anonymous or limited liability companies, established or participate in their establishment.
- Administrate companies in which it owns shares or participations
- Give loans to the companies in which it owns shares or participations and guarantee these loans towards third parties. For this purpose, the holding may contract any loans or borrow monies from banks or issue securities pursuant to the provisions of the code of commerce (trade), save that the total value of the issued bonds do not exceed, at any given time, five times the capital of the holding plus the provisions according to the last balance approved. The holding company cannot give loans to companies operating in Lebanon in which it has more than 20% of the capital (this principle does not apply on foreign investments)
- Own patents, inventions, privileges and trademarks as well as any other registered rights; lease the same to the companies operating in Lebanon and abroad.
- Own movable and immovable assets save to use the same for the purpose of its activities and business exclusively in conformity with the code on the acquisition of real estate rights by foreigners in Lebanon.
The Offshore company is one diversion of joint stock companies .(Regulated by Decree Law No 46 of June 24, 1983)
Off shores companies are formed in Lebanon, however they operate only in the Lebanese free zone and/or outside the Lebanese territory.
The economy of Lebanon is a developing economy, with a private sector that contributes to 75% of aggregate demand and a large banking sector that supports this demand. The IMF forecast a growth of 7% for Lebanons real GDP in 2010 and 2011 following 9% growth in 2009 and 8.5% in 2008. It has the 54th richest GDP per capita in the world, and it was forecasted that Lebanons GDP per capita would reach $20,000 by 2015, making it one of the strongest economies in the region. However, the Lebanese economy was badly affected by the Syrian civil war. The institute of international finance forecasted GDP growth of only 0.7% for 2013. Lebanon also suffers from a very high degree of public debt, the third-highest in the world in terms of the ratio of debt-to-GDP. As a consequence, interest payments consumed 48% of government revenues in 2016, thus limiting the government’s ability to make needed investments in infrastructure and other public goods.
The major industrial sectors include metal products, banking, agriculture, chemicals, and transport equipment. Lebanon has a competitive and free market regime and a strong laissez-faire commercial tradition. The Lebanese economy is service-oriented; main growth sectors include banking and tourism. There are no restrictions on foreign exchange or capital movement.
Lebanon has a competitive and free market regime and a strong laissez-faire commercial tradition. The Lebanese economy is service-oriented; main growth sectors include banking and tourism. There are no restrictions on foreign exchange or capital movement, and bank secrecy is strictly enforced. Lebanon has recently adopted a law to combat money laundering. There are practically no restrictions on foreign investment. There are no country-specific U.S. trade sanctions against Lebanon.
Lebanon is a country in Asia and it is located in the western part of the Asian continent. Lebanon shares borders with just two countries Israel and Syria. The capital of Lebanon is Beirut and the official language of Lebanon is Arabic but many Lebanese also speaks French and English. As a matter of fact, English is rapidly becoming the first choice language that is used for business interactions in Lebanon.
The Lebanese economy revolves around Agriculture, Tourism, Commerce, and Banking.
Beirut the capital city of Lebanon has a very rich and robust nightlife hence attracting tourists who are heading towards the Middle East on vacation. It is important to note that Lebanon is ranked as 10th best country in terms of quality education and the 4th best country for math and science education in the world.
Lebanon is famous for its exquisite beauty, diversity, glamour, European flavor, and hospitable people. Its rich culture and history have placed it on the 'must see' list of every world traveler. Lebanese cities are among the most famous names in ancient history and majestic ruins still stand today as a testimony to the greatness of people who lived in this land. The nature of Lebanon makes it the only country in the Arab world that embraces four seasons yearly. No matter what the season, there is always something special to enjoy. In the winter season, ski resorts offer tourists slopes that are comparable to even the best resorts in Europe. In the summer, international festivals all over the country in Baalbek, Byblos, Beiteddine, Batroun, and Jounieh bring together Lebanese and foreign artists to perform in stunning archaeological and historical sites. These events have given Lebanon an enviable place on the cultural map of the Middle East.